The New York Times publishes a crossword puzzle in the shape of a swastika on the first day of Hanukkah

Readers of The New York Times were horrified to see that Sunday’s crossword puzzle was shaped like a swastika, an especially glaring oversight because Sunday was also the first day of Hanukkah.

Meghan McCain was among many to call the Times. “On the first night of Chanukah, the anti-Israel New York Times publishes a crossword puzzle that looks like a swastika. I can’t make this up. we see you @New YorkTimes – we see you,” she tweeted.

The Times, meanwhile, defended the design and insisted the anti-Semitic scheme was unintentional. “This is a common crossword design: many open grids in crosswords have a similar spiral pattern due to the rules of rotational symmetry and black squares,” a gatekeeper said on Monday. Word from the Times to TheWrap.

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Apparently, this isn’t the first time this has happened. In 2017, the New York Times Games account replied with this statement after being charged with a similar offence: “Yes, hi. It is NOT a swastika. Honest before God. No one sits down to do a crossword puzzle and says, “Hey! You know what would look cool? ‘”

Reactions poured in immediately on Sunday.

“I want to thank The New York Times for validating my decision to cancel my subscription months ago. Bringing out a crossword puzzle that blatantly resembles a swastika on the first day of Hanukkah is either extremely irresponsible , or intentional”, tweeted @akaDottiedanger.

twitter user MissesDread commented in response to the Times comment on Monday, “Even if we were to believe this to be a ‘common puzzle design’, IT SHOULD NOT BE, @New YorkTimes.”

Brian E. makes games tweeted, “Just wanted to send a hearty F—YOU to Ryan McCarty and the @New YorkTimes rancid dog shit owned by nazis, making nazi and anti-semitic propaganda -!!! It’s the first day of Hanukkah and you’re doing this? ! EAT S-!”

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Sunday’s puzzle, which was created by Ryan McCarty and edited by longtime puzzle editor Will Shortz, was titled “Some Theme is Missing.” It was released in print and online, as several followers shared screenshots. (All NY Times online games, including Wordle, are available to subscribers only.)

Julian Blue pointed out that Shortz had to apologize for other offensive riddles in the past and called on the Times to “fire [the] racist crossword editor.

The Times has not commented on this tweet about Shortz.

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