Musk-Netanyahu Meeting All About AI & Innovation, Israel Says, As WaPo Pushes 'Antisemitism' Cover-Up

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by Tyler Durden
Friday, Sep 15, 2023 - 05:00 PM

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office has confirmed that he'll meet with Elon Musk when he travels to San Francisco next week, part of a broader US trip in which he's scheduled to address the UN General Assembly meeting in New York, and meet on the sidelines with US President Joe Biden (which falls far short of the hoped-for invitation to the White House, which has still yet to happen since the PM took office).

An official representing Netanyahu's office emphasized that the Monday Silicon Valley meeting with Musk and other tech leaders is all about discussing artificial intelligence. But The Washington Post and other major outlets are busy trying to hype it as but PR damage control, with headlines linking the meeting to raging controversy over charges of antisemitism. 

The WaPo in a Thursday report framed the whole initiative, without presenting any verifiable evidence, as follows: "The meeting is the latest step in a campaign by Musk’s Jewish friends and allies, and executives of his social media company, to stave off the mounting controversy, according to five people familiar with the situation, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to share behind-the-scenes conversations."

And the report referenced the first round of controversy earlier this past summer, writing, "This summer, Netanyahu smoothed things over in a conversation with Musk after the X owner repeated antisemitic tropes about Jewish financier George Soros."

But at the time, the very Israeli minister in charge of combating antisemitism, Diaspora Affairs Minister Amichai Chikli, had this to say

"As Israel’s minister who’s entrusted on 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."

Chikli continued pushing back, referencing some Musk posts on X: "Criticism of Soros – who finances the most hostile organizations to the Jewish people and the state of Israel is anything but antisemitism, quite the opposite!" the Israeli minister said.

But again, with this upcoming meeting the Israeli government itself is emphasizing that Netanyahu as "a champion of Israel's high tech sector" wants to advance the conversation on innovation with leading AI and tech moguls in the US.

Regardless, critics are now attacking Netanyahu for "enabling hate" by holding such a visible meeting with Musk on his US tour. The WaPo report suggests as much too, and takes the form of a hit piece rather than objective legitimate reporting.

The Times of Israel is meanwhile reporting on planned protests set for Monday:

Israelis in San Francisco said they intended to protest the meeting.

"It’s deeply disturbing that Benjamin Netanyahu, leader of the world’s only Jewish state, is flying across America to seek the counsel and support from a notorious enabler of anti-Jewish hate speech," Offir Gutelzon, an Israeli tech entrepreneur in Silicon Valley, told The Washington Post.

This also as the ADL keeps up the pressure on Musk, stoking the controversy by saying that Jews are frequently targets of "hateful anti-Zionist, and antisemitic invectives" on X, formerly known as Twitter - ultimately blaming Musk.

Among the difficulties to the claims that Netanyahu's meeting with Musk is all about powerful, influential Jews and the Israeli government supposedly running cover for Musk is that fact that these types of trips (by a head of state) are typically weeks in planning.

This latest spat with the ADL only flared up with greater intensity this month, and mostly in the last week as the ADL's public statements attacking the billionaire Tesla and SpaceX owner become more pronounced. The timing is also curious given the recent polls showing Trump's support outpacing Biden's going into the 2024 election. Musk this week had some things to say about this during a virtual address to the "All-In summit" in Los Angeles...

It also remains that Musk-Netanyahu cooperation on AI has been long in process: "In June, Netanyahu also announced that he was setting up a team to formulate Israel’s policy on artificial intelligence after conversations with Musk and OpenAI CEO Sam Altman. Netanyahu has said he wants to make Israel a world leader in AI," Israeli media has previously confirmed.