Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 5 August 2020

Seth Rogen says he was 'fed lies' about Israel: 'They never tell you there were people there'

The Hollywood star says he was misled about conflict with Palestinian people as a child

Actor Seth Rogen has opened up about his thoughts on Israel in a new podcast. EPA
Actor Seth Rogen has opened up about his thoughts on Israel in a new podcast. EPA

Seth Rogen has claimed he was “fed a huge amount of lies about Israel” while growing up, revealing he was misled about the plight of the Palestinian people.

The Canadian-American actor, 38, opened up about his faith on Marc Maron's WTF podcast, released on Monday, July 27.

The Superbad star, who attended Jewish schools and Jewish camps in Vancouver, says the fact that Israel was created on land where Palestinians lived was often omitted from teachings.

“[As] a Jewish person I was fed a huge amount of lies about Israel my entire life,” Rogen said during his appearance.

"They never tell you that, 'oh, by the way, there were people there'. They make it seem like it was just like sitting there, like the door’s open. They forget to include the fact to every young Jewish person.”

More than 700,000 Palestinians were driven from their homes in 1948 during the Nakba – the Arabic word for catastrophe – which culminated in the creation of Israel.

Rogen, whose parents met on a kibbutz in Israel, also questioned the state's existence during the podcast.

“To me it just seems an antiquated thought process,” he said. “If it is for religious reasons, I don’t agree with it, because I think religion is silly. If it is for truly the preservation of Jewish people, it makes no sense, because again, you don’t keep something you’re trying to preserve all in one place – especially when that place is proven to be pretty volatile, you know?”

They never tell you that, 'oh, by the way, there were people there'. They make it seem like it was just like sitting there, like the door’s open

When asked by Maron if he would ever consider living in Israel, Rogen said no.

The Knocked Up actor also opened up about antisemitism, saying he was warned by his father that "people hate Jews".

"It’s honestly something that I am so glad was instilled in me from a young age. Because if it wasn’t, I would constantly be shocked at how much [people] hate Jews," he said.

"It is pervasive and it is prevalent and it is to many Jewish people so confounding that they don't assume it's true ... I've tried to put a lot of thought into why it's happened. People obviously hate people who do not look like them. I think people also have a weird fear of people who look like them but do not believe the same thing they do fundamentally."

Rogen appeared on WTF to promote his latest film, An American Pickle, in which he plays Herschel Greenbaum, a Jewish labourer who moves to US in 1920 in search of the American dream.

After falling into a vat of brine, he is preserved and wakes up 100 years later to find himself in a much-changed world.

Updated: July 29, 2020 08:50 PM

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