More ‘Forest Swastikas’ Discovered as Mystery of Origins Persist (PHOTO)
With the help of Google Earth, numerous online forums are now “devoted to identifying Nazi symbols that are visible only from the air,” explains the paper.
Labeling the instances ‘horticultural hate,’ Der Spiegel outlines the history of forest swatikas citing the first instance of a swastika formation discovery which caused a public commotion in 1992, when an intern at a landscaping company in Germany, while searching aerial photographs for irrigation lines, spotted a group of 140 larches in the midst of their fall transformation shaped like a swastika.
The trees, located in Zernikow, a rural town 60 miles from Berlin, dated to the 1930s. Their discovery triggered a host of rumors as to their origin. A local farmer claimed that he had planted the trees as a child, with a forester paying him a few cents for each seedling he put in the ground. Another rumor was that a local Nazi leader ordered the trees planted on the occasion of Hitler’s birthday.
Shrouded in mystery, perhaps the most important result of the find was the awareness that the incident raised. In the early 2000s several reports surfaced of other such occurrences. In Sept. 2006, for example, the New York Times reported on a complete forest near the remote village of Tash-Bashat, in Kyrgystan, shaped as a swastika.