Neo-Nazis Held a Secret Concert Called ‘The Empire Strikes Back’ in Mexico City

Many of the attendees made the Nazi salute popularized by Adolf Hitler, while others had tattoos of the German dictator, according to a press report.
A grab of the video taken by newspaper El Pais from the clandestine neo-Nazi concert in Mexico City. 

MEXICO CITY — Hundreds of neo-Nazis showed up to a secret concert in Mexico City last month, flashing swastika tattoos and yelling out hate messages, according to a press report.

Many of the concert’s attendees—most of them men with shaved heads—made the Nazi salute popularized by Adolf Hitler during the concert, El Pais reported, while others had tattoos of the German dictator. One musician declared, “Fucking f***ts who litter my city, hang them, and burn them.”


In total, some 300 people attended the October 29 event, billed as “The Empire Strikes Back.” All were vetted to ensure they weren’t antifascists and had to show identification and a QR code at the door. A reporter with El Pais managed to gain access to the concert, the location of which was kept secret until one day beforehand, and recorded video

Mexican bands SunCity Skins, Last Chance, and Royal Aces Convicted played at the concert, according to the publication. The Spanish band Batallón de Castigo, or Punishment Batalion, was the headliner. In 2020, its lead singer was sentenced to a year in prison for promoting white supremacist ideology.

The concert was held at Salón Pentatlón, an event space in Mexico City. A representative for Salón Pentatlón told VICE World News in a text message that the space vets people and groups who rent from them. Still, the representative said, “we have nothing to do with the movements or ideologies” of the people behind the October 29 concert.

There are no statistics about whether antisemitic incidents have increased in Mexico, but the concert attended by neo-Nazi enthusiasts comes on the heels of other troubling events. The concert comes at a time that antisemitism is on the rise in the U.S. and growing concerns of violence against Jews.

On Halloween, during a costume contest at a private university in Mexico City, a student dressed up in a Nazi uniform and made the fascist salute popularized by Hitler. Earlier this month, vandalizers painted “I hate Jews” outside a cafe in Mexico City’s upscale Condesa neighborhood. The hate message was still visible as of Sunday.

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Graffiti in the Condesa neighborhood of Mexico City that says "I hate Jews." Photo sent to VICE World News by a Mexico City resident.

A spokeswoman for Mexico’s National Council to Prevent Discrimination (CONAPRED) declined to comment on the concert attended by neo-Nazi enthusiasts and said the agency didn’t have statistics readily available about the rate of antisemetic incidents in the country. In a November 4 press release, the agency decried hate speech. 

“Conapred recognizes the existence of hate narratives supremacists, which incite various forms of violence,” the agency said, adding that it is important to “counteract them with alternative and inclusive narratives through speeches that promote human rights.”

The concert was publicized exclusively on social network groups associated with the far-right, El Pais reported, and tickets were sold online through Heidelberg Bookstore, an independent bookstore in the northern Mexico state of Monterrey that features neo-Nazi literature.

Mexico has also had its share of scandals. In April, a Mexican couple had a Nazi-themed wedding in the central Mexican state of Tlaxcala. In 2020, Volkswagen cut ties with a distributor in Mexico City after photos emerged of a wall inside the business decorated with the image of a VW Beetle alongside swastikas.

In the U.S., antisemetic comments and rhetoric have become increasingly mainstream. The superstar rapper Ye, formerly known as Kanye West, has accused Jews of a “Holocaust” against Black Americans and claimed the “Jewish media” is fueling a backlash against him. On November 3, the Brooklyn Nets basketball team permanently suspended star guard Kyrie Irving after he posted a link on Twitter to a film that asserted the Holocaust never happened and then refused to state that he has no antisemetic views. The same day, the FBI warned of security risks at New Jersey synagogues.