The video that contained the image – as well as other political and religious figures including Pope Benedict XVI, Sarah Palin and Chinese President Hu Jintao – accompanied Madonna on the song “Nobody Knows Me.” When she performed the track Tuesday in Nice, France, the video depicted Le Pen’s face with a question mark over it instead.
“It’s proof that our arguments won out,” Gaël Nofri, the leader of a Nice-based conservative group that supports Le Pen’s National Front Party, told Agence France-Presse. “It’s excellent news.”
The National Front party has spoken out several times about the picture of Le Pen, which preceded an image of Hitler with a swastika superimposed in the same position on his face. At one point the party threatened to sue Madonna, with vice president Florian Philippot saying, “We cannot accept this insulting connection. Marine Le Pen is defending her honor, but also that of party members and supporters and the millions of Front National voters.”
Madonna defended her use of the image in an interview with a Brazilian television journalist, saying that it fit her message about “the intolerance that we human beings have for one another.” She added: “Music should be about ideas, right? Ideas inspire music.”