Musk vs. Soros: The Tweet Heard ‘Round the World

Twitter owner Elon Musk stirs controversy with a tweet comparing George Soros to comic-book villain Magneto. Dive into this trivia-filled account of the Musk Vs. Soros clash and its impact on social media.

George Soros, a Holocaust-surviving Jewish-born investor, and philanthropist, is often the target of far-right, anti-Semitic conspiracy theories. According to a regulatory filing, Soros Fund Management LLC sold all of its 2.5 million shares of Tesla Inc. in the first quarter of 2023. This prompted Musk to tweet on May 16, 2023: “Soros is a traitor to humanity and a threat to our planet,” comparing him to the X-Men’s civilization-crushing Magneto. Here are the facts.

1. The Billionaires: A Philanthropist and a Tech Mogul

Musk Vs. Soros: Elon Musk attempts to explain
Musk Vs. Soros: Elon Musk attempts to explain. Screenshot: CNBC

George Soros, a Jewish-born investor, and philanthropist, is no stranger to controversy, often the target of far-right, anti-Semitic conspiracy theories. Meanwhile, Elon Musk, tech tycoon and Twitter’s new owner has a reputation for stirring up the Twitterverse with his unconventional views and radical changes to the platform.

2. The Unlikely Marvel Connection

In a plot twist worthy of a Marvel comic, on May 16, 2023, Musk dropped a tweet comparing Soros to Magneto, the metal-manipulating mutant. For those living under a rock (or who are just DC fans), Magneto is a Marvel villain. He is a Jewish Holocaust survivor with a deep grudge against humanity. Coincidence or a deliberate jab? We’ll leave that up to you.

3. A Tesla Sale and a Netflix Buy

Tesla, Paris Motor Show 2018
Photo: Matti Blume, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Before we dive deeper into this tweetstorm, let’s go back to May 12, 2023. Soros Fund Management decided to part ways with its Tesla stake and cozy up to Netflix instead. It also bought 1.2 million shares of Lucid Motors Inc., a competitor in the electric vehicle market.

4. A Tweet That Shook the Twitterverse

Fast forward to May 16, Elon Musk tweets about Soros, painting him as the civilization-crushing Magneto. He further accuses Soros of hating humanity. Did Musk’s tweet have a touch of sour grapes? Or was it just another day in the life of one of tech’s most unpredictable personalities?

5. Civil Rights Organizations React

George Soros
George Soros. Photo: Niccolò Caranti, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Several civil rights organizations didn’t see the humor in Musk’s tweet, though. The Anti-Defamation League (ADL), for instance, condemned Musk’s tweets, calling them “dangerous” and warning they could “embolden extremists.” Musk’s representation of Soros as a supervillain was seen as fueling anti-Semitism, and not everyone was buying his “just stating my opinion” defense.

6. Musk Stands His Ground

Musk has stood by his tweet despite the backlash, maintaining that his comment was not anti-Semitic but simply an opinion about a “controversial figure.” He has asserted that he’s “not afraid to speak my mind” and will “continue to do so.”

The Twitter Quiz

News Trivia Time: Now that you know all the facts about the Musk vs. Soros incident, how about a news quiz?

Twitter/X Quick Quiz

Social Media Quiz: 14 Multiple-choice general knowledge questions about Twitter/X. No time-limit. How smart are you today?

1 / 14

1. Elon Musk bought Twitter. For how much?

Screenshot: TED on YouTube

2 / 14

2. What is Twitter Blue?

3 / 14

3. Which of these happened within 12 hours of Elon Musk’s purchase of Twitter?

Photo: Elon Musk (@elonmusk) / Twitter

4 / 14

4. After testing if his Twitter account was unblocked in Nov. 2022, Ye tweeted what?

Screenshot: X17onlineVideo – YouTube

5 / 14

5. Effective Nov. 23, 2022, Twitter is no longer enforcing which policy?

Image: using Dall-E

6 / 14

6. According to a leaked memo, only 6 months after its acquisition, what does Elon Musk value Twitter at?

Screenshot: Tesla – YouTube

7 / 14

7. What makes Linda Yaccarino a trailblazer as Twitter’s new CEO?

Screenshot: NBCUniversal

8 / 14

8. What did Twitter do in Turkey before the presidential election?

Screenshot: Channel 4 News – YouTube

9 / 14

9. What made Elon Musk lash out at George Soros on Twitter?

Screenshot: CNBC interview with David Faber

10 / 14

10. How long was the first Tucker on Twitter episode?

Screenshot: Tucker Carlson (@TuckerCarlson) – Twitter

11 / 14

11. What did Twitter, under Elon Musk’s watchful eye, decide to limit starting July 1, 2023?

Illustration: & DALL-E

12 / 14

12. In the digital soap opera of X (formerly Twitter), who did Elon Musk accuse of trying to “strangle” the platform?

Screenshot: Tesla Owners Silicon Valley – X

13 / 14

13. According to Elon Musk, how many monthly users does Twitter/X have?

Screenshot: Reuters – YouTube

14 / 14

14. Which of these happened when Elon Musk tweeted his agreement with a statement accusing Jewish people of “hating white people”?

Screenshot: Lex Fridman Podcast – YouTube

Challenge your friends to see if any of them can do any better!

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We cross-checked our Musk vs. Soros facts with the world’s leading news outlets.