During a recent trip to Israel, Canadian YouTube personality Gavin McInnes said that his visit was making him anti-Semitic, that Israelis have a “whiny paranoid fear of Nazis,” and that Jews were ultimately responsible for World War II.
His comments drew praise from white nationalist leaders.
McInnes, a co-founder of Vice Magazine, which he left in 2008, and star of Canada’s Rebel Media, a political commentary platform, recorded several videos of his thoughts on Israel and Jews based on his trip.
Vice clarified that McInnes has not worked for the company fore nearly a decade and they have nothing to do with his later work, including these videos.
In one video posted Saturday, McInnes, sitting in what appears to be his hotel room, says he thinks his trip was funded by the Israeli government and private Israeli donors “that assume we’re going to listen to all this shit we get fed.” But, he added, “That’s having the reverse effect on me: I’m becoming anti-Semitic.”
Describing a visit to the Yad Vashem memorial museum, he uses air quotes: “Like at the Holocaust museum, or the ‘Holocaust’ museum — no, I’m just kidding.”
He says that his trip to Yad Vashem pushed him to defend Holocaust deniers.
“I felt myself defending the super far-right Nazis just because I was sick of so much brainwashing and I felt like going, ‘Well, they never said it didn’t happen. What they’re saying is it was much less than six million and that they starved to death and weren’t gassed, that they didn’t have supplies,” McInnes says in the video.
“I’m not saying it wasn’t gassing. Please don’t take that clip out of context, but that’s what the far-right nuts are saying.”
“There’s been a lot of genocides,” he continues. “Mao killed 70 million… Stalin, with the Bolsheviks, killed 30 million. But the Russians don’t talk about that. They don’t even necessarily see it as a horrible thing.”
He then goes on to blame the Jews for the death by starvation of millions of Ukrainians under Stalin. “I think it was ten million Ukrainians who were killed. That was by Jews. That was by Marxist, Stalinist, left-wing, commie, socialist Jews,” he says, laughing.
He also appears to blame the Jews for World War II, saying, “Wasn’t the Treaty of Versailles, wasn’t that disproportionately influenced by Jewish intellectuals?”
“Don’t get me wrong,” he chuckles, “I’m not pro-Holocaust.”
White supremacists David Duke and Richard Spencer tweeted McInnes’s video.
— David Duke (@DrDavidDuke) March 12, 2017
He also uploaded a video on Tuesday titled “10 Things I Hate About Jews,” which was subsequently retitled as “10 Things I Hate About Israel.”
Gavin's a straight shooter, fam. https://t.co/4FfLtHfepD
— Richard 🥛 Spencer (@RichardBSpencer) March 11, 2017
In the video an apparently drunk McInnes, wearing an undershirt, stumbles down a Tel Aviv street ranting about Israel. In addition to comments about such issues as Hebrew “spit-talk,” which is “like Gaza — they’re launching little tiny missiles from your mouth onto your shirt,” he complains about the Jews’ “whiny paranoid fear of Nazis.” Number nine on his list is that Israelis don’t support US President Donald Trump, saying that they are “scared of Christians and Trump who are their biggest allies.”
McInnes also appears upset by Jews’ ostensible lack of gratitude to Americans after the Holocaust.
“Sorry we didn’t do it in time, but we still saved you,” he says. “It’s like a black guy going, ‘Yeah, white people did slavery’… well they didn’t start it but they did end it… so maybe be a little more positive about it?”
In a follow-up video recorded in the airport upon returning to Canada, McInness says that he was shocked to find that his views had been retweeted by the likes of Duke and Spencer.
“I landed, and I’ve got tons of Nazi friends. David Duke and all the Nazis totally think I rock,” he says to the camera. “No offense, Nazis, I don’t want to hurt your feelings, but I don’t like you. I like Jews.”
He also claims that his earlier videos were taken out of context, and that he was not stating his own opinion but rather citing Nazi views, which he had hoped Jews would refute.
He adds that it should be very clear where he stands on Israel. “I don’t like their capitulation. I don’t like their constant apologizing,” he says in the video. “I wish Israelis would embrace Christianity and Trump more. Love your wall, love Trump’s wall.”
McInnes also offers scathing criticism of the Palestinians, claiming that the PLO refused to meet with him and that one Palestinian he met did nothing but complain. He tweeted that the refugee camps are “nice neighborhoods.”
I did go see the "camps." They look like nice neighborhoods (same w "settlements"). The "refugees" are the descendants of refugees. https://t.co/kOo9QmWLgL
— Gavin McInnes (@Gavin_McInnes) March 13, 2017
McInnes was co-founder of Vice Magazine, which he left in 2008. He was a frequent guest on Fox News though last month, in an episode of his YouTube show, he announced his resignation from the station. He is now a regular contributor to online Rebel Media, which is a right-wing Canadian online political and social commentary media platform founded by Ezra Levant. Most of McInnes’s shows are behind a paywall.
He has been referred to as one of the “primary architects of hipsterdom.”