Herzog to Musk: X is full of antisemitism and you can play ‘huge role’ in fighting problem

Jeremy Sharon is The Times of Israel’s legal affairs and settlements reporter

Elon Musk (left) meets with President Isaac Herzog in Jerusalem on November 27, 2023. (Haim Zach/GPO)
Elon Musk (left) meets with President Isaac Herzog in Jerusalem on November 27, 2023. (Haim Zach/GPO)

President Isaac Herzog tells Elon Musk, owner of X (formerly Twitter) that the social media site he runs is full of antisemitism and that he has “a huge role” in fighting the problem.

In a meeting at the President’s Residence, Herzog says the scenes Musk witnessed during a tour of Kfar Aza this morning and in a video of footage of the atrocities Hamas committed on October 7 demonstrated how hatred can lead to murder.

“Unfortunately, we are inundated by antisemitism, which is Jew hate, and Jew hate impacts the entire notion of behavior of human beings in so many places around the world. And you have a huge role to play, and I think we need to fight it together, because under the platforms you lead, unfortunately, there is a harboring of a lot of old hate which is Jew hate, which is antisemitism,” Herzog tells Musk.

“You’ve seen how evil can supersede everything, you’ve seen this morning what hate can bring about, you’ve seen how… thought turns into evil turns into hate and into bloodshed.”

Musk says in response that he has had an “emotionally difficult day” seeing the places where people were murdered and “watch[ing] the video where the murderers are rejoicing in the deaths.”

“These people have been fed propaganda since they were children. It’s remarkable what humans are capable of if they are fed falsehood since they are children. They can think that murdering innocent people is a good thing. That’s how much propaganda can affect people’s minds,” Musk adds.

The Israeli readout does not include any comments from Musk on Herzog’s concerns regarding X.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu did not raise concerns over antisemitism on X when he spoke with Musk earlier in a Live Chat on the platform.

Musk has faced accusations of tolerating antisemitic content on X. Organizations such as the ADL, with whom Musk has clashed, note a huge spike in antisemitic messages on the platform since the beginning of Israel’s war with Hamas in Gaza.

Musk himself sparked outcry this month when he endorsed an antisemitic post on X that accused Jews of driving hatred against white people.

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