“For a long time I said that antisemitism, particularly on the American left, was not as bad as people claimed,” Altman wrote on his X social media account on Thursday.
“I’d like to just state that I was totally wrong.”
Altman appeared at a loss to explain the phenomenon, writing: “I still don’t understand it, really. Or know what to do about it.”
“But it is so f–ked,” he wrote.
Altman, who was reinstated last month as OpenAI CEO after he was ousted by the company board in a protracted and highly publicized power struggle, is the latest business titan to condemn antisemitism.
Bill Ackman, the billionaire hedge fund manager, has been vocal in demanding the resignations of the heads of top universities, including at UPenn and Harvard, due to their refusal to condemn calls to kill Jews.
College campuses have been roiled these past two months in the wake of the Oct. 7 attack by Hamas terrorists against Israel, which claimed the lives of 1,200 people.
Earlier this week, the presidents of Harvard, UPenn, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology were called before a Congressional committee to answer questions about what was being done to combat antisemitism on campuses.
Ackman demanded that all three heads — Harvard President Claudine Gay, UPenn President Liz Magill, and MIT President Sally Kornbluth — “resign in disgrace” after they were asked whether calls to commit genocide against Jews violated campus speech policies.
“It can be [a violation], depending on the context,” Gay told lawmakers on Tuesday. Magill and Kornbluth gave similar responses.
“In short, they said: It ‘depends on the context’ and ‘whether the speech turns into conduct,’ that is, actually killing Jews,” Ackman wrote on his X social media account.
Ackman wrote that the presidents were guilty of “profound educational, moral and ethical failures that pervade certain of our elite educational institutions due in large part to their failed leadership.”
“If a CEO of one of our companies gave a similar answer, he or she would be toast within the hour,” Ackman wrote.
Ackman also shared a post by Pfier CEO Albert Bourla, who said he was “ashamed” by what he heard from the university presidents.
“In my personal opinion, it was one of the most despicable moments in the history of US academia,” Bourla wrote, noting that it made him think of his family who died in the Holocaust.
“The memories of my father’s parents, Abraham and Rachel Bourla, his brother David and his little sister Graciela, who all died in Auschwitz, came to mind.”
Jon Huntsman Jr, the former Utah governor who also served as ambassador to China and Russia, threatened to stop donating to his alma mater, UPenn, unless the school “completely cut ties with its current leadership.”