Rael supports Latvian hockey team’s display of swastika; Calls for swastika’s rehabilitation as peace symbol
LAS VEGAS, Dec. 1, 2013
LAS VEGAS, Dec. 1, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Rael, founder and spiritual leader of the International Raelian Movement (IRM), today issued his support for a Latvian hockey team, Dinamo Riga, which was fined $30,000 for displaying a swastika image on its icy playing field during a pre-game choreographed show.
“The symbol in question was actually an ancient Latvian symbol known as the Ugunskrusts, which means ‘fire cross,'” said Raelian Guide Thomas Kaenzig, according to a statement released today by the IRM.
“The event was a match between a Latvian local team and a Russian team, and for a pre-game celebration of the Republic of Latvia’s 95th Anniversary of Independence, soldiers carrying Latvian national flags formed the Ugunskrusts in the center of the playing field. That set off protests from fans and anti-Nazi groups who misinterpreted it.”
The image in question had nothing whatsoever to do with Hitler or the Nazis, Kaenzig explained, adding that he is president of the ProSwastika Alliance (www.proswastika.org), which is dedicated to rehabilitating the swastika and restoring its traditional positive meaning of positive intent and good fortune.
“Variations of the swastika, including the Ugunkrusts, existed centuries before Hitler hijacked it,” he explained. “Before the 1930s, in cultures worldwide, it meant only positive things. But in the West today, there’s lots of misinformation and ignorance about the swastika. Although Hitler appropriated it and dragged it through history’s armpit, it was, and still is, a symbol of peace and good luck for over a billion people worldwide.”
The overseeing entity that assessed the fine, the Russian-based league Kontinental Hockey League, or KHL, is Europe’s largest hockey league. Although the KHL’s initial review found that the depicted symbol had nothing to do with Nazi ideology, referring to it in a preliminary assessment as “an innocent sun symbol,” the KHL subsequently reversed its finding and assessed the fine.
“At first, they listened to an expert in heraldry who said the pre-game symbol was the Ugunkrusts, and not a Nazi emblem,” Kaenzig pointed out. “The fact that they completed changed course and penalized the team means they gave in to pressure from the outside.”
He said the word “swastika” comes from Sanskrit and means “well-being.” A swastika intertwined with a Star of David is the symbol of the Raelian Movement (www.rael.org).
“It was given to Rael by the Elohim, extraterrestrial scientists who came to Earth and created Man in their own image,” Kaenzig said. “They started Earth’s religions and sent us messengers, whom we knew as prophets. They brought messages of peace and harmonious philosophy. Their symbol, the swastika, expressed that philosophy. As a prominent trace left by our creators, it can still be found worldwide in temples, synagogues and churches. Recasting it as a symbol of hate and violence because the Nazis misused it only gives undeserved credit to their horrific ideology. Just as Christians won’t accept the use of their cross to represent the Ku Klux Klan, we cannot accept that the swastika is still being denigrated by associating it with the Nazis. Restoring the original beautiful meaning of this amazing symbol is the only solution!”