Greta Thunberg was accused by Israeli officials of being a “terror supporter” on Friday after posting pro-Palestinian messages — initially featuring a toy octopus, a known anti-Semitic trope.

The 20-year-old ecowarrior posted a photo of her holding a “Stand with Gaza” sign alongside three friends — one holding a “Free Palestine” sign — while calling a strike “in solidarity with Palestine and Gaza”, the NY Post reports.

With them was a toy octopus — a symbol often used in anti-Jewish propaganda since being used in a Nazi-era cartoon.

The Time “Person of the Year” honoree later deleted the photo, replacing it with an almost identical one — just without the offensive symbol, about which she protested innocence.

“It has come to my knowledge that the stuffed animal shown in my earlier post can be interpreted as a symbol for anti-Semitism, which I was completely unaware of,” she said.

Instead, the ecowarrior — who has previously discussed being on the autism spectrum — claimed that “the toy in the picture is a tool often used by autistic people as a way to communicate feelings”.

“We are of course against any type of discrimination, and condemn anti-Semitism in all forms and shapes. This is non-negotiable. That is why I deleted the last post,” she insisted.

Her messaging — even without the octopus — drew disgusted condemnation from Israel Defense Forces (IDF) spokesman Arye Sharuz Shalicar.

“Whoever identifies with Greta in any way in the future, in my view, is a terror supporter,” the enraged IDF official told Politico.

“Because what Greta is doing, that she is now showing solidarity with Gaza while not saying a word about the massacres of Israelis, shows that she is not in favour of the Palestinians, but that she is sweeping the terror of the Palestinians or Hamas and Islamic Jihad under the table as if it did not exist.”

Other officials also ripped Ms Thunberg, who also shared an Instagram post from a German-based Palestinian group that called Israel’s retaliatory air strikes on the Gaza Strip a “genocide”.

“It is not the octopus that makes this all tweet feel very anti-Semitic … It is the [complete] denial of torturing, raping, beheading, and kidnapping thousands of Israelis,” Israeli diplomat Dana Filber wrote.

Former journalist Doron Herman shared a graphic that read “Greta Thunberg Supports ISIS” in bold letters.

“You say you are against anti-Semitism, yet you can’t say a word to condemn Hamas or express solidarity for the 1400 people — including children — they have slaughtered,” human rights lawyer and self-described “proud Zionist” Arsen Ostrovsky also replied to Thunberg’s X post.

Hamas, which is based in the Gaza Strip, frequently has been compared to ISIS since its attack on Israel.

Mr Shalicar later walked back his comments on Ms Thunberg’s supporters, telling Politico that he “spoke out of a deep sense of pain and [his] words do not reflect my personal views or those of the IDF”.

The backlash against Ms Thunberg’s Gaza stance comes just three days after she was arrested at an anti-oil protest outside a five-star hotel in London on Tuesday.

She was charged with a public order offence, and was released on bail until a November 15 hearing at the Westminster Magistrates’ Court.

This article originally appeared on NY Post and was reproduced with permission


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