A Greek comedian who poses in outrageous costumes to make provocative political statements has gone too far with his use of a Swastika intertwined with the Star of David, Greece’s Jewish community leaders have complained.
“The design depicted on the poster fiercely insults our very religion as well as the memory of the six million Jews, victims of the Holocaust,” said a statement from the Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece, addressed to the country’s Minister of Justice and officials in the education ministry. There was no immediate response.
The poster advertising the show by singer and comedian Tsimis Panousis, for a series of shows at a club in the port city of Piraeus near Athens, shows the Swastika with the Jewish symbol and is plastered across Athens and on major boulevards.
Panousis, who has a reputation for being outrageous behavior, was apparently trying to imply that Greece’s financial crisis was a result of the combined efforts of a German-led austerity plan and Jewish-controlled financial interests, the news agency JTA reported.
The Jewish central board’s statement said the board had appealed to various municipalities to remove the offending posters and that they had received positive responses. However, the posters remained up in many places in the city. There has been an upsurge in anti-Semitic incidents in Greece recently, but most have been tied to the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn Party.
Greece has close ties with Israel but the country nonetheless has seen vandalism at Jewish cemeteries and spates of anti-Semitic activities during a crushing economic crisis in which foreign interests have been blamed for many of Greece’s ills.