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Johns Hopkins doctor on leave after calling Palestinians ‘blood thirsty morally depraved animals’

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A top doctor at Johns Hopkins University has been placed on leave after making a series of disturbing statements about Palestinians on social media, calling them “blood thirsty morally depraved animals,” according to reports.

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Dr. Darryn Klugman, the director of pediatric cardiac critical care at Hopkins, posted the offensive remarks on X after Hamas attacked Israel on Oct. 7, The Baltimore Banner said.

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“These are the Palestinians. Blood thirsty morally depraved animals who want nothing short of every inch of Israel and all Jews dead,” he wrote a day after the massacre, according to screenshots shared online of the since-deleted posts.

“Stop telling me about peace partners … time to reclaim every inch of Israel for Jews,” he reportedly wrote. “Israel has no peace partner w the Palestinians. Barbaric animals w no concern for life.”

Klugman, an associate professor at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, also reportedly wrote that Palestinians are “showing the world exactly who they are & what they want- dead Jews & no more #Israel. Just savage animals. … Don’t talk moderation, peace, Israeli aggression. Time to reclaim Gaza since 2005 & end Iran nuclear program.”

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Dr. Darryn Klugman, a top pediatrician at Johns Hopkins University, has been placed on leave over a series of hateful comments posted on social media about Palestinians.
Johns Hopkins Medicine

The X account with his name also responds to a post about a “large scale slaughter” of Palestinians with “G-d willing,” according to the Banner.

Johns Hopkins Medicine spokesperson Kim Hoppe announced the prestigious institution’s actions in a lengthy statement.

“We at Johns Hopkins share the concern of many about the deeply disturbing social media posts made by a faculty member in the School of Medicine regarding the ongoing crisis in the Middle East,” she wrote.

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“These are the Palestinians. Blood thirsty morally depraved animals who want nothing short of every inch of Israel and all Jews dead,” Klugman reportedly wrote.

“The faculty member who made these statements has been placed on leave, and thus will have no interaction with students or patients while we conduct a thorough investigation under our policies and procedures,” Hoppe continued.

“Statements that explicitly threaten or extol violence against groups or individuals on the basis of national origin, race or religion violate our policies and do not represent our values,” she added.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations has filed a complaint against Klugman with the Maryland Board of Physicians.

Klugman is the director of pediatric cardiac critical care and an associate professor at Hopkins.
LinkedIn / Darren Klugman

“A doctor who harbors views that any ethnic group is less than human and expresses support for their extermination cannot be trusted to diligently uphold their ethical and moral obligation to serve the medical needs of their patient population to the best of their ability,” the council said in a release.

It called for Klugman’s medical license to be revoked if the board determines he made the anti-Palestinian statements, according to the Banner.

In a statement, the medical board said it “cannot disclose whether or not Dr. Darren Klugman is under investigation,” WMAR2 News reported.

“By law, all complaints and subsequent investigations are confidential and not subject to public inspection,” it added.

Klugman’s message of apology.

Zainab Chaudry, director of the Muslim advocacy group’s Maryland office, said Klugman’s comments communicated a “deep-rooted animus “ toward Palestinians that has “deeply shaken the trust” of Arab-Americans, the Baltimore Sun reported.

“The last thing any family should be worried about is, ‘will this doctor harbor any animus toward my child?’” she told the outlet.

“Someone with that level of animus who’s called for the wholesale slaughter of an entire ethnic group, who’s called barbaric animals . . . The kind of language that was used in the posts, it really was very troubling,” Chaudry told CBS News.

She said her group wants the Maryland Board of Physicians to revoke the physician’s medical license if it determines the authenticity of the hateful posts.

“Hopkins, they need to take this seriously,” Chaudry said. “They need to take the appropriate measures by terminating his position there.”

Klugman has issued an apology to his colleagues in which he said he was writing the “note with a heavy heart,” CBS News reported.

“I wrote a series of regrettable, hurtful messages on X (formerly Twitter). These messages in no way reflect my beliefs, me as a person, a physician, a friend, or colleague,” he wrote.

Johns Hopkins said Klugman “will have no interaction with students or patients” during a probe.

“I cannot undo the harm and hurt that those messages have caused, and I am devastated by the impact it has had on my Hopkins family and others,” the doc continued.

“Other than my family, there is nothing I value more than my job and the privilege of taking care of the sickest patients and most vulnerable families,” he said, adding that he is “fully committed to repairing the damage.”

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