German police are still searching for a man who shouted “no bathing for Nazis” before running off with the clothes of a far-right leader who was swimming in Heiliger lake (pictured) near Potsdam on a hot evening last week, a local newspaper reports.
Other bathers called police who escorted Alexander Gauland leader of Alternative for Germany (AfD) in his swimming shorts, to the police station and, later, to his home.
Police have not ruled out political motive behind the theft which took place on May 29 but was reported only on Tuesday (June 5) by Märkische Allgemeine which Gauland used to edit.
But the image of the 77-year-old politician walking half-naked with police went viral on social media with hundreds using the hashtag #Badespass (bathing fun) to post their comments. Some called it his “karma” while others said it is “too funny to condemn,” or a “creative way to resist the far right in Germany”.
Gauland’s embarrassment and anger after the theft found no reflection in his weekend speech to members of the youth wing of the anti-refugee, anti-Islam party he co-founded in 2014.
But during his speech, he created fresh controversy by downplaying Hitler and Nazi era and dismissing it as a mere speck of “bird shit” on Germany’s otherwise 1,000 years of glorious history.
As a politician, Gauland has often courted controversy. Last year, he said Germans should be “proud” of what their soldiers achieved during the world wars. He joked about deporting a German politician with Turkish roots to Anatolia, insulted a soccer player who is black and sought ban on Muslim migrants.
Gauland told Märkische Allgemeine that he had to change all locks on his house because his keys were kept inside the stolen trousers.