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Ohio candidate's Nazi re-enactments haunt his campaign

By Doug Published: October 11, 2010

A story in the Atlantic about a Toledo area congressional candidate re-enacting Nazi military battles against Russia has stirred national attention.

The Atlantic published photos of Republican Rich Iott in a Nazi uniform posing with friends and his son. Iott defended his activity, which occurred years ago, as historical, an activity he did with his son, and hoped it would not be taken out of context.

"I've always been fascinated by the fact that here was a relatively small country that from a strictly military point of view accomplished incredible things. I mean, they took over most of Europe and Russia, and it really took the combined effort of the free world to defeat them. From a purely historical military point of view, that's incredible."

The Atlantic also posted the group's recruiting video, which critics said rewrite history of Nazi atrocities.

Christopher Browning, a professor of history at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, said, "It is so unhistorical and so apologetic that you don't know to what degree they've simply caught up innocent war memorabilia enthusiasts who love putting on uniforms."

Today (Oct. 11), The Blade is reporting that the second-highest ranking Republican in the House, whip Eric Cantor, expressed disgust with Iott's activities.

Iott is running in Ohio's 9th Congressional district against incumbent Marcy Kaptur.

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