Google has removed it’s the head of Diversity, Kamau Bobb, after a 2007 blog post of his resurfaced saying Jewish people had “an insatiable appetite for war and killing.”
In a recently deleted post about the Israeli-Palestinain conflict that resurfaced this week. Mr. Bobb also claimed that Jewish people had an “insensitivity” to suffering. On Thursday, a spokesperson for Google told the BBC that Mr Bobb would “no longer be part of our diversity team going forward.” They state that “We unequivocally condemn the past writings by a member of our diversity team that are causing deep offence and pain to members of our Jewish community.”
“This has come at at a time where we’ve seen an alarming increase in anti-Semitic attacks,” the spokesperson added. “Anti-Semitism… has no place in society and we stand with our Jewish community in condemning it. These writings are unquestionably hurtful. The author acknowledges this and has apologized. He will no longer be part of our diversity team… and will focus on his Stem [science, technology, engineering and maths] work.”
The 2007 post was titled as “If I were a Jew”, wherein he gave his opinion on how the Jewish people should feel about the Isreal-Palestinian conflict. “If I were a Jew I would be concerned about my insatiable appetite for war and killing in defence of myself,” he wrote. “Self-defence is undoubtedly an instinct, but I would be afraid of my increasing insensitivity to the suffering [of] others.”
Michael Dickson, head of the pro-Israel organisation Stand With Us, tweeted that the blog made “revolting, and anti-Semitic, comparisons between Nazi actions and that of the world’s only Jewish country”.
The US-based Simon Wiesenthal Center, meanwhile, also called for Bobb to be removed from his post. Bobb has not publicly responded to the criticism.
However, according to the New York Post, he emailed the Jewish staff group at Google to apologize. “What I wrote crudely characterized the entire Jewish community. What was intended as a critique of particular military action fed into anti-Semitic tropes and prejudice,” he reportedly wrote in the email. “I think we can all agree, there is no easy solution to this situation. But that’s beside the point,” he added. “The way I expressed my views on that conflict were hurtful.”