Benjamin Netanyahu says Elon Musk is committed to fighting antisemitism

The Israeli PM met with the billionaire in Silicon Valley


Benjamin Netanyahu has stressed Elon Musk is "committed to combating antisemitism" just weeks after the Twitter/X boss threatened to sue a Jewish anti-racism body.

During a live talk with the tech entrepreneur in California on Monday, the Israeli PM said: "I hope you find within the confines of the First Amendment a way to combat antisemitism. I know you're committed to it. I think it's important to condemn."

Responding to Netanyahu, Musk said: “Obviously I'm against antisemitism, I’m against anything that promotes hate and conflict. Everyone should have this view. All it takes is long-term thinking.”

However, he stressed that “free speech does at times mean that someone you don’t like is saying something you don’t like. If you don’t have that, it’s not free speech.

"That doesn’t mean some sort of negativity should be pushed on people.” 

Netanyahu went on to say: “I do not care where antisemitism comes from, whether from the hard right or hard left. However, it must be condemned."

Musk threatened to sue the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) earlier this month, claiming the organisation caused him to lose billions of dollars by making false accusations of antisemitism.

According to the ADL, problematic and racist speech has sharply risen on Twitter/X since Musk completed his $44 billion takeover in October last year. 

Musk also quizzed Netanyahu about his government's judicial reforms which have opened a deep divide in Israeli society, triggering weeks of protests.  

He pointed out: “I’ve gotten more negative pushback on this from employees at Tesla than anything I’ve ever done.”

Netanyahu responded: “Israel is, was, and always will be a robust democracy, It’s we the people, not we the elites.

“Thirty years ago, the balance between the branches had to change. We have the most powerful judiciary in the world. It has no checks and no balances, just power.”

The Israeli PM stressed that he would be focused on finding a consensus for the reforms upon his return to Israel after his US trip. 

The pair had kicked off the live talk with a discussion of artificial intelligence as both a blessing and a curse for humanity.

Share via

Want more from the JC?

To continue reading, we just need a few details...

Want more from
the JC?

To continue reading, we just
need a few details...

Get the best news and views from across the Jewish world Get subscriber-only offers from our partners Subscribe to get access to our e-paper and archive