White House blasts Musk for ‘hideous’ anti-Semitic lie

November 18, 2023 10:23 | News

The White House has accused Elon Musk of repeating a “hideous” anti-Semitic lie on his social media site X, calling it an “abhorrent promotion” of “racist hate” that “runs against our core values as Americans”.

The White House statement follows decisions by at least two more major corporations to pull their advertising dollars from X after watchdog Media Matters found ads by IBM, Apple and others were placed alongside content promoting Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party.

Responding to Musk’s post on Wednesday, the White House condemned what it called an “abhorrent promotion of anti-Semitic and racist hate” that “runs against our core values as Americans.”

Musk on Wednesday endorsed a post on X that falsely claimed Jewish people were stoking hatred against white people, saying the user who referenced the “Great Replacement” conspiracy theory was speaking “the actual truth”.

That conspiracy theory holds that Jewish people and leftists are engineering the ethnic and cultural replacement of white populations with non-white immigrants that will lead to a “white genocide”.

“It is unacceptable to repeat the hideous lie … one month after the deadliest day for the Jewish people since the Holocaust,” White House spokesman Andrew Bates said, referring to Hamas’ October 7 attack on Israel.

Representatives for Musk and X on Friday again declined to comment on Musk’s post on Wednesday.

Lions Gate Entertainment Corp on Friday said it was pausing its X ads, while Axios reported Apple, the world’s largest company by market value, was also pausing its ads.

IBM on Thursday halted its advertising on the platform.

“When it comes to this platform – X has also been extremely clear about our efforts to combat anti-Semitism and discrimination,” X CEO Linda Yaccarino wrote on Thursday.

“There’s no place for it anywhere in the world – it’s ugly and wrong. Full stop.”

Advertisers have fled the site since Musk bought it in October 2022 and reduced content moderation, resulting in a sharp rise in hate speech on X, civil rights groups have said.

Anti-Semitism has been on the rise in recent years in the United States and worldwide. 

Following the outbreak of war between Israel and Palestinian Islamist group Hamas after last month’s attack, anti-Semitic incidents in the US rose by almost 400 per cent from the year-earlier period, according to the Anti-Defamation League, a nonprofit that fights anti-Semitism.

Musk, chief executive of electric vehicle maker Tesla and founder of rocket company SpaceX, has blamed the Anti-Defamation League for the ongoing drop in advertisers without offering any evidence.

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