James Murdoch, the chief executive officer of 21st Century Fox, has spoken out against US President Donald Trump’s controversial reaction to the violence in Charlottesville.
Mr Murdoch, the younger son of Fox News chairman Rupert Murdoch, has written a memo to colleagues calling the deadly violence and Trump’s response to it a concern to “all of us as Americans and free people”.
“The presence of hate in our society was appallingly laid bare as we watched swastikas brandished on the streets of Charlottesville and acts of brutal terrorism and violence perpetrated by a racist mob,” Mr Murdoch wrote in the strongly-worded message.
“I can’t even believe I have to write this: standing up to Nazis is essential; there are no good Nazis. Or Klansmen, or terrorists. Democrats, Republicans, and others must all agree on this, and it compromises nothing for them to do so.”
One woman died and 19 others were injured when a car crashed into counter-protesters at a white nationalist rally last weekend.
Mr Murdoch, whose company also owns Fox News which is a strong supporter of Mr Trump, was not the only high-profile CEO to criticise the president.
Apple CEO Tim Cook sent a message to staff which stridently condemned the violence in Charlottesville.
“Hate is a cancer,” Cook wrote in the memo, published by Buzzfeed.
“I disagree with the president and others who believe that there is a moral equivalence between white supremacists and Nazis, and those who oppose them by standing up for human rights. Equating the two runs counter to our ideals as Americans.”
Mr Trump drew ire on Saturday when he said there was violence on “many sides” when referring to the Charlottesville tragedy, failing to call out white supremacists, neo-Nazis, and other hate groups by name. It took him two days to do so, issuing a statement condemning the groups on Monday.
But the president appeared to backtrack on Tuesday blaming “both sides” for the violence.
Following this several CEOs resigned from his Manufacturing Council, before both that group and his Strategy and Policy Forum dissolved altogether.