Columbia U. to host antisemitic Malaysian PM

93-year-old Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has a history of making antisemitic statements.

September 21, 2019 18:36
1 minute read.
Columbia U. to host antisemitic Malaysian PM

Malaysia Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad speaks during the APEC CEO Summit 2018 at the Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, 17 November 2018. (photo credit: FAZRY ISMAIL/POOL VIA REUTERS)

Columbia University's World Leaders Forum will be hosting Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, who has a history of making antisemitic statements.

The 93-year-old leader described Jews as "hook-nosed" last October, and blaming them for creating trouble in the Middle East. "They are hook-nosed," he said in defense. "Many people called the Malays fat-nosed. We didn't object; we didn't go to war for that."

In 2003, he said that "the Europeans killed six million Jews out of 12 million. But today the Jews rule this world by proxy. They get others to fight and die for them.”

He has also said that the number of Jews killed in the Holocaust is exaggerated and that, in reality, four million were killed rather than six million.

He has also previously denied Israel's connection to Jerusalem, claiming it is a Palestinian territory. "Jerusalem has always been under Palestine, so why are they taking the initiative to divide Jerusalem not belonging to them, but to divide the Arabs and the Jews? They have no rights," Mohamad said.

In January, Mohamad announced that he would not allow any Israelis to enter Malaysia. The comment was in response to criticism after the Southeast Asian nation banned Israeli participants in the Paralympic Swimming World Championship.

"The world is talking about freedom of speech, but whenever we say anything against Israel and the Jews, it is considered antisemitism," he stated. "It is my right to criticize Israel for its policy regarding the Palestinians and say they do many bad things."

Speaking at the debate society at the UK's Cambridge University in June, Mohamad said that "not all Jews are bad" and that he had "many Jewish friends," but "most Jews support the wrong things done by Israel."

"Of course if you say something against Jews, you are labeled as antisemitic – but no other race in the world label people like that," he added.

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