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December 12, 2022 5:01 pm
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Hitler-Praising Kanye West Named ‘Antisemite of the Year’ by Nonprofit

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avatar by Dion J. Pierre

Rapper Kanye West holding rally in support of his presidential bid in North Charleston, South Carolina, U.S. July 19, 2020. REUTERS/Randall Hill/File Photo

Kanye West has been named 2022’s “Antisemite of the Year,” by StopAntisemitism, an American nonprofit organization.

“Kanye West’s threats of violence, hateful conduct, and hate speech all led to his winning this year’s title,” the group said on Sunday. “Despite losing the vast majority of his fortune, being booted from social media, and ostracized from his social circles, West continued spreading his antisemitism.”

Beginning in October, West has uttered the most invective, antisemitic comments ever said by an American celebrity, blaming “Jewish Zionists” for his erratic behavior, declining stardom, and divorce from Kim Kardashian. He has not formally apologized for his remarks and continues to insist that they are divinely inspired.

Earlier this month, West appeared on Alex Jones’ live streamed show, titled InfoWars, alongside the Holocaust-denying-alt-right figure Nick Fuentes —who, in 2019, used the “analogy” of “baked cookies” to dispute the number of Jews killed in the Holocaust — and confirmed longstanding rumors that he admires Adolf Hitler. The appearance followed a dinner he and Fuentes attended with former President Donald Trump, an engagement that prompted condemnation from Jewish and non-Jewish leaders across the political spectrum.

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“I see good things about Hitler,” West told Jones. “We have to stop insulting Nazis all the time.”

West, who legally changed his name to “Ye” in 2021, made similar comments on a show hosted by Proud Boys founder Gavin McInnes, saying, “Jewish people, forgive Hitler today. Let it go. Let it go, and stop trying to force it on other people.”

West’s career peaked in 2007, when he released Graduation, which, according to the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) has sold 5 million album equivalent units in the United States. His efforts since then, however, have been criticized for being inconsistent, delayed by many months, or failing to match the blockbuster success of earlier releases. West’s last three albums have combined sold just over 500,000 physical copies in the US, while his first, The College Dropout, released in 2004, alone sold 4 million.

Andrew Bernard contributed reporting to this story.

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