Elon Musk apologized on Wednesday for what he dubbed his “dumbest” ever social media post in an interview with mainstream media, his first since his antisemitic remark on X earlier this month. However, he took offense with sponsors quitting his platform due to an increase in antisemitism on X.
At the New York Times DealBook Summit in New York, he declared, “I don’t want them to advertise.” “Go f**k yourself if someone is trying to blackmail me with money or publicity.” F**k off. You yourself,” he murmured. Is that understood correctly? He continued, addressing Disney CEO Bob Iger, who had spoken earlier at the conference on Wednesday, saying, “Hey Bob, if you’re in the audience, that’s how I feel.”
Disney did not answer a request for comment about Musk’s statements right away.
The CEO of X, Linda Yaccarino, was seated in the audience as Musk spoke. Yaccarino was hired by the business to court well-known sponsors once more.
During a convoluted discussion that went for more than an hour, Musk said that he doesn’t mind being despised. “Go hate,” he murmured. “The need to be liked is a true weakness.
This month, a number of well-known companies stopped running advertisements on X, the old name of Twitter, in response to Musk’s open endorsement of a conspiracy theory that is supported by White nationalists and is considered antisemitic.
Media firms including Disney, Paramount, NBCUniversal, Comcast, Lionsgate, and Warner Bros. Discovery—the parent company of CNN—were among many that left the advertising industry.
However, he said that his widely condemned antisemitic post could be “the worst” thing he has ever done.
“Look, I apologize for that post,” he said. “I was dumb to do that. It may be the poorest and silliest post I’ve ever made out of the 30,000. And even if I’ve done my best to explain myself in six different ways by Sunday, I think it will be clear that, far from being antisemitic, I am really philosemitic.
This week, Musk traveled to Israel, where he met with President Isaac Herzog and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as well as visited a kibbutz that was attacked on October 7 by Hamas.
On Wednesday, however, Musk clarified that his visit to Israel “wasn’t an apology tour” and that it “wasn’t in response to all of that.” Musk claimed to be a decent man, but he won’t “tap dance” to prove it to others.
Speaking to Netanyahu about the latest assaults, Musk stated on Monday that “the propaganda that is preparing people to commit murder in the future must stop; those who are intent on murder must be neutralized; and Gaza must become prosperous.” I anticipate a bright future if that occurs. I would be happy to assist.
However, in a different discussion at the DealBook Summit, Herzog didn’t seem to be sure Musk would continue to use consistent messaging.
Herzog remarked, “I thought our open and honest conversation was interesting and beneficial to both of us.” “I really hope that in the near future, we will see some of [his activism against antisemitism].”