All Jews look alike? Def Jam founder confuses 'longtime friend' Peres with Sharon

Russell Simmons brings "friendship" with Peres into question, tweeting as though Sharon and Peres are one and the same.

January 12, 2014 20:08
2 minute read.
Russell Simmons

Russell Simmons. (photo credit: REUTERS/Fred Prouser )


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


Hip hop mogul Russell Simmons’s more than 300,000 Twitter followers were surprised to learn late Saturday night that the Def Jam co-founder considered former prime minister Ariel Sharon a friend.

Then again, maybe it wasn’t such a surprise in light of photos of Sharon with Michael Jackson that cropped up across social media.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.

In any case, Simmons tweeted “R.I.P. my friend Ariel Sharon great pleasure working with you, special occasions your work to promote tolerance was inspiring (sic).”

Soon after, the Phat Farm owner responded to an inquiry by The Jerusalem Post on Twitter as to the nature of his work with Sharon as follows: “Confused Ariel Sharon with longtime friend, Shimon Peres. Certainly was no fan of Sharon. Sorry for mistake.”

Simmons’ response also came after many anti-Israel tweets in response to his original message, calling Sharon a murderer, comparing him to former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein and Hitler, and using the foul language that is common to Twitter arguments.

In a subsequent tweet, Simmons further clarified that he was “on stair master…a little light headed. Confused ariel Sharon with longtime friend, shimon peres. Sadly Sharon promoted war, not peace.”


Many responded by questioning Simmons’s friendship with Peres, considering that he and Sharon don’t particularly resemble one another.

One sarcastic tweet read: “Totally understand, man. Us Jews all look alike.”

On Sunday morning, Simmons tweeted about the Foundation of Ethnic Understanding, which promotes Muslim- Jewish relations and black-Jewish relations.

“Very proud of the work, as Chairman of FFEUny, we do around the world to promote a more peaceful relationship between Muslims and Jews,” Simmons tweeted. “Last year, I spoke at Shimon Peres’ conference in Israel about our work at the FFEUny to bring Jews and Muslims together in peace.”

Simmons came under fire last year while showing his friendship at a panel on Muslim-Jewish relations at Peres’s Presidential Conference.

The hip hop personage said Anti-Defamation League national director Abraham Foxman alienated African Americans, just like Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan alienated Jewish people.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
August 31, 2014
Prime minister to Channel 1: I’ll be running again in next election

By Gil Stern Stern HOFFMAN