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Atlantic: Ohio GOP Candidate for Congress Dresses as Nazi
cbs ^ | October 8, 2010 | Ann Binlot

Posted on 10/09/2010 7:26:13 AM PDT by tlb

Rich Iott, the Tea Party-supported GOP nominee for Congress in Ohio's 9th District, is part of a group that likes to don German Waffen SS uniforms and participate Nazi re-enactments, Atlantic journalist Josh Green revealed on Real Time with Bill Maher.

The group, called Wiking, acts out exploits from the 5th SS Panzer Division Wiking, an actual Nazi division, which fought on the Eastern Front during World War II .

Iott, who confirms his involvement with the group, denies any belief in the principles of Nazism.

"It's purely historical interest in World War II," he told the Atlantic.

Iott can't remember when he joined the group, although his name appears on a group roster from 2003. He says he participated in the group with his son "as a father-son bonding thing."

While Iott neglects to address Jewish voters he might have offended, he does address veterans in an e-mail to the Atlantic: "Never, in any of my reenacting of military history, have I meant any disrespect to anyone who served in our military or anyone who has been affected by the tragedy of war. In fact, I have immense respect for veterans who served our country valiantly, and my respect of the military and our veterans is one of the reasons I have actively studied military history throughout my life."

Incidentally, there is no longer any mention of Iott -- also a member of the NRCC's Young Guns Program -- on the Wiking website and all photographs of the Congressional candidate have been removed.

TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; Politics/Elections; US: Ohio
KEYWORDS: iott; nazi; ohio; reenactor; younggun
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To: Kate in Palo Alto; All

A law professor who voted for Obama says this attack is a bunch of ‘shoddy political hackery’ that buries key exculpating evidence:

101 posted on 10/09/2010 9:35:32 AM PDT by Qbert
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To: AnalogReigns

Please read first:

102 posted on 10/09/2010 9:38:10 AM PDT by Qbert
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To: cripplecreek; wideawake

Like I said, PERCEPTION IS EVERYTHING IN POLITICS. Iott may or may not have Nazi sympathies, but in this case, WHO CARES? There are photos of him dressed like this and the PERCEPTION of the vast majority of potential Republican voters, would likely be, that yes, if you like playing around in Waffen SS uniforms, than yes, you may well have Nazi leanings. That spells political disaster.

This also shows, that at the very least, Iott lacks basic common sense when it comes to politics. He may be a great guy...but if he lacks judgement, we shouldn’t support him.

As shown above, Dr. JOSEF MENGLE—one of the most sinister individuals of all history—was a member of the Wiking Waffen SS...for crying out loud!

It’s worth reposting widawake’s post that gets down to the problem:

There seems to be quite a bit of foolish thinking on this thread. That this is no big deal, that it’s just an interest in history, that it’s easily explained.

Let’s talk facts:

(1) If a voter sees a candidate dressed up in a Nazi uniform, he will not wait for an explanation or an excuse. He will move on in 90% of cases. That’s reality.[EXACTLY]

(2) Most people think that reenactors are weird. This is because so many of them are. I am not a reenactor, but I am a Friend of the National Military Park at Gettysburg and I know hundreds of reenactors. They’re a lovable but eccentric bunch.

(3) This reenactment group is far more sinister than the usual harmless reenactment group. Iott’s group specializes in reenacting warfare on the Russian front by dressing as members of the SS. Most American WWII reenactors reenact engagements in which American troops were involved, like the Bulge. The bad guys normally dress in German Army uniforms, not SS uniforms with elaborate Nazi insignia. Iott’s group calls itself “Wiking” the name of an SS unit and they reenact engagements in which no US troops were involved. Reenactors do not name their groups after the people they perceive as bad guys, but the people that they perceive as good guys. The more that is learned about this group, the more disturbing the details will be.

103 posted on 10/09/2010 9:39:52 AM PDT by AnalogReigns
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To: Dr. Sivana
CBS OS A SERIOUS what source ?
Dan rather and Fake but accurate documents ?
The Atlantic , that allows crazy Andrew Sullivan to post crazy Trig conspiracy stories .
Bill Maher, Need I say MORE?

This October surprise by three FARRRRRR Left wing sources smells to high heaven !

Why do posters hear actually believe and promote
Obama front groups as reliable sources ????

104 posted on 10/09/2010 9:42:22 AM PDT by ncalburt (Even)
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To: MarkL

Sorry. Heydrich was the commander [inially] of the SS SD. He went on to command the SICHERPOLIZEI, and eventually RSHA. He was Reichsprotektor of Bohemia-Moravia [Czechoslavakia]when he was assasinated. The WAFFEN SS was not in his bailiwick.

As an aside, Heydrich’s combat experience in WW II consisted of flying fighter planes in Norway and the Soviet Union [where he was shot down. He was a reserve MAJOR in the Luftwaffe, and an SS OBERGRUPPENFUEHER.

105 posted on 10/09/2010 9:42:27 AM PDT by PzLdr ("The Emperor is not as forgiving as I am" - Darth Vader)
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Comment #106 Removed by Moderator

To: Eldon Tyrell

d@mn, coffee all over the place, and I just cleaned my monitor...

107 posted on 10/09/2010 9:48:12 AM PDT by Ladysmith ("A community organizer can't bitch when communities organize." Rush Limbaugh)
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To: RedStateRocker
Even our military uses a similar helmet design.

It's not so much the shape that's "interesting," as much as the SS shield that you see on a lot of them...


108 posted on 10/09/2010 9:48:41 AM PDT by MarkL (Do I really look like a guy with a plan?)
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To: AnalogReigns

First off, the so called news sources are three far left wing front groups .

CBS- The Dan Rather Fake but accurate Obama front group.
Atlantic - The Andrew Sullivan rag that allows TRIG conspiracy stories to published and is run now by Linda Douglas , the Obama Obama care propagandist
Bill Maher - Need I say more ?

I would wait for his response before convicting him!

109 posted on 10/09/2010 9:49:21 AM PDT by ncalburt (Even)
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To: Dead Corpse
It's entirely possible that's Iott's involvement with this organization was purely innocent, despite the revisionist history that was on the group's website.

However, elections are about winning votes - not about having to come up with involved explanations as to why you're wearing the same unit insignia that Josef Mengele wore. An independent voter sees a picture of a candidate in that insignia, his immediate reaction is "Next!" not "I wonder if he has an innocent explanation for this?"

110 posted on 10/09/2010 9:57:07 AM PDT by wideawake
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To: tlb

I tried to look up one of the ‘reenactment’ sites and got a virus.

I know somebody has to play the Robber in “Cops & Robbers” (or Redcoats, or Confederates, or Klingons, or whatever), but I agree that this seems to be a failure of judgment.

111 posted on 10/09/2010 10:13:07 AM PDT by mrreaganaut (Love is all we need. God is love.)
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To: ncalburt

His response is in the article. He wore the uniform and was a member of the group by his own statement. The facts here aren’t in dispute. The interpretation of the facts is.

112 posted on 10/09/2010 10:14:16 AM PDT by wideawake
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To: mrreaganaut

The disturbing aspect is that this group named itself after the bad guys. These were not guys who mostly dressed as GIs and then the guys who lost the coin toss put on the German uniforms for today’s reenactment. This group existed to reenact the actions of a specific SS unit.

113 posted on 10/09/2010 10:23:12 AM PDT by wideawake
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To: Dead Corpse
The idjit deserves everything that's coming to him. IMO he is willfully blind to the historical record of the Viking Division. I knew what the Viking Division was about when I was 14 years old back in 1963, before there was an internet or the Historical Channel.

"The guy is into historical re-enactment, and because a liberal rag was able to put a negative spin on it... Quite a few want to toss him overboard."

114 posted on 10/09/2010 10:56:19 AM PDT by Thud
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To: AnalogReigns
To parse whether he was just re-enacting the German army, (which did have some noble folks in it, like Rommel, or Beck) instead of the Nazi Party perverts, is immaterial in the political realm.

While I will agree that the photo taken out of context can be used against a candidate politically. I will not concede that there is any substantial difference between performing as a WWII soldier on either side or as a War of 1860 soldier on either side. Especially when the bad guys get routed. In any event, it is not a disqualfying offense, especially when they run against those who are for the merciless slaughter of innocent babies in the womb.

It is a play. If Fred Thoimpson has a part in Das Boot, or played a Soviet in Hunt for Red October, it should not be held against him.

I live near a city (Rockford, IL) that does re-enactments of WW II, War of 1860, War for Independence, etc. The actors in these pieces often switch sides every year.

The only hint of any sympathy with the WWII Germans or Nazis is among some of the collectors of memorabilia and uniforms who necessarily provide same for the re-enactments. best I can gather, it is usually a macbre fascination, harmless in itself, rather than an actual endorsement. I doubt the pol in question is one of those.
115 posted on 10/09/2010 10:59:01 AM PDT by Dr. Sivana (There is no salvation in politics)
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To: Dr. Sivana

Let me provide a direct quote to why, when asked he reinacted thw Wiking SS, which the Dems can easily use to totally smear Iott:

“I’ve always been fascinated by the fact that here was a relatively small country that ... accomplished incredible things. I mean, they took over most of Europe and Russia, ...that’s incredible.”

PERCEPTION IS KEY. If you knew little about the candidates (as most voters do), would you vote for someone photographed smiling in a Nazi SS uniform while calling them “incredible?”

116 posted on 10/09/2010 11:45:20 AM PDT by AnalogReigns
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To: cripplecreek; Admin Moderator

Friend, I’m a loyal American Conservative. I’ve been a part of FreeRepublic since the ‘90s, and have personally worked on (very) Conservative Republican political campaigns.

I’ve tried to reason with you on a political level, without calling you names, and, without returning the suspicion and gall you’ve loaded on me.

You haven’t countered any of the points I’ve made which are:
1) This looks terrible...and perception is everything in elections, and
2) why would any common-sense Conservative ever want to play-act being a Nazi?

Why are you accusing someone you’ve never met of being a coward, just because I cannot support a candidate who likes dressing up as a Nazi?

117 posted on 10/09/2010 11:53:16 AM PDT by AnalogReigns
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To: MarkL
SS units were among the most brutal, and were behind nearly every massacre of civilians. I believe that their commander was Heydrich.

Actually, Heinrich Himmler, who reported to Hitler, was the SS Reichsführer. Heydrich was an SS General, however.

Here's a funny story about Heydrich wasting a mirror by mistake:

The only stumbling block [to Heydrich's rise in the Nazi Party] occurred as rumors surfaced about possible Jewish ancestry on his father's side of his family. Heydrich's grandmother had married for a second time (after the birth of Heydrich's father) to a man with a Jewish sounding name.

Both Hitler and Himmler quickly became aware of the rumors, which were spread by Heydrich's enemies within the Nazi Party. Himmler at one point considered expelling Heydrich from the SS. But Hitler, after a long private meeting with Heydrich, described him as "a highly gifted but also very dangerous man, whose gifts the movement had to retain...extremely useful; for he would eternally be grateful to us that we had kept him and not expelled him and would obey blindly."

Thus Heydrich remained in the elite Aryan order but was haunted by the persistent rumors and as a result developed tremendous hostility toward Jews. Heydrich also suffered great insecurity and some degree of self loathing, exampled by an incident in which he returned home to his apartment after a night of drinking, turned on a light and saw his own reflection in a wall mirror then took out his pistol and fired two shots at himself in the mirror, uttering "filthy Jew!"

Reinhard Heydrich

118 posted on 10/09/2010 12:19:23 PM PDT by cynwoody
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To: AnalogReigns
PERCEPTION IS KEY. If you knew little about the candidates (as most voters do), would you vote for someone photographed smiling in a Nazi SS uniform while calling them “incredible?”

I already agreed that the created perception from the photo would not be worth it in his case. He would have been better off being photographed being bayoneted by an Allied troop, or something. His choice of the word "incredible" is actually a good one, as it mainly means "unbelievable" (coming from the Latin credere, to believe). Unfortunately, it usually has a positive connotation. I agree that when you get to comments (not mere re-enactments) that words matter, and that the time of the event matters. What Hannibal did was incredible, and even though most of us view him as the bad guy, we wouldn't take umbrage at someone saying that he was incredible and did amazing things.

I would not let that lapse in judgement disqualify him from holding office. If he pays politically by having a close call, I'd like to think he'd rethink how he goes about the extra-curricular activities.
119 posted on 10/09/2010 1:15:16 PM PDT by Dr. Sivana (There is no salvation in politics)
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To: RedStateRocker

I was just being rhetorical...I just wanted to see what she would say...:)

Hey, if the guy is taking part in historical reenactments, I don’t see what the big deal is. However, if he is out mowing his lawn in the getup, that might be problematic.

120 posted on 10/09/2010 2:34:28 PM PDT by rlmorel ("Freedom has ceased to be a birthright; it has come to mean whatever we are still permitted to do.")
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