A Greek soccer player used a Nazi salute on the field, and that got him banned, according to a March 17 Chicago Tribune report. AEK Athens midfielder Giorgos Katidis was banned for life by Greece's soccer federation EPO after giving a Nazi salute to his supporters.
A lifetime ban seems harsh, but if the player's Nazi salute was indeed that, perhaps it is an appropriate punishment. Giorgos Katidis made the Nazi salute in celebration of his winning goal over Veria late Saturday evening at Athens Olympic Stadium.
The EPO said,
"The player's action to salute to spectators in a Nazi manner is a severe provocation, insults all the victims of Nazi bestiality and injures the deeply pacifist and human character of the game."
The entire world appeared offended by the player's Nazi salute. It came at an especially horrible time considering that Sunday is the 70th anniversary of World War II Jewish deportation to Nazi concentration camps.
The 20-year-old player, however, denies that his victory celebration was a Nazi salute. In fact, he said that the goal was dedicated to Michalis Pavlis who was sitting in the stands. Giorgos Katidis tweeted,
"I despise fascism. I would not have done it if I knew what something like this meant. I know what the consequences are and I would never have done it."
It is a bit difficult to believe that a person in this world would not know what a Nazi salute meant. Do you believe that it was an accident? Do you think he should be banned for life from soccer?