A series of venomous, anti-Semitic tweets have come back to haunt a doctor in Cleveland. As a result of her social media posts — which included threats to prescribe the wrong medication to Jewish patients — the 27-year-old Palestinian woman was fired from the medical center where she had been employed.
Lara Kollab was a supervised resident at the Cleveland Clinic from July to September 2018, according to the medical center’s website. Eileen Sheil, a spokesperson for the Cleveland Clinic, confirmed to Yahoo Lifestyle that Kollab was terminated as a direct result of her social media posts.
The tweets — which were published by Canary Mission, a watchdog group that “documents people and organizations that promote hatred of the USA, Israel and Jews on North American college campuses” — were posted partly when Kollab was still a student at Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine, which is part of a private university system affiliated with Jewish culture and traditions.
Her name is Lara Kollab, just so everyone knows, if you hear that name asked to checked out. pic.twitter.com/88wu3tEQQc
— This Aggression Will Not Stand Man (@Brandon47162193) January 1, 2019
Though Kollab’s social media accounts have been shut down and her dozens of tweets are now deleted, her words were captured by Canary Mission and have since gone viral. The tweets — which actually span a six-year period from 2011 through 2017, according to the Times of Israel — mock Jews, encourage abuse and violence against them and even downplay the Holocaust as “exaggerated.”
In one tweet, she writes, “I’ll purposely give all the yahood the wrong meds,” using the slang version of Yahudi, an Arabic term for Jews. In others, she calls for her followers to “destroy the homes of Jews” and declares “May Allah take back (end the lives) of the Jews so we stop being forced to go to those unclean ones,” according to a translation by the Jerusalem Post.
— Canary Mission (@canarymission) December 27, 2018
Canary Mission also cited a tweet in which Kollab defended violence against Jews, writing “After repeated failed diplomacy, our aim is to defeat the Zionist state through force,” in response to a tweet that read, “Peace won’t come by killing every Zionist. There has to be diplomacy.” Kollab also defended the Palestinian Sunni-Islamist fundamentalist organization Hamas in a series of tweets that the group was “created in response to decades of brutal oppression with stated goal of ending that oppression” and that the organization “doesn’t hate Jews,” but “wants to liberate their people,” the Canary Mission posted on its website.
In other tweets, she supported people like Khader Adnan, a senior member of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) terrorist organization, according to Canary Mission. She also compared Israel to Nazi Germany with statements like, “It’s funny how zionists are trying to compare BDS with the Holocaust. If anything, you’re the nazis in the situation now.”
In other tweets, Kollab trivialized the Holocaust and drew parallels to the current Israeli-Palestinian conflict. She wrote, “I don’t mean to sound insensitive but I have a REALLY hard time feeling bad about the Holocaust seeing as the ppl who were in it now kill my ppl.” She also mentioned that she planned to be “brutally unsympathetic” in a school assignment she was required to write about a Holocaust film.
When she was not wishing violence and death on Jewish people, Kollab was apparently using Twitter to ridicule them, posting comments like, “Why is the airport literally full of Jews. I just had an evil staring contest with one bc he was staring. They look like settlers,” and accusing Jews of being the ones who “unfold and mess up all our clothes, steal things from our suitcases.” She brags about her friend kicking someone out of his Arabic restaurant for asking for Israeli hummus, muses about her father screaming and calling Jews “dogs,” and recalls “walking through the streets of Palestine,” where “everyone who gets mad says something along the lines of ‘Allah will take them, the Jews,” according to the Canary Mission.
The backlash has been almost as severe as Kollab’s words themselves.
In addition to confirming Kollab’s termination, the Cleveland Clinic shared a statement with Yahoo Lifestyle condemning its former employee. It reads:
“This individual was employed as a supervised, first-year resident at our hospital from July to September 2018. When we learned of the social media post, we took immediate action, conducted an internal review and placed her on administrative leave. Her departure was related to those posts and she has not worked at Cleveland Clinic since September. For first-year residents, multiple safeguards and direct supervision are required for patient care and prescribing medicine. In addition, there have been no reports of any patient harm related to her work during the time she was here. In no way do these beliefs reflect those of our organization. We fully embrace diversity, inclusion and a culture of safety and respect across our entire health system.”
Representatives for Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine also expressed their shock and disappointment at their controversial alumni, releasing statements on Twitter in which they said they were “appalled” by Kollab’s anti-Semitic statements, as “the mission of Touro College is to educate, perpetuate and enrich the historic Jewish tradition of tolerance and dignity.” They called Kollab’s sentiments “antithetical to Touro and to the physicians’ Hippocratic Oath.”
Touro College is appalled by the anti-Semitic comments reportedly made by Lara Kollab, a graduate of the Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine. The mission of Touro College is to educate, perpetuate and enrich the historic Jewish tradition of tolerance and dignity.
— Touro College (@WeAreTouro) December 31, 2018
We are shocked that one of our graduates would voice statements that are antithetical to Touro and to the physicians’ Hippocratic Oath. We have received word from the Cleveland Clinic where Dr. Kollab was last affiliated and learned that she is no longer employed there.
— Touro College (@WeAreTouro) December 31, 2018
The Canary Mission has published a full bio of Kollab, recounting every anti-Semitic, threatening thing she has said on social media and posting images of however many of the tweets the organization could capture before they were all deleted. The site also details her professional résumé and track her medical education in its mission to expose bigots, as declared in its tagline, “If you’re racist, the world should know.”
Meanwhile, commenters are vilifying Kollab on the very platform she used to spread her anti-Semitic hate. “If that’s not a hate crime, I don’t know what is,” one person wrote. Others called for justice, with one writing, “Her license should be revoked and all of the patients she has taken care of the files should be reviewed to see if she tried to kill or hurt them,” and another commenting “This must go to the licensing board, she is a danger to patients, her license needs to be revoked.”
But, as far as representatives from the Cleveland Clinic know, Kollab’s license has not been revoked — and Sheil declined to speak further on the matter. Ohio state records show that Kollab’s training certificate from the Medical Board is still active and extends through June 30, 2021.
Yahoo Lifestyle was not able to locate Kollab for a response.
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