Dutch ban mock German helmets at World Cup

AMSTERDAM – Mock German army helmets being marketed in bright orange plastic to Dutch football supporters will be banned in the run-up to the World Cup in Germany this summer, the Dutch football association (KNVB) said Tuesday.

KNVB spokesman Frank Huizinga said the helmets, which have become a hot item among supporters of the Dutch national team – the national colour is orange – would be banned from all stadia during practice matches ahead of the tournament.

The policy has already been implemented. Supporters were not allowed to wear them during the weekend game against Ecuador in the Amsterdam Arena.

“Everything that can be seen as offensive to others, whether chants or a product, are banned in the stadium,” Huizinga told the Telegraaf newspaper.

“And we find this product extremely offensive,” he added.

The company making the helmets said it was considering legal steps against the KNVB.

“It’s nonsense,” company spokesman Floor van Laar said.

“Even the German police have made it known that these little helmets are allowed in the stadia, because they are not Nazi symbols,” he said.

Van Laar pointed out that German fire officers continued to wear helmets of a similar nature.

The helmet was in fact introduced by the German army during World War I, but became better known during World War II, when it began to be associated with the Nazis.

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DPA, via Expatica.com, Germany
Mar. 7, 2006

Religion News Blog posted this on Wednesday March 8, 2006.
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