The Jewish Journal included B'nai B'rith International's tweet calling out Kamau Bobb, Google’s Global Lead for Diversity Strategy and Research, for his offensive 2007 blog post, "If I Were A Jew."
Kamau Bobb, Google’s Global Lead for Diversity Strategy and Research, is under fire for a 2007 blog post in which he said if he were Jewish, he would be concerned about Israel’s “insatiable appetite for vengeful violence.”
The post, which was first unearthed by the Washington Free Beacon, began with the following: “If I were a Jew today, my sensibilities would be tormented. I would find it increasingly difficult to reconcile the long cycles of oppression that Jewish people have endured and the insatiable appetite for vengeful violence that Israel, my homeland, has now acquired. This reconciliation would be particularly difficult now, in November, 79 years after Kristallnacht – the Night of Broken Glass.”
Bobb’s post went on to criticize Israel for invoking “collective punishment” against the Gaza Strip and for “destroying buildings and breaking the glass” in the West Bank. The post eventually concluded: “If I were a Jew I would be concerned about my insatiable appetite for war and killing in defense of myself. Self defense is undoubtedly an instinct, but I would be afraid of my increasing insensitivity to the suffering others. My greatest torment would be that I’ve misinterpreted the identity offered by my history and transposed spiritual and human compassion with self righteous impunity.”
Jewish groups condemned Bobb’s blog post. The Simon Wiesenthal Center tweeted that Google should “fire this #antisemite.” Stop Antisemitism similarly tweeted, “How is the obscene, antisemitic bigot still employed there?”
B’nai Brith International similarly tweeted that Bobb’s post was “appalling.” “How did #Google promote someone with such hateful, anti-Semitic views to lead their diversity strategy?”
StandWithUs Israel Executive Director Michael Dickson tweeted that Bobb also wrote a blog post about how if he were an Arab, “the ability of the United States and Israel to not only dictate the terms of my subjugation, but characterize my desire to be free as rooted in hatred would burn.” The post also stated that “you cannot beat a people and demand that they not fight back in order to peacefully negotiate an end to the beating.”
“All of this begs the question whether (1) @Google did due diligence when selecting @kamaubobb for the sensitive position of global Google DEI (diversity, equity and inclusion) Director and (2) whether he should remain in these positions,” Dickson tweeted. “@Google – what say you?”
Meghan McCain, co-host of ABC’s “The View,” said during a June 2 segment that Google “should’ve googled him” and that she’s tired of “having the conversation over and over about why antisemitism is the last passable form of bigotry in the United States.” “If they said this about Black people, or Asian people, or LGBT people, he would be fired already. And he’s not, which says that Google’s okay with a little bit of soft antisemitism.”
Tablet Magazine senior writer Yair Rosenberg, on the other hand, argued that Bobb should have been “given a chance to account for how he’s changed/grown over the last 10 years when it comes to understanding Jewish people” and he could have “emerged as a better ally… instead, we get gotcha pieces in conservative outlets that aren’t interested in helping people empathize with each other and move beyond past problems, but rather in fashioning 10-year-old errors into the latest ammo in a culture war.”
The New York Post reported that they obtained an email from Bobb to Google’s “Jewgler” Employee Resource Group stating that he was “deeply sorry” for the post. “What I wrote crudely characterized the entire jewish community. what was intended as a critique of particular military action fed into antisemitic tropes and prejudice. i think we can all agree, there is no easy solution to this situation. but that’s beside the point. the way I expressed my views on that conflict were hurtful.”
Google did not respond to the Journal’s request for comment.
B'nai B'rith International live tweeted U.S. President Barack Obama's State of the Union address, responding to items of particular interest to the organization's policy advocacy.
Read a recap of the tweets, below:
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