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Jewish Journal

Nash Denies Anti-Semitism

by Tom Tugend

March 21, 2002 | 7:00 pm

John Forbes Nash

John Forbes Nash

John Forbes Nash, the brilliant mathematician whose life is portrayed in the Oscar-nominated movie, "A Beautiful Mind," has denied allegations that he hates Jews, during a March 17 interview with Mike Wallace on "60 Minutes."

"Everyone with whom I have talked to who knows John, everyone says 'no, he didn't feel that way about Jews at all,'" Wallace said.

Nash's wife, Alicia, who has known her husband for more than 50 years, agreed that, "I never heard him say anything like that."

As the bitterly contested Oscar race enters the home stretch, with winners to be announced March 24, the allegations of Nash's anti-Semitism and homosexual liaisons -- the latter also denied -- have become a cause celebré in Hollywood. Among those who have rushed to the defense of Nash and the movie's integrity has been New York Times reporter and Columbia University journalism teacher Sylvia Nasar, author of the Nash biography, who noted that Nash's most ardent champions have been Israeli and Jewish American mathematicians.

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