Hitler Speech Broadcast on Austria Train

2 suspects allegedly had key to intercom system
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 15, 2023 1:27 PM CDT
Hitler Speech Broadcast on Austria Train
Trains parked at a station in Vienna, Austria.   (AP Photo/Ronald Zak, File)

Two men in Austria were arrested after excerpts of speeches from history's least popular Austrian were played over a train's loudspeaker system. Passengers say they were shocked to hear around 30 seconds of an Adolf Hitler speech on the intercity train from Bregenz to Vienna, along with the sound of a crowd shouting the Nazi salutes "Heil Hitler" and "Seig Heil," the BBC reports. Austrian news agency APA reports that two men were arrested after authorities analyzed video from the train. The AP reports that it is a crime to spread Nazi propaganda in Austria.

The two suspects allegedly had a key issued to all train employees that allowed them to access the intercom system, though national railway company OBB said the men were not employees, the Guardian reports. "We clearly distance ourselves from the content," OBB. The men are suspected in similar recent incidents involving train intercom systems, though it's not clear whether those also involved recordings of Hitler. One of the passengers on Sunday's was Schlomo Hofmeister, the community rabbi of Austria. He tweeted that some passengers laughed when "Seig Heil" came of the intercom.

Another passenger, Green Party lawmaker David Stoegmueller, said passengers were "completely shocked" and crew members were unable to stop the broadcast, the BBC reports. "One crew member was really upset," he says. Stoegmueller says one passenger said that when trains in other countries have problems, it usually involves the air-conditioning breaking down, but "in Austria, the technical problem is Hitler." (More Austria stories.)

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