New Daily Show host Trevor Noah under fire for past Twitter comments

NEW YORK (REUTERS) - Trevor Noah, the South African comedian chosen to replace Jon Stewart as the new host of the late-night comedy parody, The Daily Show was feeling the heat on Twitter on Tuesday for past comments he made about Jews and women.

The 31-year-old son of a black South African mother and a Swiss father who uses his mixed race in his comedy routine caused offence with tweets that people found anti-Semitic, sexist and crude.

"Almost bumped a Jewish kid crossing the road. He didn't look b4 crossing but I still would hav felt so bad in my german car!" Noah tweeted in 2009.

In another tweet, he compared England's Manchester United football team to a white girl: "Heavy upfront but lacking in the back."

Noah also poked fun at his countrymen and Israel. "South Africans know how to recycle like Israel knows how to be peaceful," he joked on Twitter, where he has more than two million followers.

The tweets prompted comments questioning how wise a choice Noah is to succeed Stewart on The Daily Show, which averages more than a million viewers each night.

"Far left #Daily Show hires a racist misogynist to replace Stewart," tweeted @johncardillo.

American comedian Roseanne Barr urged Noah in a tweet to cease "sexist & anti semitic 'humour' about jewish women & Israel."

But another follower, Raoul Duke@Th3-Dreamer-, came to Noah's defence.

"#TrevorNoah is a comedian. Comedians make offensive jokes. What do you expect them to make knock knock jokes. Get over yourselves #DailyShow."

There was no immediate response from Comedy Central, the Viacom-owned television network that airs The Daily Show, about the backlash or whether it was aware of the Twitter comments before naming Noah to replace Stewart.