Forbes Israel boasts of power of Jewish billionaires

Israel/Palestine
Forbes Israel brags on 165 Jewish billionaires
Forbes Israel brags on 165 Jewish billionaires

The illustration is the cover of Forbes Israel. The date is April 2013. It just hit the net. The title is “The Billionaires.”  The banner on the right says, “Special Edition, 165 Jewish billionaires, 17 Israelis, 16 [Jewish] women, 812 cumulative billions (of billionaires’ wealth).”

That’s 165 out of a total of 1426 billionaires in the world, or 11%. One of us (Phil) likes to write about the new position of Jews sociologically: and out of the 50 richest people in the world, about a quarter are Jewish. Most of those Jewish billionaires appear to be American, though this is an Israeli publication.

Power and money go together, of course. The sell-line above the logo reads: “Billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov plans to replace Putin as the most powerful person in Russia.” And the article features Sheldon Adelson at #3, the man who bankrolled Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney and skewed our political debate last year way right.

The coverboy for Israel Forbes is Ron Lauder (Estee Lauder’s son — number 60 among Jews, # 376 in the world).  They have an interview with him.  His quote in blue says, “Only if we talk with the Palestinians will we able to make progress.” Cute. This guy has always been a right-winger.

According to the Hebrew article which Ira read and will bookmark here for safekeeping, of the 29 billionaires globally who are under 40, “20% are Jewish.”  (That’s 5.8 people.  For a big shot money mag, maybe they should be more exact.) 

Here and here are two English links.  The Jerusalem Post is the first link. It provides a translation of the Forbes Israel (Hebrew page). 

Of the 1,426 billionaires around the globe, 165 of them are Jews, and their joint wealth reaches the incredible amount of $812 billion… Compared with last year, the joint wealth of the 165 Jewish billionaires has grown substantially.

The Forbes Israel page lists the 165 with a bunch of interesting information. Sheldon Adelson is number three among Jews — 15th richest in el mundo— after Larry Ellison and Michael Bloomberg. Mark Zuckerberg is a lowly 16. Michael Dell is number 12. (Without even knowing this vital information, Ira has been a loyal customer of his since buying his first computer over 20 years ago.)

We wonder what kind of run the U.S. Jewish press will give this. Well, already, Adam Weinstein at Gawker reported it but in a dismissive manner. His take is, OK crazies, use this for your antisemitic theories. The Forward has a breaking news notice.  It sources the story to Hebrew Forbes, and says that they broke out the Jewish rich guys.

Ultimately this is a story about power, and about telling and/or not telling a truth which is in many ways inconvenient. Yes, it could foster anti-Semitism, but the Israeli Forbes issue also indicates the hubris about pro-Israel financial clout that is itself part of the problem.

P.S. Israeli Forbes is not a translation of the American Forbes; here is the bland American Forbes treatment of the 1426 billionaires.

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