Soccer Player Banned for Using Nazi Salute
Giorgos Katidis, 20, says he didn't know what it meant
By Neal Colgrass, Newser Staff
Posted Mar 17, 2013 4:15 PM CDT
Updated Mar 17, 2013 5:20 PM CDT
AEK Athens midfielder Giorgos Katidis raises his hand in a Nazi style salute as he celebrates scoring the winner in a game against Veria in Athens' Olympic Stadium, Saturday, March 16, 2013.   (AP Photo/INTIME)

(Newser) – The soccer federation of Greece has banned a player from the nation's teams for life after he celebrated a goal yesterday with a Nazi salute, the Guardian reports. The federation handed Giorgos Katidis, 20, the ban for what it deemed a "severe provocation": The salute "insults all the victims of Nazi bestiality and injures the deeply pacifist and human character of the game," it said. But Katidis insists he was only pointing to a friend in the stands and didn't know what the salute meant, the BBC reports.

"I am not a fascist and would not have done it if I had known what it meant," he said on Twitter. His team's German coach supported him, saying Katidis "most likely saw such a salute on the internet or somewhere else and did it without knowing what it means." At Yahoo! Sports, Ryan Bailey wonders if Katidis might be that "naive/stupid. ... After all, this is a man half-witted enough to apparently have Get Rich or Die Tryin' tattooed just above his junk." Either way, it's bad timing: Today is the 70th anniversary of the deportation of the first Greek Jews to Auschwitz-Birkenau during World War II.

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CommentsOnArticles
Mar 19, 2013 11:26 PM CDT
"But Katidis insists he was only pointing to a friend in the stands and didn't know what the salute meant, the BBC reports." So, by this guy's' 'pointing to a friend in the stands', I guess the neo-nazis now have now modernized the nazi salute to making a fist with the index finger extended forward. giorgos katidis, like everyone else infected with the self-righteousness of the nazi mentality, you are a liar and unrepentant. May you one day turn away from this evil path.
1492
Mar 19, 2013 9:47 PM CDT
This fellow is a Coward. Instead of owning up and apologizing, he is claiming ignorance....that arm doesn't look innocent at all. What an asshole. His character is personified by his tatoos. 1942
pwrmic
Mar 19, 2013 9:55 AM CDT
So what if he is a Nazi, he lives in Greece...is there a cause of concern?