Why is Columbia giving the Jew-hating Mahathir a stage?
ROMY RONEN and MICHALE SCHUELER
Times of Israel
Wednesday, Mahathir Mohamad, the prime minister of Malaysia, is expected to address Columbia’s World Leaders Forum.
Mahathir has a long history of blatant anti-Semitism and fear mongering. According to a 2012 post on his blog, Mahathir is “proud to be labeled anti-Semitic.” In his autobiography, A Doctor in the House, he claims that “Jews are not merely hook-nosed, but understand money instinctively.” Mahathir has also used known tropes of Holocaust denial to make political points, stating in one BBC interview that “you cannot even mention that in the Holocaust it was not six million [Jews killed in the Holocaust].” In 1997, Mahathir gave a speech claiming that the failure of the ringgit was due to a “Jewish agenda” led by Holocaust survivor and philanthropist George Soros, peddling anti-Semitic tropes of “Jewish money” and a worldwide Jewish conspiracy in order to placate his constituents.
It is true that the First Amendment guarantees that any individual, including Prime Minister Mahathir, has the right to speak his mind without government censure. It does not mean that a person can say anything without social or academic consequences. Speaking at Columbia University is a privilege, not a right....