Thursday, July 31, 2008

Germans dig up coffin of neo-Nazi after tip-off it was draped in swastika flag

Police dug up the freshly buried coffin of a neo-Nazi activist in Germany because it was draped with a swastika flag.

Publicly displaying any symbols of Hitler’s regime is strictly prohibited in Germany – apparently even in the afterlife.

Officials heard that seconds before the coffin bearing Friedhelm Busse was lowered into consecrated ground at Passau on Saturday, a neo-Nazi fan wreathed his coffin in a WW2 ‘battle flag’ which has a huge swastika in its centre.

Busse, the last leader of the Free German Labour Party which was outlawed in 1995, went to his grave wrapped up in the symbol he loved.

But not for long.

Passau senior prosecutor Helmut Walch said the grave was exhumed soon afterwards and the flag removed. The far-right skinhead who placed it there was arrested and charged with carrying a banned object.

Reporters said the flag was cast on the grave by Thomas Wulff, an activist in the far-right National Democratic Party NPD. If he were convicted of displaying an "unconstitutional symbol," he could face a fine or up to three years in jail.

Walch said an inquiry was continuing into the violence by 90 admirers of Busse against anti-Nazi groups who were observing them at the Passau cemetery and against police who intervened.

A Mongolian woman was later attacked in the Passau downtown area, apparently because of her appearance.

Germ any's national council of Jews was among groups which voiced outrage that the racists had been able to terrorize people.


Thursday, July 10, 2008

Swastika Shows Up as Number 1

We've see a lot of crazy search trends on Google and other online search engines, but nothing prepared us for the shocking number one search trend that we saw on Google's list of top search terms this morning: a Swastika, the Hindu-symbol-of-peace that was then hijacked by the Nazis and mostly now symbolizes....Nazis, neo or otherwise.

We first saw news of this on the Drudge Report, which has a screenshot of the symbol appearing as the number one search term. By the time we got to the page, however, it was already down to number 3 (as you can see from our above screen shot, taken this AM).

How one even creates a swastika with a computer is beyond us -- though we guess you could just cut and paste it into the search field -- but this is no doubt the work of hackers or some sort of neo-Nazi Google bomb. I DOUBT THAT...PEOPLE ARE FASCINATED WITH THE SYMBOL.

When you click on the term on the Google Hot Trends page, you get a bunch of links in Chinese, so could it just be something random and coincidental, or some kind of Chinese character we're misreading? We're not so sure: Pretty much all of the Chinese-language links you get when you actually click on the symbol refer to the word swastika. Maybe there was some big article about swastikas on the news in China today? We also looked up the swastika character in a Chinese character dictionary, and it means