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September 18, 2014 / 23 Elul, 5774
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Minnesota Nazi Uniform Party Was Just an ‘Historical Exercise’

What would have been the reaction if the actor dressed up as KKK members, just for the sake if history?
These men were just actors and gave out a T-shirt with a swastika for the sake of history.

These men were just actors and gave out a T-shirt with a swastika for the sake of history.
Photo Credit: City Paper

The owner of a Minneapolis, Minnesota restaurant has defended a private party in which men dressed up in SS uniforms and said it was only an exercise for actors who play historical roles and was not meant to praise Hitler.

No one outside of the restaurant knew about the party, or the “event” as the actors called it, until the local City Pages website posted on line a picture of the men in Nazi uniforms in the restaurant, called Gasthof zur Gemutlichkeit.

“By no means do we glorify the edicts of the Third Reich,” said Scott Steben, who characterized himself as a history buff who has landed movie parts as a German soldier. “I understand the sensitivity of the subject matter and everything but it did occur and it is history,” according to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

Steben doesn’t see any difference between actors dressing up as Star Trek characters and as Nazis. It’s all in a day’s work, but where have we heard that before?

The party was held on – are you ready for this – Martin Luther King Day, in late January. Steben said that the event was actually the group’s annual Christmas party, which was booked on a Monday because it is the only day the restaurant is closed.

Wouldn’t it have been interesting to hear the reaction of the actors if they had dressed up as KKK members, not for any reasons of racism, God forbid, but just to act out a bit of American history.

The party was photographed by one of the restaurant’s workers who showed them to his friends. The restaurant owner promptly fired the worker, and it remains to be seen if that is reasonable grounds for dismissal.

The photos showed four Nazi banners hanging in one dining room, and another picture reveals a staff member receiving a black T-shirt with a swastika – all for the sake of history, of course.

Local Jews were understandably upset. “Glorification and/or celebration of Nazi Germany and its military would appear to be incongruous with the nature of a family restaurant and its surrounding neighborhood,” wrote Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas Executive Director Steve Hunegs in a statement.

Two Jewish organizations said they are offering to help the restaurant find a way to honor Minnesota’s World War II veterans and Holocaust survivors by not associating with German military re-enactors.

The restaurant owner Mario Pierzchalsk, a native of Poland, said he has hosted the party for six years. Following the bad publicity, he will not allow the group to stage a similar party next year but said the people who attended “are very peaceful” and are “just actors.”

He was angry at the negative reaction. “We live in a free country…but from the comments I see, a lot of people they don’t see what freedom is. If I break the law, punish me. But we did this for so many years and everything was fine,” he was quoted as saying by the newspaper.

However, he did apologize on Wednesday.” On behalf of everyone who participated in a World War II reenactment dinner last January, I apologize,” read a statement issued by Steben and published in the Star Tribune. “We understand that some of the items we displayed at the dinner have made people feel uncomfortable. That was not our intent.”

Below is the local CBS outlet’s report.

About the Author: Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu is a graduate in journalism and economics from The George Washington University. He has worked as a cub reporter in rural Virginia and as senior copy editor for major Canadian metropolitan dailies. Tzvi wrote for Arutz Sheva for several years before joining the Jewish Press.


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55 Responses to “Minnesota Nazi Uniform Party Was Just an ‘Historical Exercise’”

  1. Wow…looks like such fun….not.

  2. Carolin Knox says:

    Ugh. No shame about this behavior anymore….

  3. Elmer Lee says:

    like this ? funny purim “prank” ?

  4. Just disgusting!!! As an African American JEW, I’m appalled! I think we should all head to Minnesota next month and celebrate Passover at this one * back woods establishment!!! :-(

  5. The Facts Speak For Themselves: Minnesota Muslims are making an ever growing impact on the affairs of the state and the nation – from the first Muslim Congressman (Congressman Keith Ellison) to the largest Somali Muslim population in the United States.

  6. Muslims are full of HATRED! All we can do is pray them and their ALA! Isn’t that what they call their god??

  7. Muslims are murders……

  8. Loren Renee says:

    I thought of that. During civil war enactments the confederate soldiers are generally supporters of slavery and the future kkk, their daddies and grand daddies.

  9. why block out faces if its just harmless history?

  10. This is disgraceful it is not just an Historical exercise it is reprehensible

  11. Roger Gibson says:

    Then they should have included some guys dressed in Allied uniforms, too.

  12. They could have found a different Historical Exercise SCUMS

  13. Samu Pipi says:

    Need a bullet through yoo brain

  14. Like historical exercise, bomb them!!!

  15. I just read about a game children are playing called “jail the Jew” in Boston and now this. Anti-Semitism is alive and well and may we, Jews, not turn a blind eye to it. The Holocaust was not that long ago-never forget and never again!

  16. Cody Flecker says:

    I remember a story back in the 1970's in Minneapolis when the President of the International B;nei B;rith was caught coming back from Cuba on a secret business trip right on Yom Kippur. He went then thinking no one would notice his absence during the High Holy Days. No one cared then in Minneapolis about visiting a country that both hated the USA and Israel, so why should anyone be upset over a party where people wore Nazi uniforms. If the Jews themselves act like Nazis, why should we be concerned over a fictional party?

  17. Whoever heard of a historical reenactment of a dinner? I can't think of one famous meal from WW2, aside from Hitler's last when he at a healthy serving of cyanide in a capsule. If the owner of this restaurant wants to reenact a famous, historical meal, let him reenact Hitler's last meal or maybe the one where the restaurant owner choked on a sausage.

    And he does live in a free country. May the free-market decide his fate. If the locals don't want to support a nazi-worshipper, it's their right. But if society, as a whole, ends up supporting behavior like this, it won't be the last meal in which we see pigs eating pigs.

  18. Boycott this restaurant, hit them in the pocket, that always works.
    These are Nazis plain and simple.

  19. Alan Kardon says:

    It is not only an insult to Jewish people it is an insult to every American. Guess you proved again how brain dead you always are in your comments.

  20. Alan Kardon says:

    Why does the Jewish community have to offer a "plausible solution for their ethnic history?"

  21. Alan Kardon says:

    Why didn't they honor American soldiers for their "Historical Exercise"? Because they are a group of Nazi's hiding behind their 1st Amendment rights. To cowardly to announce or be seen by the American public until now.

  22. Why block the faces, if it's all so harmless…..NOT!!!

  23. Sientje Seinen says:

    Cody Flecker you do sound insensitive, It would open up many wounds and hurts for a lot of people, maybe you didnt lose family in that unnecessary war, but a lot of people did . why was there such secrecy about this party?

  24. Sientje Seinen says:

    Chikamori Mukai what ethnic history are you talking about? they were slaves at one one time remember and God delivered them out of slavery with a mighty hand while few in number, and drove out other nations before them, because they practiced abominable and detestable things in the eyes of the Lord. a lesson we could learn from this dont you think?

  25. Alan Kardon says:

    Chikamori Mukai you still have not answered the question of why the Jewish people have to offer a "plausible solution for their ethnic history?" Nazism has nothing to be proud about and you don't have to be Jewish to realize this. That is why they hide from most true blooded Americans and people of character.

  26. Alan Kardon says:

    Chikamori Mukai Thank you for being so sensitive to this group of Hitler lovers. Proves your head is up Adolph's butt with the rest of this group. I have every right to insult Nazi's and their followers.

  27. Alan Kardon says:

    You are correct in stating that you are completely wrong in defending Nazi's.

  28. Alan Kardon says:

    Yes all Nazi's are racists and murderers. Not one of them will come out in the open and admit it. They were evil and have not changed. Learn what they stand for before trying to defend them. Unless of course you are one of them.

  29. Alan Kardon says:

    Please clarify for me. Who needs a bullet thru the brain?

  30. @Alan Kardon
    My dictionary says, "thoroughly oppresses any dissenting voices is action of fascism."
    I did never defend Nazi, but defended ethnic history against another genocide.
    You should never spin if you believe you are right to fight against racism. You may be victimizer today.

  31. @Alan Kardon
    Can you show me any evidence? Your words have only emotion without logic. Your assumption will only make false charges.

  32. Alan Kardon says:

    Chikamori Mukai History is history. You cannot change it . It is fact. Some try. In this case about Nazism and its atrocities, we are trying to prevent it from ever happening again. NEVER EVER AGAIN.

  33. @Alan Kardon
    Of course, NEVER NEVER should such happen again, I perfectly agree with you. Of course I understand your strong will. That's world common sense, right? My point is how to avoid another genocide which I mentioned deleting ethnic history. That's my first comment.

  34. Alan Kardon says:

    You do not have secret meetings annually to glorify a cause. Owner apologized for getting caught hosting these gatherings. They are guilty of being Nazi supporters, let them prove they are innocent.

  35. AC Stubbs says:

    Yet the cowards hide their faces

  36. AC Stubbs says:

    If I could like it more than once I would-best post

  37. AC Stubbs says:

    Never happened

  38. AC Stubbs says:

    Chikamori Mukai You neend a good therapist

  39. AC Stubbs says:

    And how does anyone fail at teaching their children so badly that said children can't tell the difference between startrek and nazis

  40. Alan Kardon says:

    Yes we have communication gap. When you get to know what a horrible group the Nazi's are then you can comment.

  41. AC Stubbs says:

    Chikamori Mukai you are a liar

  42. AC Stubbs says:

    you can't tell the difference between this and a movie?

  43. Alan Kardon says:

    No we make movies to show the world what trash the Nazi's were and still are. We just expose people who glorify them in real life.

  44. AC Stubbs says:

    Stephen Ballantine how is that working out for you? Oh yeah….total failure Sorry naziboi

  45. Alan Kardon says:

    Why don't you ask Al Sharpton that question?

  46. Alan Kardon says:

    Stephen Ballantine I am not sure of your point of view. Do you support boycotting the restaurant or not?

  47. Alan Kardon says:

    Stephen Ballantine Why not?

  48. Alan Kardon says:

    Stephen Ballantine Your statement says WE and my answer says WE. I never said I alone will solve this problem of Nazi mentality.

  49. Run Guo says:

    Level their building as a leveling exercise, they loves Hitler style, process them in the gas chamber, just for the routine repetition of history.

  50. Alan Kardon says:

    Stephen Ballantine I answered your question with WE because you asked the question with WE. "Don't you have your reading glasses on"? But I will ask you simple question that only needs a yes or no answer. Do you support what the Nazi's have done?

  51. Gary Harper says:

    In America we have freedom of speech. You are allowed to dress and talk stupidly. No one need listen to you. Also, they could boycott this restaurant. Freedom of speech also includes protesting outside, and bringing attention to it. No matter what is said, such a dinner is distasteful and hurtful. I went into the Lion's Den with seven Jewish friends for beer. The lion there gave us such looks of hate. It is the first time I had ever experienced anti-Semitism. I was included as a Jew by proxy. My companions seemed not to notice. People, just let this die out.

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