MOTÖRHEAD Guitarist Defends LEMMY Against ‘Nazi Sympathizer’ Accusations

ENGINE HEAD guitarist Phil Campbell shot down a suggestion that the band’s late main man Ian “Lemmy” Kilmister was a Nazi sympathizer.

Lemmy had an extensive collection of military and especially Nazi paraphernalia from World War II, and was known to wear iron crosses and hats from the German Air Force. However, he publicly condemned racism, claiming that he “just collected the stuff” and “didn’t collect the ideas”. He explained in an interview, “I have friends of all colors and religious beliefs. I don’t have a racist bone in my body.”

After a ENGINE HEAD fan from Venezuela praised Lemmy On Twitter on Friday (June 4), calling him “the greatest rocker in history” despite his “Nazi tendencies”, Campbell agreed, writing: “FYI, Lemmy NOT, had Nazi tendencies. He was a historian.”

A short while later, Lemmy‘s old band member in HEADCAT (formerly THE HEAD CATSlim Jim Phantom from THE WEAK CATSalso weighed in, tweeting: “Phil Campbell is 100% correct and I will vouch for this true statement all day long. Best, SJPCampbell then thanked Slim Jim Phantom for his messages of support, writing: “Thank you Jimwe should know.”

In a 2017 interview with BillboardENGINE HEAD drummer Mikey Dee was asked what? Lemmy would have said about the events that took place earlier that year in Charlottesville, Virginia, where a white supremacist protested the removal of a statue of the Confederate General Robert E. Lee fell into violence that culminated in activist’s death Heather Heyer and injuries to nearly two dozen others after a car rammed into a group of counter-protesters.

“Oh, he would have hated it. I can totally speak for him there: he hated that shit,” dee said. “A lot of people judged him for collecting war stuff. A lot of people didn’t look behind the curtain. He hated fucking Nazis. He hated stupidity and he was fascinated by the stupidity of humanity. He would probably write incredible lyrics about it – he thought it was so ridiculous.”

More than a decade ago, DISTURBED front man David Draiman, who is of Jewish descent and has spoken out against anti-Semitism for years, had strong words for rock musicians who collect Nazi memorabilia. When asked in an interview with Revolver magazine about artists like Lemmy and KILLER guitarist Jeff Hanneman who collected Nazi artifacts, Draiman said: “That’s a super-duper taboo and insulting to me. I don’t understand the fascination. It’s the most provocative imagery you can use, and that’s why people use it. And if that’s their goal, I think they’ll get it.” achieve it.”

When that was told Kilmister defended himself by saying that he was simply collecting artifacts from war history, Draiman replied: “I don’t give a fuck who you are. If you start using Nazi symbolism I’m going to have a problem with you because I don’t understand how anyone can think it’s okay to wear something on their body that represents destruction and genocide of my people. I do not agree with that and there is no excuse and there is no explanation.”

An investigation was reportedly launched in 2008 into whether Lemmy a crime committed under German law by wearing what appeared to be a Nazi cap in a published photo. The photo in question appeared in a German newspaper before July 5, 2008 of the band “Wacken Rocks by the Sea” concert in Aurich, Germany with MACHINE HEAD and SAXON

All “anti-constitutional propaganda” – and in particular any attempt to propagate Nazism – is illegal under Article 86 of the German Penal Code. Article 86a also prohibits all “anti-constitutional” symbols, including all Nazi insignia, flags, slogans, and gun salutes.

Speaking with the New York waste website, Lemmy stated about his Nazi collection: “I don’t just collect Nazi stuff, I collect objects from all the ‘ash countries’. Also from countries that are no longer even mentioned as former part of the ashes. Like Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Finland, Hungary. Okay, in the end they all said, ‘We’re not Nazis’ when they saw the Germans were losing it. But five years before that, they said, ‘Yes!'”

When asked where he gets the collected items from, Lemmy replied, “The US is a great place to collect that shit because the GIs took everything back to America. They took damn warehouses full of uniforms, Mercedes crew cars. A man sent a Focke Wulf 190 fighter to pieces to house and rebuilt it in America Now he owns the only fucking FW 190 in the world I used to buy a few things in Germany but now you can’t take knives or things home on a plane anymore And it’s become more relaxed to buy things like that [in Germany]† Especially in Hamburg there are five or six shops. They advertise it. What’s the point? It’s not something nationalistic, I mean, what the hell are you going to do? Pretend it never happened? There are aircraft models of Messerschmidt 109 fighters. Aren’t you supposed to touch them?”

As to whether people should wear uniforms, Lemmy stated, “I’ll tell you a little about history. From the beginning of time, the bad guys always had the best uniforms. Napoleon, the Confederates, the Nazis. They all had killer uniforms. I mean, the SS uniform is damn brilliant” They were the rock stars of the time. What are you going to do? They just look good. Don’t tell me, I’m a Nazi, because I have uniforms. In 1967 I had my first black girlfriend and many more since. I just don’t understand racism; I never thought it was an option.”

Lemmy, who celebrated his 70th birthday on December 24, 2015, learned two days later that he was suffering from an aggressive cancer. He died two days later, on December 28, 2015, at his Los Angeles home.

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