On Friday, Holocaust-denying white nationalist podcaster Nick Fuentes was finally banned from Twitter. The reason for banning Fuentes — whose verified account boasted nearly 140,000 followers — is still unclear, with a Twitter spokesperson citing “repeated violations” of the social media platform’s rules.
The ban followed a recent report from the Southern Poverty Law Center which revealed the extent to which Twitter and its CEO Jack Dorsey have for years coddled right-wing extremists like Fuentes.
In response, Fuentes announced on his Telegram channel that he would be hosting a press conference the next day “within walking distance” of CPAC in Dallas, TX. Days earlier Fuentes visited Infowars headquarters in Austin where he told Alex Jones that nonwhite immigrants had been “weaponized” against America.
On Saturday evening Fuentes and his followers — dubbed the “groypers” in honor of an alt-right meme — filed into the Sheraton Hotel’s Magnolia Ballroom for a racist rally beset by technical problems.
The official livestream of the event — viewed on Fuentes’ website — crashed several times. A second livestream was broadcast on Trovo by white nationalist Ryan Sanchez. Sanchez, who goes by “Culture War Criminal,” was identified by Left Coast Right Watch as one of the men who helped topple a monolith in Atascadero, CA.
Fuentes warmed up the crowd by boasting that his Twitter ban meant he no longer needed to filter his thoughts. “The good news is this: I’m banned on Twitter, so now I have nothing left to lose,” he said. “So that means I can be racist. I can be sexist. I can be homophobic. Perhaps best of all, I can be antisemitic.”
After being told that his website’s livestream was ready he officially kicked off his speech, welcomed his supporters, and complained about the heat.
“But it’s white boy summer!” he exclaimed. “White boy summer. Pit Vipers on. Dodge Challenger in drive. We almost hit somebody in Austin.” He quickly added “What are you gonna do? You gonna rent a Dodge Challenger and not hit someone with it?”
The crowd laughed at the obvious mocking reference to Heather Heyer, an antiracist protester who was killed when a Neo-Nazi drove his Dodge Challenger into a crowd at the white supremacist “Unite the Right” rally in 2017. A rally that Nick Fuentes attended.
Fuentes then launched into a rant about his Twitter suspension — and lashed out at CPAC for choosing “America Uncancelled” as its theme. “And I saw that and my first thought is ‘Well, wait a second, but I’m cancelled. I’m cancelled by you,'” he said.
He recounted how he had been chased out of CPAC in 2019, led his audience in booing Charlie Kirk (“What a snake”), and joked about how “broken up” he was over Lone Conservative author Alec Sears getting into a car accident. And he whined that he, Michelle Malkin, Laura Loomer, and Gavin McInnes had been “cancelled” by conservatives.
Fuentes claimed that he and some other groypers looked at a list of CPAC speakers to see if any of them had been “cancelled” — that is, banned from social media platforms.
“We went down the list. We looked at every single speaker at CPAC. We put together a little graphic, if we could play that now. And we found that there is literally not one single conservative speaker — other than the former president Donald Trump — who has been cancelled.”
On the projector screen to the side a spreadsheet with the names of CPAC speakers and websites like Twitter and Facebook began to scroll. “Matt Schlapp? Banned from nothing,” he remarked. “Ben Carson? Banned I think from Facebook. That’s it. This is every other speaker at CPAC.”
He also nursed a grudge against conservatives who tanked his fundraiser with Rep. Paul Gosar. The extremist congressman had spoken at a conference organized by Fuentes in February, but apparently received enough pushback that the fundraiser was — according to Fuentes — “postponed.”
An article for the far-right Breitbart News, for example, accurately labeled Fuentes a “racist Holocaust denier.” When reached for comment by Breitbart News, Gosar denied any fundraiser with Fuentes had been scheduled, condemned “racial supremacy, ethnic nationalism, and antisemitism,” and stressed his support for Israel.
Fuentes suggested that the article — and Gosar’s disavowal of white supremacy — was the result of meddling by former Breitbart News executive chairman Steve Bannon.
“We heard a rumor — unconfirmed — but we heard a rumor that the order for that article came down from Steve Bannon himself,” he said, eliciting a chorus of boos. “Steve Bannon himself commissioned Breitbart to go to Representative Gosar to disavow me and say that they would never do an event with me ever again.”
When he was done listing grievances against conservatives, Fuentes devoted the rest of his speech to doubling down on bigotry against Black people, immigrants, women, and Jews.
He told his audience that the “racial disparities that we see in this country cannot be explained by systemic discrimination” and that efforts to fix those disparities will culminate in the “dispossession and disenfranchisement of white Americans.” He claimed that white people are “being replaced by nonwhite immigrants and their children.”
He compared Chicago’s South Side, which is 93% Black, to Africa, said that you cannot have communities where “people don’t look like each other,” and warned that when America is no longer a “white country” it will not only be different but “worse.”
Fuentes railed against women in the workforce and women’s suffrage. He claimed that right-wing websites which refer to him as an antisemite are all run by Jews, and accused Jewish conservative pundit Ben Shapiro of having more allegiance to Israel than America.
Lastly he addressed the allegation that he denies the Holocaust. Instead of affirming the fact that six million Jews were murdered by the Nazi regime, Fuentes mockingly cited post-war rumors — such as the one about Jewish prisoners being turned into lampshades — to question other aspects of the genocide.
“You know, not for nothing but they do say some pretty wacky things about the Holocaust,” Fuentes said. “You know if you ever read any of the books they talk about electrical floors… And they talk about roller coasters. And they talk about machines that do vulgar things. And they talk about mattresses made out of human hair, and lampshades, and bars of soap.”
“And none of that is real,” he added. “And even they say none of that is real. They will tell you. They said ‘Oh, well we lied about that before. That part was atrocity propaganda, but the rest of it, you know, you have to believe or else you get murdered I guess.'”
As noted by the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, Nazis did, in fact, remove the hair, gold teeth, and fillings from the bodies of Jews killed in gas chambers. The gold was melted down while the hair was sold to businesses in order to “make many products, including ship rope and mattresses.”
While rumors swirled that Nazis used the fat and skin of murdered Jews to create lampshades and soap, there is no evidence to corroborate those stories.
But whereas those claims might have been widely believed by people at one time, the claim of “machines that do vulgar things” originated with a book called Stolen Soul, written by a man who falsely claimed to have survived Auschwitz. It was certainly never taught as historical fact.
Fuentes was using a bad faith argument, but using debunked claims — such as those in Stolen Soul — to attack the veracity of other Holocaust atrocities is common among deniers.
As Aaron Breitbart, a researcher with the Simon Wiesenthal Center, said in the context of the soap myth, “The view of the Holocaust revisionists is, if you can prove something is wrong, then everything is wrong. It gives them an opportunity to cast doubt on the general historical veracity of the Holocaust.”
Fuentes also smugly dismissed the importance of the Holocaust — and of denying that it happened. “Let’s be very honest about the Holocaust: I don’t really care that much about it,” he told the crowd.
After describing it as “something that happened on another continent a hundred years ago in another country,” he claimed that there were worse things than denying the Holocaust. “And, you know, I’ll tell you something else in particular,” Fuentes said. “They call me a Holocaust denier. I think that denying the divinity of Jesus Christ is far worse.”
“And it’s true. Denying Christ is far worse than Holocaust denial and Ben Shapiro and frankly all the Jews can take that to the bank, okay?”