Saturday, June 24, 2017

Nazi Rock

If you balk at the idea of Confederate memorials, you'd surely be displeased to learn that for over 20 years a small memorial dedicated to six executed Nazi spies sat on Federal land.  From WaPo:
“In memory of agents of the German Abwehr,” the engraving began, “executed August 8, 1942.”
Below that were six names, and below those was another cryptic line: “Donated by the N.S.W.P.P.”
The  N.S.W.P.P.?  That would be the National Socialist White People’s Party, which until the mid-60's had been known as the American Nazi Party.

The granite slab was illegal, and officials debated how best to deal with it.  Some argued that the memorial be destroyed and the chunks tossed into the river, but conservationists won.  After determining the site wasn't a grave, one day in 2010 a forklift came and, under the supervision of a museum curator, lifted it into a truck and transported it to the storage facility where it still sits as Item OXCO-475, somewhere in a Maryland suburb of D.C.  The Park Service asked the Washington Post to be no more specific than that out of fear the memorial could yet become some kind of shrine.  The same kind of fear that drove the Russians to scatter Hitler's remains, for the CIA to dismember Che Guevara and bury the parts in various locations, or the Americans to dump Osama Bin Laden into the sea.  Rangers had already noticed the slab had been cleaned and at times had found it adorned with candles and deer bones.  And, for all the CIA's efforts, Guevara does have a shrine in Bolivia where he is worshipped like a saint.

I wonder how many other secret shrines dot the American landscape?  Swastika-shaped buildings aside, of course. (here | here).

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