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Former Cleveland Clinic doctor apologizes for anti-Semitic comments on social media

"I have learned from this experience and am sorry for the pain I have caused. I pray that the Jewish community will understand and forgive me."

A Cleveland Clinic residency doctor who was let go last year after posting anti-Semitic remarks on social media, has issued an apology.

In a blog posted on Friday, Lara Kollab said, "Several social media comments posted on my twitter account years ago have surfaced recently, causing pain, anguish, and a public outcry.  I wish sincerely and unequivocally to apologize for the offensive and hurtful language contained in those posts." 

The posts from Kollab date back from 2011 to 2017. They surfaced thanks to the website Canary Mission, which is known to scour the internet for hatred. Their motto is, "If you're a racist, the world should know."

In their overview of Kollab, they saw she "has called for violence against Jews, spread anti-Semitism, trivialized the Holocaust, defended the terror organization Hamas, and supported terrorists on Twitter."

They posted dozens of Kollab's social media posts, but one—most concerning for a doctor—said, "I'll probably give all the Jews the wrong meds." 

Most of the posts are from 2011 and 2012, when Kollab was still an undergraduate at John Carroll University. They included statements like, "Destroy the homes of the Jews," and, "May Allah end the lives of the Jews." 

Kollab lasted less than two months at the Cleveland Clinic's residency program. In a statement, the Clinic said she was terminated because of her posts:

"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.

In her blog post, Kollab recalled that she visited Palestinian territories every summer as a child. She was bothered by what she called "the suffering of the Palestinians under the Israeli occupation." 

She closed by writing, "I have learned from this experience and am sorry for the pain I have caused. I pray that the Jewish community will understand and forgive me. I hope to make amends so that we can move forward and work together towards a better future for us all."

Kollab graduated from Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine in New York, ironically a university that advertises itself as rooted in Jewish tradition and built on Jewish values. Her medical license is still active in Ohio.