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Royally Screwed

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NEWS.com.au -- Britain's Prince Harry has apologised after he was pictured at a fancy dress party wearing a Nazi soldier's uniform.

The 20-year-old, who is third in line to the throne, is pictured on the front page of Britain's The Sun newspaper in the beige uniform wearing a red armband emblazoned with a swastika.

In a statement, Harry said: "I am very sorry if I caused any offence or embarrassment to anyone. It was a poor choice of costume and I apologise."

The Prince wore the outfit at a 22nd birthday party of a friend. Reports say there were 250 people at the party, which had a colonial and native theme.

Harry is the grandson of Queen Elizabeth II and the second son of the Prince of Wales, Charles, and Diana.

Wow...


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Comments (34)

"oops"... (Below threshold)

"oops"

I know it's all PC to say t... (Below threshold)

I know it's all PC to say the swastika is a symbol of jew hating and what-not, but if the boy wants to dress up like a german soldier (who, like it or not, were the most feared and envied soldiers of WW2) then let him do it. Unless he starts babbling racial gibberish take it for what it is - A kid in a costume.


Just my 2 cents.

I don't see very many peopl... (Below threshold)

I don't see very many people taking offense to anyone dressed up as a Roman soldier (and the Romans certainly killed their share of Jews and Christians). This is just Politico-Möde. In fact, until very recently such period costumes when worn in the context of well, period costumes were not found in the least bit offensive. Back in more intelligent times, Swaztikas were considered offensive only when displayed in a serious or contemporary context.

Still, I'm sure all the fuss is nothing compared to what it had been if he had even hinted at making light of or threatening Islamofascists. France might even had declared war...

Granted, but the Romans hav... (Below threshold)

Granted, but the Romans haven't been killing Jews in living memory.

Along the lines of what Gra... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Along the lines of what Grandmaster and martin wrote (^^) -- it was a private party, not an official or otherwise public function, Harry wasn't making an appearance on behalf of anuthing other than himself as a near-kid at a costume party.

Whiie some focus on this with political overheat, however (no one here, these remarks are not focused on anyone in particular other than a general use for negative purposes of Harry's mistake in costumery), why not focus on people who dress up as, say, SATAN and other characterizations, on people who wear, say, a CLINTON mask (some people perceive him a Master Evil), why not focus on guys in leather and chains wearing tails (that's offensive to many of us)...

The list goes on. Harry just chose poorly but it was, after all, a COSTUME PARTY for him and his peers. Maybe they should criticise, instead, the alcohol he appeared to be drinking. I mean, it's more realistic if you are to criticize the chap than focusing on his costumery issues.

Who gives a rats ass...it w... (Below threshold)
packetninja:

Who gives a rats ass...it was a costume party not part of his daily wardrobe.....i think people will find anything to complain about....let the kid be....

he's wiked importaaant and gets alot of attention...

Considering the number of E... (Below threshold)
DaveP.:

Considering the number of ENGLISH soldiers -- AND CIVILIANS, or has Coventry and London burning slipped your minds-- killed by Nazi Germany, and considering the number of survivors of that horror still alive, this was in bad taste and damn stupid at best.

My uncle was a veteran of the Ardennes Forest fight and he would have slapped my teeth out if I had dared show up in such a costume.

The counterarguements above seem to center around the idea that, "Well, they massacred millions and millions of helpless women and children and started a war that killed millions more... but their soldiers were butch (insert horny sigh here) and it was a whole seventy years ago, so we'll forgive Andrew for wearing their uniform". What a load of bollocks.

I KNEW it! That kid's a Ba... (Below threshold)
Palmateer:

I KNEW it! That kid's a Battenberg!

DaveP.: it was a costume. ... (Below threshold)
-S-:

DaveP.: it was a costume. Worn to a costume party. By someone not yet old enough to realize implications of being photographed at a private party wearing a costume and being third in line to the throne of England.

Meaning, it was A COSTUME WORN TO A COSTUME PARTY. Note the glass of cordiality in the guy's hand.

So, I guess this means that... (Below threshold)
-S-:

So, I guess this means that the Pirate costume theme is also now out?

I mean, they were responsible for a lot of raping and pillaging, murder and theft and destruction. Still are in some parts of our world.

What about ghouls? The Napolean theme?

DaveP.: and, if I were as ... (Below threshold)
-S-:

DaveP.: and, if I were as an individual to apply your standard there, I'd demand every Japanese and Korean I encountered be immediately removed from existence.

Personally, I wouldn't want... (Below threshold)
tongancat:

Personally, I wouldn't want to have to be judged in the public eye for all of the stupid things I did when I was 20 years old. If anyone can show that Harry has demonstrated racist or antisemitic leanings before this incident, then I might take it more seriously. He apologized for the offense some people took...that should be the end of it. And to say he no longer deserves to attend Sandhurst because of it...well, that is just STUPID! Did it ever occur to the MP who said that that it would probably do him a lot of good to have a stint in the military?

--s--: Go ahead. Put your m... (Below threshold)
DaveP.:

--s--: Go ahead. Put your money where your mouth is- if you have the balls. Dig out a set of KKK robes or a nice pretty uniform like the Prince wore and wear them to YOUR office costume party. If anyone complains, you can use your "just a costume" line of reasoning on them. This ought to be especially fun if your boss is Jewish.

As far as your "Koreans and Japanese" strawman arguement: If the Japanese in question were wearing Imperial Army uniforms with the flashes of the Biological Warfare Unit- analogous to wearing the Hakenkreutz- than YES I would demand an apology. But I guess that history started yesterday for you...
... at least where pretty uniforms are concerned.

Erm, the Queen lived throug... (Below threshold)

Erm, the Queen lived through WW2 -- her father was King at the time. And royals supposedly get an excellent education.

I don't think ignorance can be Harry's excuse here.

Sure it was just a costume, and I've taken people to task myself for going overboard in condemning sales of Nazi paraphernalia. But this just strikes me as different. It's more than what some people here are saying.

As to consequences though, I'd say take the apology and drop the matter. As long as he doesn't make a habit of being abjectly stupid where people can see him, maybe he won't be a total loss.

And not being a total loss would put him one up on his father, IMHO.

I meant to add one aggravat... (Below threshold)

I meant to add one aggravating factor that makes this worse than some others seem to think: European anti-Semitism isn't a purely Continental matter. There are a lot of Brits who share the view of Israel as "a shitty little country" and Judaism as a gutter religion.

I'm sorry. This kid has bee... (Below threshold)
Eric:

I'm sorry. This kid has been in the public eye all his life - 20 years. He has had more photos of him published in newspapers than most of us have had taken. He should have known better.

He's going to live the life of a celebrity millionaire, and at this point, all he has to do to be ahead of the game is not be an embarrassment. He failed.

Would you be laughing this off if it was Jenna Bush? How about Chelsea Clinton? And they're not in any line of succession.

S seems quite defensive abo... (Below threshold)
Harlan Pepper:

S seems quite defensive about SS uniforms. Methinks she wears them regularly. Probably goes perfectly with her Hitler mustache.

Wanted to add a bit more he... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Wanted to add a bit more here, so as not to be misunderstood about this issue:

The choice of costume and by whom is problematic, yes, and indicates a disconnect by Harry, a lack of sensitivity given his family and position in such and why and all that...that is, there's an expectation there that Harry and anyone else in the Royal Family, much less general government, would be far more sensitive to making ANY appearance before ANYone else dressed like this, costume party or no.

But, again, I do say that it is indicative more as to Harry's individual lack of sensitivity and probable assumption that what he was doing was being "private" (a private party, afterall) while, for a person such as is Harry and those like him, nothing is ever actually private. But, still a costume party and I think that the uproar about Harry's insensitivity in this costume error and why is far beyond necessary.

His father and family needs to intervene here and determine just what the behavior is and then remedy that, but I doubt that Harry was even aware that him costumed as such was something of any proportions beyond the immediate party he attended while wearing it.

Question here is that he had to dress somewhere before attending the party and why didn't any adult in authority or influence -- attendance to -- this guy take some actions prior to Harry even leaving the door, getting in a transport?

I'd examine who supervises Harry and how and seems to me that Prince Charles should take some measures as a parent and privately with Harry and that the media jumping all over this issue should find something else to attack.

Harlan Pepper: No, I've ne... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Harlan Pepper: No, I've never seen nor have any plans to see any "SS uniforms."

I've never seen any "SS" related parephrenalia beyond the history books, and I did watch a film when I was a teen called "Remember Us" on PBS, and, I have a copy of "Schindler's List" on DVD.

That's about it.

I think you need to apologize for your Super Powers of Assumption Vision there.

England has a long history ... (Below threshold)
Lysander:

England has a long history with the Jews - throwing us out, "suffering" our presence and letting us back in, only to throw us back out again, many times in history. There is no possible excuse for the wearing of the swastika with that uniform - if he wanted to dress as a Wermacht soldier, fine, the armband was a Party affectation, not a military/uniform one. There's no need to add it to a costume and have it remain just a costume (the obvious exception for historical reference/movies/etc is there, but for a personal costume, for a party? None.)

The general feeling, as I have found it, of the English (generically) towards the Jews isn't the rabid anti-Semitism found in the symbolizm of that uniform he wore, but in a patronizing tone and condescention, as if to say "Well, what do you expect from such people?" Then again, I wasn't overly surprised by this "mistake".

If it maters to anyone, my ... (Below threshold)
-S-:

If it maters to anyone, my father was a highly decorated officer in Army Special Forces. He later became a Catholic Priest and I well respected the man and his character and his service to me and our country.

The very idea that I have some affiliation with "SS" related crap has just gotta stop because it isn't amusing, funny and even remotely by a million miles accurate.

Howard Dean is more related to Naziism than I am.

Unless it can be assumed that because I've driven a few Volkswagens and MercedesBenz in my life, that means something creepy, I dunno. Otherwise, I haven't the faintest idea why anyone would even attempt to associate me with something as vile as the German Socialist Party.

Anyone can look over my entire lifetime, privately and publicly, and find nothing even remotely affiliated or even sympathetic with that movement. I see that a few crazed and disgruntled "designers" on our planet just can't let go of their misperceptions about the Weblog Awards logo, seeing monsters in tiny boxes.

Please examine your own perceptions before you continue to make such baseless and vile accusations as that. What it reveals is that YOU perceive something problematic, doesn't mean that there is a problem before you, but that you have a problem in your own perceptions.

DaveP.: I have no balls, s... (Below threshold)
-S-:

DaveP.: I have no balls, sorry. Can't proceed with the "match ball size" issue here.

Lysander: they respond the... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Lysander: they respond the same way about Catholics, about Americans, etc.

I do sympathize and empathize here but my only point in any comments about Harry's error of costume choice was that he was attending a costume party, chose very badly what his costume was by whatever insensitivity was at work there, and is somewhat understandable given his age (he's still in learning mode as to social awareness is what I mean), but not excusable, just that the issue isn't that he wore such a costume to some public event, appeared on the street wearing it, something as official as that would be.

Just that the guy attended a costume party. I guarantee to you that a giant red Satan costume and things of that nature are as vile and offensive to me as that costume is to you and others who are Jewish, as is the symbolism.

Just that this is a kid drinking at a costume party. A private party among friends. He needs parental intervention and further education but it doesn't represent some political and/or governmental statement beyond that.

And, I'm still curious why pirates' costumes aren't also as offensive to many, given the level of horror and destruction waged by them -- instead we get the humorous movie about a heroic personality and such. While there was "Hogan's Heroes", granted, it was never funny or even viewable by me, for the same reasons.

The media and some people are just way over reacting about this. If Harry appeared on television, in church, on the street, at school, anywhere else dressed like that, then I'd reason this differently, but it looks to me that the guy wasn't supervised well and that his father hasn't done a good job (yet) with certain areas of social education for Harry. So, improve that, make a correction in his personality, do that but it serves no purpose to blow this issue into such huge proportions as the media is this morning.

Some have said that his apo... (Below threshold)
andre3000:

Some have said that his apology is not enough. I agree. A more apt act of contrition would be for he and his entire family to renounce the title HRH.

Anyone else agree?

And, Harlan Pepper, when yo... (Below threshold)
-S-:

And, Harlan Pepper, when you go by various fictional user I.D.'s, I suppose it's assumed you can write anything about anyone, as you have.

If you want to pursue such horrid accusations on the internet, sign your real name to the content or else consider the content a bad reflection on your " [email protected] " email address.

This, from the "spare"....[... (Below threshold)

This, from the "spare"....[shakes head negatively]....

Remember, half his family, ... (Below threshold)
chris:

Remember, half his family, on the mom side, are German. The Battenburgs did not change their name to Windsor until WWI. Also, remember his great uncle was Lord Mountbatten, or Battenburg.

I'll take the Windsors over our royal family, the Kennedys, anytime.

That all said, Harry's getting a little bit old to keep falling in the shit like he does.

I've begun to wonder if it'... (Below threshold)

I've begun to wonder if it's part of the "younger sibling" training -- to make it less likely anyone will try to overthrow the eldest when he/she takes the throne.

Queen Liz's sister was the butt of jokes about sexual promiscuity. Prince Chuck's two brothers were favorite tabloid fodder for decades. Now there's "Heil Harry."

Can it really all be a coincidence?

...okay, maybe I shouldn't have lined my hat with tinfoil this morning...

Look, I take it as a given ... (Below threshold)
shark:

Look, I take it as a given that Brits don't give a crap about offending Jews (after all, Mohammed is now a top 10 name in that country) but seeing the death and destruction rained down on England by Germany in WW2, I just can't see how he could do this as some sort of "innocent" mistake.

The kid's a sodding wanker and that's that.

British vets should be bloody well outraged at this idiot.

My Two Cents: We'v... (Below threshold)
julie:

My Two Cents:

We've all done stupid things but have had the luxury of no one interested in memorializing it for perpetuity.

Anyway, Harry's taking a little trip to Auschwitz. It'll be good for him. He should visit a few more death camps while he's at it. God knows, there are enough of them.

But now that Bush is Hitler, where is our Auschwitz?

oh my GOD! So now Bush is H... (Below threshold)

oh my GOD! So now Bush is Hitler? How many Jewish countries did he exterminate again? Hmm, let's see, I count none. When did he try to take over the world? You know, he did storm through Italy and murder everyone there, soldier and civillian alike...Oh wait, no he didnt..Hmm, no dice there either.

Well, maybe he decided that white people are better than any other race? No, that's not it.

You know, I can't think of ANY world domination things GW Bush has done. Yes, he went to war with only 30 some odd countries for a cause he believed in. Iraq is better because of it.
But to say he's the next Hitler? That's just uninformed hate speak.


SWOOSH!!!!<b... (Below threshold)
julie:

SWOOSH!!!!
Grandmaster B' s head.

I found it interesting how ... (Below threshold)

I found it interesting how different my take was than that of my 17 yr old son. I was horrified and thought "how could he be so stupid?" My son thought that mamking a big deal out of it was stupid. "It was just a costume, he's not a real nazi you know." I said "no, but it is offensive, these men killed millions of innocent people" My son said "Pirates killed people too, but you don't see anyone getting upset when someone wears a pirate costume."
After giving him another mini lesson on the Holocaust, it occurred to me that as generations get farther and farther away from things like the holocaust they will be less offended by this kind of thing. It will be history to them. I think Harry thought like my son did, that it was the past and the theme was "native and colonial" or some such, so why not? He probably thought it would be funny in a southpark kind of way. Where nothing is sacred.
Be that as it may, he is in the limelight. Royalty and all that, so using some brain cells might help. Is there no one near him that could say "uhh..not such a good idea."

Is there no one near him... (Below threshold)
julie:

Is there no one near him that could say "uhh..not such a good idea."

I often ask the same think about Michael Jackson.




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