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During an appearance on conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’ show, Ye – the rapper formerly known as Kanye West – doubled down on a string of anti-Semitic comments he’s made in recent months. Ye appeared on the show alongside Nick Fuentes, the white nationalist internet personality. The couple had dinner with former President Donald Trump last week.
A few hours later, Twitter CEO Elon Musk announced that Ye’s Twitter account was suspended. The move came after the rapper reportedly tweeted an image of a swastika depicted inside a Star of David.
On Jones’ Thursday show, Ye’s statements were among his most brazen. “I see good things about Hitler,” Ye said during the nearly 3-hour interview. Later, he turned to Holocaust denial.
“It was a mask moment, to hear Ye say bluntly that he admired Hitler,” said Megan Squire, deputy director of data analysis at the Southern Poverty Law Center. Often, extremists talk about the subject of Nazism, she said, expressing true beliefs in masked language to avoid being banned from mainstream platforms. Pushing Boundaries, Squire said, provides a licensing structure for other far-right voices.
The recent spate of anti-Semitic comments began in October, when Ye posted “I will die con 3 about JEWS.” The tweet has deleted since. Ye later spoke on a number of podcasts and interview shows, repeating his talking points and promoting his bid for the presidency in 2024.
Before decamping to fringe channels specializing in extremist rhetoric, Ye made an appearance in an interview with Fox News’ Tucker Carlson. He took the opportunity to air his anti-abortion stance and his grievances with the fashion industry. But soon after, Vice News revealed that the show’s producers cut Ye’s references to his beliefs that aligned with Black Hebrew Israelites.
Most recently, Ye and Fuentes appeared on right-wing podcaster Tim Pool’s show. After Pool questioned his use of the word “they” to hiss a Jewish conspiracy theory, Ye walked out.
Ye’s hate speech cost him dearly. In October, Adidas ended a deal with Ye, stripping him of his billionaire status. After Thursday’s interview with Alex Jones, a spokesperson for the right-wing social media website Parler confirmed to NPR that Ye’s previous deal to buy the platform fell through.