John Cleese of Monty Python is now claiming he has been ‘blacklisted’ by the Cambridge Union following the ban on a historian from impersonating Adolf Hitler at a debating society event.

The comedian aged 82 impersonated Hitler in Monty Python sketches and Fawlty towers. He said that he was ‘blacklisting himself’ before anyone else.

After Keir Bradwell (student president, 200-year-old Cambridge Union) emailed its members Monday, to inform them that he was creating a ban on speakers, his comments are now.

This list is referred to as “Stalinist” by critics and includes Andrew Graham Dixon – an art historian who offend students with his Nazi impersonation. 

Cleese took to Twitter to say that he was not scheduled to talk to students Friday but was told by someone at Cambridge Union that someone had been banned for impersonating Hitler.

“I’m sorry I did it on Monty Python, and I have blacklisted myself so that someone else doesn’t.”

The comedian who had studied at Cambridge said in a follow up tweet: “I apologize to anybody at Cambridge who wanted to talk to me. But perhaps some of us can find a place where the woke rules don’t apply.”

Cleese representatives and Cambridge Union representatives are still to confirm whether the event was cancelled.

The comedian, 82, who himself famously impersonated the Nazi dictator in a Monty Python sketch, said he was blacklisting himself 'before someone else does'

The comedian aged 82 said that he blacklisted himself to avoid being impersonated by the Nazi dictator in Monty Python’s sketch.

Alongside his Monty Python sketch, Cleese also famously impersonated Hitler by goose-stepping in an episode of Fawlty Towers

Cleese famously impersonated Hitler in a Fawlty towers episode, along with his Monty Python sketch.

Taking to Twitter, Cleese, who was due to speak to students on Friday, wrote: 'I was looking forward to talking to students at the Cambridge Union this Friday, but I hear that someone there has been blacklisted for doing an impersonation of Hitler'

Cleese posted to Twitter: “I was looking forwards to speaking to students at Cambridge Union on Friday. But I heard that someone has been blacklisted because they did an imitation of Hitler.”

Two very well-known clips, in which John Cleese impersonated Adolf Hilter  

Monty Python’s Flying Circus

Cleese is the fictitious Hilter (a National Bocialist candidate in a By-election held in Minehead). 

He is accompanied by Ron Vibbentrop, who is assumed to be Nazi Germany’s foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop.

They set out to persuade locals about their policy, which included their primary goal – annexe Poland.

In a speech from a balcony covered in Nazi flags, he also advocated the change of town’s name, to ‘Meinhead.

The constituents appear to be unaware of Adolf Hitler’s true identity despite several obvious clues. Heinrich accidentally said ‘Hitler’ and then ‘Hilter’, after Cleese gave him a hint. 

If Mr Hilter wins the byelection, it isn’t known.

Fawlty Towers: The Germans 

Cleese continues to offend German guests in this episode as he plays Basil Fawlty. This despite telling staff repeatedly “Don’t talk about the war”.

Fawlty is concussed and, at one moment, he goose-steps before his guests, while symbolising a Hitler-esque mustache with his finger.

Cleese said that war references are a long-standing topic of discussion, despite Cleese insisting that it was the Germans making the joke, and the British being obsessed with victory over Nazis.

Due to its use of racist slurs including the “n-word”, the show was taken off BBC-owned UKTV in the last year.

Fawlty and Major Gowen have a conversation during the episode. Fawlty tells a story about a match between cricket players in which he used terms like the n-word. 

However Cleese branded the channel ‘stupid’ for not realising the show was mocking the Major’s use of the n-word and added: ‘We were not supporting his views, we were making fun of them.’ 

Talk at Cambridge Union was about John Cleese, Cancel Me, his forthcoming Channel 4 documentary.

This documentary will feature comedians speaking to those who have claimed to be ‘cancelled’ for making certain statements or actions.

Interviews will be conducted with people who are opposed to politicians and their views in this show on political correctness.

Cleese was previously against “woke culture” after his own work was ‘cancelled”.

After a BBC streaming service removed an episode from Fawlty Towers, he took aim at them earlier in the year. He claimed that they were using ‘outdated’ language. 

The argument was over the Fawlty towers episode “The Germans”, which was first broadcast in 1975. 

Cleese plays Basil Fawlty in the episode. He repeatedly offends German guests by mentioning the Second World War, despite telling staff to ‘Don’t mention it’.

Fawlty is seen making a Hitler mustache with his finger while he’s still suffering from concussion effects.

Although the war references are a long-standing topic of discussion – despite Cleese insisting the joke was about older Britons who were obsessed with the Allied victory against the Nazis – the removal of the episode was due the use of racial slurs including the n word.

Fawlty and Major Gowen have a conversation during the episode. Fawlty tells a story about a match between cricket players in which he used racist terms like the n-word. 

However Cleese branded the channel ‘stupid’ for not realising the show was mocking the Major’s use of the n-word and added: ‘We were not supporting his views, we were making fun of them.’

However, the Hitler impression that he tweeted refers to his sketch of Hitler in Monty Python’s Flying Circus.

Cleese portrays the fictional Mr Hilter in the 1969 sketch. He is a candidate for the National Bocialist in Minehead’s by-election. 

Along with ‘Ron Vibbentrop’ – thought to be Nazi Germany’s foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop-, and ‘Heinrich Bimmler’ – presumed to Heinrich Himmler-, he plans to take the seat.

They tried to persuade locals about their plans, which included the annexe of Poland.

He also advocated changing the name of the town to “Meinhead” during a speech he gave from a balcony decked out in the Nazi flag.

There are several obvious clues to the fact that the candidate is Adolf Hitler. Heinrich said ‘Hitler’ accidentally before changing it back to ‘Hilter’. However, constituents don’t seem to know the true identity of the candidate. 

If Mr Hilter wins, it is not revealed in the sketch. It was written by Cleese with fellow Python Michael Palin.

After reports by Cambridge Union, the row stems from a list of banned speakers labelled ‘Stalinist’.

The Telegraph reports that President Keir Brawell sent an email to his members informing them of future events and who they would block, though the list is not public.

The group includes Andrew Graham-Dixon (art historian), who is accused of impersonating Adolf Hitler in a speech last Wednesday.  

Graham-Dixon was accused of imitating Adolf Hitler during an open debate about free speech. He also used racial slurs to show how offensive the dictator was. 

Soviet spy biographer Andrew Lownie – who was a previous president of the Cambridge Union – branded the blacklist ‘Stalinist’.

President Keir Bradwell (pictured) fired an email out to members to tell them who would be blocked from events

President Keir Brawell (pictured), sent out an email to all members informing them about those being blocked from attending events

It is said to include an art historian who was blasted by students for doing a Nazi impression last week (pictured)

According to some, it includes an art historian who was criticised by students for making a Nazi impression last Wednesday (pictured).

Pictured: Joseph Stalin

Soviet spy biographer Andrew Lownie (pictured) - who was a previous president of the Cambridge Union - branded the blacklist 'Stalinist'

Andrew Lownie, a Soviet spy-biographer and a former president of the Cambridge Union was labeled the blacklist “Stalinist” (left), the Russian

Who COULD be on the  ‘blacklist’? Cambridge Union’s most controversial speakers  

While the Cambridge Union does not make its blacklist public, prominent speakers may be listed on it.   

  • In May 2011 then Government Minister Eric Pickles faced furious student protests where they banged drums and blocked the entrance to the chamber where he was due to speak;
  • In November 2011 Universities Minister David Willetts was stopped from speaking by angry students at the university when he got on the podium;
  • The leader of France’s Front National Party Marine Le Pen faced 200 protestors in February 2013. They claimed that she promoted fascist views.
  • In January 2015 Australian writer Germaine Greer faced protests over her views on transgender people, which she said ‘seem to us ghastly parodies’. Many people called for Greer to not be allowed to return to the podium.
  • Julian Assange, a British citizen who was living in London’s Ecuadorian Embassy, was invited to the Union by video link in October 2015. However campaigners were in a commotion.
  • In March 2019 Cambridge University withdrew its offer of a visiting fellowship to Professor and author Jordan Peterson amid a furious backlash from some students who questioned his views on gender.
  • In July 2019 former Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage was no platformed by then union president Abdullah Shah, who claimed the politician ‘says controversial things for the sake of it’.

Mr Bradwell’s email said he would ‘create a blacklist of speakers never to be invited back, and we will share it with other unions too’, adding: ‘Andrew will be on that list.’

His message, seen by the Telegraph, said he would ‘institutionalise firm definitions of racism — including anti-black racism and the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism’ and vow to ‘intervene in debates whenever, if ever, these are contravened’.

He added: ‘More widely, I will intervene if and when I feel it part of my duty to our members and audience to do so.’

Blacklists are only for students who claim that they were harmed by speakers after performing at the union.

Lownie has previously written about Soviet spy Guy Burgess and he called the action’stalinist.

He said: ‘I think this is appalling. It has always been a problem to hear from controversial speakers, and the president invites them to speak as part of their program.

“But they can debate openly and present their cases, while undergraduates have the ability to question it. It’s sad.

“This seems rather Stalinist and goes against everything that is good about the union, including why it was created and flourished up until very recently.”

Bradwell stated that he was president because he has to strike a balance between free speech and the welfare of members.

He stated that he was keen to help students and future presidents make the right decision.

It comes after he was forced to apologise for Mr Graham-Dixon’s ‘crass and deeply insensitive’ impression of Hitler during a debate on ‘good taste’.

The guest speaker, 60, impersonated the German dictator as part of his argument against the motion ‘this house believes there is no such thing as good taste’.

His long impression of the Nazi leader, which contained racial slurs, racist and anti-Semitic views, was meant to show how offensive he was, according to historian.

Bradwell said that it was the “longest Hitler impression” the chamber ever heard.

Bradwell had been filmed admitting he was 'quite drunk' during the debate, but later said he had two glasses of wine and denied it impacted his ability to chair the discussion

Bradwell, who was later filmed confessing to being ‘quite drunk’ at the debate, said that he had had two glasses of red wine but denied this had affected his ability chair the discussion.

Bradwell initially admitted that he was “quite drunk” during the debate. But, later, Bradwell said that he had consumed two glasses of wine. This did not impact his ability as a chairperson.

His inability to intervene is solely due to his lack of courage.

Graham-Dixon stated during the debate that: “The romantic tradition in German art has been rejected by modern art.

‘This modern, horrible art that was promoted by the Jews… and the modern art, it was cubist – inspired by the art of the ne***s.

“This tribal art is a horrible thing. We must expunge this from our Deutschland.

We are Aryan pure people. Our genes are pure; our hearts and taste must be pure.

Graham-Dixon was against the motion, despite the offense. The debate ended on Thursday night. 

Bradwell opened a letter in which he wrote, “I want to apologize for any comments that were made during our Thursday evening debate.”

The society and I do not condone the thoughtless or grotesque language of the subject in question.

“The speaker made a very insensitive and crass impression of Hitler to prove that it is not possible to have bad taste.” […]It was unjustifiable and I regretted not intervening.

Bradwell had claimed he was “quite drunk” during the debate but later stated in an open letter that it didn’t affect his ability to lead the talk.

He stated that he had drunk two glasses of wine before dinner, just like our speakers. I brought this up to help add spice to what was still an enjoyable debate at the time. 

“I didn’t feel impeded in my ability as a chairperson of the debate. My failure to do so was due to my inability to get up and stop someone before 400.

Union Equalities officer Zara Salaria said art historian Mr Graham-Dixon's impression was 'absolutely unacceptable' and 'utterly horrifying'

Zara Salaria from Union Equalities stated Mr Graham Dixon’s impression of art historian was “absolutely unacceptable” and “utterly terrifying”.

Zara Salaria, Union Equalities Officer said that Mr Graham-Dixon was “absolutely unacceptable” and “utterly terrifying”.

Joel Rosen, the former president of the Cambridge Union tweeted that he felt physically sick from the events he attended.

Graham-Dixon released another statement, saying: “The aim of my speech is to emphasize the absolutely evil nature Hitler’s and his regime.

“He made horrible caricatures of Jews and Black people, and even homosexuals. As propaganda for his poisonous beliefs, he curated the huge Degenerate Art art exhibit.

“In my speech, he was caricatured briefly. I paraphrased HIS insensitive and crass comments about art, and race. It was my hope that this would have been clear for everyone.

“My point was to show that bad ideas within the art sphere can have terrible consequences for the rest of our lives.

“Those who are familiar with my work know that I’ve always been against discrimination and racism.

‘I am sorry to anybody who found my debating techniques and use of Hitler’s own language distressing. However, upon reflection, some words that I used were offensive even in quotations.

“It wasn’t my intention to cause any upset, but to convince them that bad taste is often accompanied by bad morality.

MailOnline reached out for comments to John Cleese representatives, Channel 4’s John Cleese as well as Cambridge Union.