Netanyahu might meet Musk amid antisemitism conflict with ADL

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu said he will meet with Elon Musk while travelling in the US amid the billionaire’s major conflict with ADL.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is set to meet with Elon Musk, despite the billionaire’s feud with the Anti-Defamation League. The organisation accuses Musk of amplifying antisemitism on his social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter, reports The Times of Israel.

Netanyahu will visit Silicon Valley before his trip to New York to speak at the United Nations General Assembly later this month, his office said, adding that the prime minister plans „to hold a series of meetings with leading figures in the artificial intelligence world. For Netanyahu, the trip to the US will be his first since retaking office in December as head of the government.

Netanyahu has met and spoken with Musk several times in recent years and holds him in high regard. He once called him a „genius” and „a man of vision, perhaps the greatest technological visionary of our time.” He and his far-right government have already shown a willingness to side with Musk over the US Jewish community amid antisemitism controversies, which provoked a backlash from the Anti-Defamation League. When, in May, Musk said that Soros „hates humanity” and compared the philanthropist to a comic book villain, the Foreign Ministry, the ADL and other Jewish organisations said the comments stoked antisemitism, while Diaspora Affairs Minister Amichai Chikli defended the tech billionaire.

„As Israel’s minister who’s entrusted with combating antisemitism, I would like to clarify that the Israeli government and the vast majority of Israeli citizens see Elon Musk as an amazing entrepreneur and a role model,” adding that „criticism of Soros – who finances the most hostile organisations to the Jewish people and the state of Israel is anything but antisemitism, quite the opposite!”

The ADL has tracked massive spikes in racist, antisemitic and homophobic content and harassment since Musk took over the social media platform now known as X, restoring extremist accounts which were formerly banned.

The conflict between the organisation and Musk has escalated, and last week, Musk asked his followers whether he should poll the platform about a hashtag, #BanTheADL, a comment which was immediately embraced by white nationalists and others on the far right.

He also threatened to sue ADL for billions of dollars, accusing the organisation of trying to tank the platform by encouraging an ad boycott against it. ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt denies these accusations and warned that Musk was spreading „age-old tropes” around blaming Jews for antisemitism and „engaging online with users who are espousing antisemitism and hate.