German Right-Wing Leader Quits Over Hitler Pic

It was only 'satire,' Bachmann spokeswoman says
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 22, 2015 12:30 AM CST
Lutz Bachmann delivers a speech during a rally in Dresden, Germany, last month.   (AP Photo/Jens Meyer)
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(Newser) – As the charismatic leader of a right-wing, anti-foreigner movement in Germany, Lutz Bachmann should probably have tried a little harder to distance himself from a certain figure in his country's past. Instead, the chief of PEGIDA—Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamization of the West—actually posed as Adolf Hitler, sporting a Fuhrer-style mustache and slicked-back hair for a selfie, reports CNN. He stepped down as leader of the movement after the tabloid Bild printed the photo from his personal Facebook page. He had also posted comments calling refugees "scumbags" and "animals," along with a picture of a Ku Klux Klan member with the caption "Three Ks a day keeps the minorities away."

Bachmann's Facebook page has now been deleted, but screen grabs suggest the Hitler photo was taken in September. Bachmann apologized for the "ill-considered" remarks when he announced his resignation, although he didn't mention the Hitler selfie, which a spokeswoman defended as "satire." The German government, which has urged people to shun PEGIDA rallies, condemned the photo, the BBC reports. "Anyone in politics who poses as Hitler is either a total idiot or a Nazi," Vice-Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel says. "Reasonable people do not follow idiots, and decent people don't follow Nazis."

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