Elon Musk, the owner of X (formerly Twitter), announced a significant policy change on Friday, targeting the use of specific antisemitic phrases on the platform, as advertisers leave in droves after he told an anti-Semite on the app that he was speaking “the actual truth.”
Musk declared that terms like “decolonization” and “from the river to the sea” are euphemisms that “necessarily imply genocide,” warning that their use could lead to suspension on X. These phrases have been commonly associated with the Free Palestine movement, and are understood to be antisemitic and eliminationist rhetoric, implying the destruction of the Jewish state and its people. Hamas has previously adopted “from the river to the sea” as a slogan.
Musk, who has described himself as a “free speech absolutist,” made the move following a series of controversial incidents on the platform, including Musk’s endorsement of a conspiracy theory perceived as antisemitic, which led to condemnation from the White House and a withdrawal of major advertisers like Apple, Disney, Lionsgate, and IBM from X.
Despite Musk’s claim to be combating antisemitism, there have been ongoing reports of sponsored content on X appearing alongside Nazi and white nationalist material. The Anti-Defamation League, a Jewish nonprofit, briefly paused but then resumed ad spending on X after a feud with Musk.
Musk’s latest policy stance on the phrases “decolonization” and “from the river to the sea” appears to be an obvious attempt to address the fallout from his engagement in far-right conspiracies about Jewish people.
(YWN World Headquarters – NYC)