Elon Musk on Thursday doubled down on his criticism of billionaire financier George Soros, saying the progressive philanthropist supports elected officials whose policies hurt American cities.
Musk, 51, compared Soros, 92, to X-Men supervillain Magneto – a character who manipulates the world and thinks mutants should be in charge, rather than humans.
He made the comments on Twitter on Monday, following news that Soros’ investment fund had sold all of its Tesla shares.
Soros, a Hungarian-born billionaire, runs the Open Society Foundation and is a Holocaust survivor.
Musk has been accused of peddling anti-Semitic tropes about Jews pulling the strings and controlling the world, and in a bizarre interview Tuesday with CNBC, he added fuel to the fire.
On Thursday, Musk returned to the theme, saying he had issues with Soros’ philanthropy.
Elon Musk was interviewed on CNBC on Tuesday and asked about his remarks about George Soros, giving a bizarre rambling answer
George Soros, a Hungarian-born billionaire, runs the Open Society Foundation and is a Holocaust survivor. His foundation supports progressive politicians
Musk responded to Jonathan Greenblatt, CEO of the Anti-Defamation League, saying the South African-born billionaire was not anti-Semitic, but his comments were dangerous.
“He is arguably the most influential person on the planet controlling what is essentially our public square. When he repeats conspiracy theories, it feeds extremists,” Greenblatt said.
Musk replied, “In all honesty, I have to admit Joel is right and I will try to be more thoughtful in the future.”
He then corrected to tweet to say “Jonathan”.
Musk continued, “The comic book analogies are obviously flawed, to say the least.
‘Just because George Soros can bend metal using his mind doesn’t mean he’s Magneto!!
“Anyway, my real concern with Soros is that he has funded so many politicians and prosecutors who are soft on even violent crime, which has caused great damage to many cities imo.
“Also, while I’m very much in favor of expanding legal immigration, we need to check who’s coming in, so we don’t allow dangerous criminals to prey on innocent Americans.”
In a statement on Tuesday, Israel’s Foreign Ministry said Musk’s tweet sparked a flood of conspiracy theories and the hashtag “Jews” became a trend on the platform.
During his bizarre interview with CNBC’s David Faber, Musk was asked about his Soros tweets and responded by going on a bizarre tangent about the 1987 fairy tale adventure The Princess Bride.
“I’ll say what I want to say and if it results in losing money, so be it,” Musk said.
Musk tells Faber: “I said he reminds me of Magneto, you know how to calm people down.”
Faber asks, “When you do something like that, why share it? Why share it when people who buy Teslas may disagree with you, advertisers on Twitter may disagree with you, why share it widely?
Musk responds: “Freedom of speech, I have the right to say whatever I want.”
Faber told him, “It puts you in the middle of a partisan divide in the country, it makes you a lightning rod for criticism. Do you like it?
Musk has said he’s a ‘pro-Semite’, and after a long awkward silence totaling 12 seconds, he launches into a bizarre tirade and quotes the 1987 film The Princess Bride.
‘I remember a scene in The Princess Bride, where he confronts the person who kills his father.
‘He said, ‘Give me some money. Give me the power. I do not care’.’
Musk then said, “I’ll say what I want to say and if the consequence of that is losing money, so be it.”
In response, Israel’s Foreign Ministry tweeted: “The phrase ‘Jews’ jumped onto the list of trending topics on Twitter today following an anti-Semitic tweet from none other than the social network’s owner and CEO, Elon Musk.
Musk did not explain the reasoning behind his outburst, but the tweet was posted on Monday shortly after a regulatory filing revealed Soros’ family office had divested its entire stake in Tesla.
Musk’s tweet immediately sparked a flood of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories on Twitter.
“Unfortunately, Twitter is not doing anything to address this issue.”
David Saranga, director of the digital diplomacy office at Israel’s foreign ministry, tweeted: “Reminds me of Niemöller’s words which are featured prominently on a wall of the Holocaust Museum in Washington.”
”First they came for the socialists, and I didn’t speak – because I was not a socialist.
”Then they came for the trade unionists and I didn’t say anything – because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for the Jews
”I didn’t speak – because I wasn’t Jewish.
“Then they came for me – and there was no one left to speak for me.”
“Niemöller’s words serve as an indictment of passivity and indifference during the Holocaust”.
Musk did not explain the reasoning behind his outburst, but the tweet was posted shortly after a regulatory filing revealed that Soros’ office had dumped its entire stake in Tesla.
Tesla shares have jumped nearly 54% year-to-date, although the value of Soros’ stake is still unclear.
Marvel’s official character description says the supervillain “fights to help mutants replace humans as the dominant species in the world.”
The character, played by Ian McKellen (left) and Michael Fassbender (right) is described as ‘witness to the must that the human race had to offer’, with his parents and sister dying in World War II before being dispatched in Auschwitz.
Greenblatt tweeted: “Soros is often held back by the far right, using anti-Semitic tropes, as the source of the world’s problems.”
“To see Elon Musk, however he intends, fueling this segment — likening him to a Jewish supervillain, saying Soros ‘hates humanity’ — isn’t just saddening, it’s dangerous.
“It will embolden extremists who are already plotting anti-Jewish conspiracies and have attempted to attack Soros and Jewish communities as a result.”
CEO of the American Jewish Committee Ted Deutch told CNN: ‘The tweet about this notion that Soros hates humanity, tries to destroy civilization just plays into the classic anti-Semitic conspiracy theory about Jewish wealth and power.
“We’ve seen anti-Semitism rise since Musk took over as Twitter helm, our own survey shows two-thirds of Jews have experienced anti-Semitism online, 85% of those under 30.
“This is unacceptable and dangerous.”
On Wednesday afternoon, Elon again refused to go back on his remarks.
In response to his original tweet, he said, “I would like to apologize for this post.”
But he quickly followed up with, “It was really unfair to Magneto.”
It comes after a study found anti-Semitic tweets skyrocketed after Musk’s takeover, a 105% increase after the $4 billion deal.