Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Chile: "Nazi" school causes outrage

This is one of those stories where you wonder whether you should give it the publicity, but for interest's sake, here goes.

A self-proclaimed advocate of Nazism from Chiloé, Godofredo Rodríguez, plans to open a school called the "Escuela de Arte Nazi Presidente General Augusto Pinochet" in Ancud. The school uses a swastika as its logo and has, not surprisingly, provoked a certain amount of indignation in the area. Various politicians have protested and today it was reported that Rodríguez has been arrested on an open charge of theft.

Rodríguez does appear to be crazy; the conflation of "Nazism" and Pinochet, and the claiming that "others do the same with Salvador Allende, and he was a Jew and a freemason" are pretty hard to take seriously. But of course, this is not to say that the people of Ancud want to see posters with swastikas around the place and it does raise questions about people's right to propagate their own view of history. In Germany, use of Nazi imagery would not be allowed and if Rodríguez tried denying the Holocaust, that would not be allowed either. There is nothing to stop anyone in Chile denying the disappearances and tortures that happened under Pinochet.

Amplio rechazo a “Escuela de arte Nazi Augusto Pinochet” en Chiloé (Diario U Chile)
Ex diputado Ascencio pide a intendente de Los Lagos prohibir "escuela Nazi" en Ancud (La Tercera)
A Nazi School in Chiloé (ilovechile.cl)
PDI detiene a creador de escuela nazi de Chiloé (El Mostrador)

No comments: