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Madonna Brands Le Pen With Swastika

National Front leader bravely responds by threatening to sue

Marc Tracy
June 05, 2012
Marine Le Pen in Madonna's stage show.(Hollywood Reporter)
Marine Le Pen in Madonna's stage show.(Hollywood Reporter)

Kicking off her world tour in Tel Aviv last week, Madonna featured a multimedia backdrop for one song that included a brief image of French Front National leader Marine Le Pen’s face with a swastika on her forehead (h/t Jewcy). The symbol is white, and actually faces the opposite direction of the traditional Nazi insignia (as well as its Hindu antecedent).

However, Le Pen is still le pissed: “If [Madonna] does that in France, we’ll be waiting for her,” she said, and threatened to sue. It’s a touchy subject for Le Pen, given that her party still has prominent Holocaust deniers, such as her own father, who led it until very recently.

It gets better: according to her site, Madonna plays Paris’ Stade De France on July 14—Bastille Day. Hopefully we’ll then get the opportunity to see how sincerely Le Pen believes in the Republic’s founding ideal of “Liberté.” Alternatively, Madonna could hold her fire until she reaches the Land of the Free (August 28, Philadelphia, w00t!), where I promise you such political speech is durably protected.

Marc Tracy is a staff writer at The New Republic, and was previously a staff writer at Tablet. He tweets @marcatracy.