Germerica.net – February 28, 2011
Making Hitler-style salutes even in jest is no joke in Germany. A tourist from Quebec learned this the hard way over the weekend in Berlin. Also, don’t teach your dog any such tricks.
Police arrested the 30-year-old man from Quebec who was being photographed by a German friend, outside the German parliament, the Reichstag.
Berlin newspapers said the pose resulted in the confiscation of the camera and the arrest of the Canadian man, who was later released on bail.
Police said the Canadian would be investigated for possible extremist motives over the gesture.The Hitler salute and other Nazi symbols have been outlawed since the war.
This is not an isolated instance, according to police who frequently receive reports of tourists displaying stiff-armed salutes.
In the most recent incident, a federal police women observed the man as he was being photographed and called in her colleagues. Use of the “German salute” violates the constitution. It can result in prison terms of up to three years or a fine.
The Canadian tourist, whose name was not disclosed, was taken to a nearby police where police also called in the state security office to investigate if the man and his friend were members of a rightwing extremist organization. They found no evidence, the newspaper Der Tagesspiegel said.
The offender is likely to be charged a fine, according to the paper. If he fails to pay, he could face problems the next time he tries to enter Germany, it said.
A day earlier, police arrested a 14-yesar old boy for also displaying the Hitler salute in the company of two friends. Following an investigation, police released the boy to his family.
The Germans also show no mercy when someone is caught teaching animals to raise their paws in an ominous way.
Late last year, a Berlin man was arrested after police determined he had taught his German shepard “Adolf” to demonstrate the Hitler salute.
Police arrested the man, identified only as Ronald T. and took him to the precinct handcuffed. He was sentenced to five months in prison and his dog was given to an animal shelter.