Nazi Flag Removed From Australia Home After Joint Effort by Angered Residents, Jewish MP and Police
A Nazi flag flying on a private property in Australia, close to a Holocaust survivor’s home, was taken down by local police on Tuesday after a Jewish politician gathered support for its removal, The Jewish Chronicle reported.
David Southwick, a Jewish MP for the Liberal party in the southern state of Victoria, contacted the local municipal council, local police and neighbors to help coordinate efforts to have the flag removed from the property of Bill Cheryl Lawdron in Beulah, a farming town four hours away from Melbourne.
The flag featured a black swastika inside a white circle, and was divided into four red parts, each of which contained German military symbols associated with Nazism, including the Iron Cross.
Local residents told Australia’s Nine television station the flag was “absolutely disgraceful” and threatened to tear it down and burn it. They were caught on film asking Bill to remove the flag, but he refused. Cheryl told local media she had German ancestry and had the right to fly the banner on her property, since displaying Nazi symbols was not illegal under Australian law.
Nine reported that an 83-year-old Holocaust survivor who lived across from the Lawdron residence was suffering horrible flashbacks since the flag was raised a few weeks ago and was too afraid to leave his home.
“He’s still got the tattoo on his arm from being in the concentration camp. Both his parents were gassed, he was next,” one neighbor said, while another added: “He’s quite upset. He wants to be left alone. He’s made a statement to the police. He doesn’t want any trouble with anybody.”
The Lawdrons, who had moved into the neighborhood only a year ago, packed up their trailer and left town after the flag’s removal.