A number of celebrities, including former NFL quarterback Brett Favre, have allegedly been tricked into recording anti-Semitic video messages by an online white supremacy group.
According to a report by BuzzFeed News, the videos were made on Cameo, a platform where fans can book personalized video shout-outs from their favourite celebrities and athletes.
A recent video recorded by Favre apparently contains coded anti-Semitic language and was shared by a group known as the Goyim Defense League (goyim is a Jewish derogatory term for a non-Jewish person), who claimed responsibility for the messages.
“Brett Favre here with a shout-out to the Handsome Truth and the GDL boys,” the pro football Hall of Famer reportedly says in the video. “You guys are patriots in my eyes. So keep waking them up and don’t let the small get you down.”
“Keep fighting, too, and don’t ever forget the USS Liberty and the men and women who died on that day. God bless and take care.”
According to BuzzFeed, “Remember the USS Liberty,” which refers to a Navy ship inadvertently shot down by Israeli forces during the Six Day War, has recently become a rallying cry for anti-Israel and anti-Semitic individuals.
Favre posted a statement on his Facebook page addressing the situation, saying that he believed he was recording a message for a U.S. veterans organization.
“Since I match service dogs with military veterans who have PTSD, I assumed that the request stemmed from my interest in veterans affairs and recorded the message… I thought I was creating a message to support the brave men and women of our military forces,” he wrote.
“A few days later, I was distressed to learn that the request came from an anti-Semitic group that reposted my video with comments implying that I endorsed their mission. Nothing could be further from the truth.”
Favre revealed he would donate his $500 Cameo fee to charities “supporting their fight against hate and bigotry.
“Like most Americans, I am sickened by what these groups stand for and concerned about their role in fuelling today’s negative political climate.”
Comedian Andy Dick and rapper Soulja Boy were also duped into creating similar video messages, according to BuzzFeed.