A display of Nazi memorabilia in Edinburgh Castle has sparked complaints to Scotland’s Culture Secretary, with museum bosses facing calls to remove the exhibits to avoid “national embarrassment”.
A large Nazi swastika, originally part of a plane that was shot down during World War 2, is included in a display of relics from various conflicts from the 20th century in the National War Museum, on the grounds of the castle.
A description of the object clearly states: “The Nazi ‘swastika’ symbol painted on the fin was cut out and kept as an obvious symbol of the enemy.”
In a letter to Culture Secretary Angus Robertson, general secretary of Alex Salmond’s Alba Party Chris McEleny reported being “disturbed” by the sight of these objects, claiming that the use of a Nazi symbol in the castle is causing “national embarrassment” and he.
Mr McEleny continued: “There is no association whatsoever to Edinburgh Castle and it is a national embarrassment to tourists from across the world to confront them with such artefacts.”
A spokesman for National Museums Scotland said: “The displays reflect the Scottish experiences of war and military service from the 17th century to the present day.
“In particular, the In Defence and Active Service galleries convey a sense of the experience of war as seen through the eyes of Scottish servicemen and women, and it is in this context that material bearing Nazi insignia is displayed, reflecting Scottish military participation in the Second World War.”
A Scottish Government spokesman said: “This is a matter for National Museums Scotland who are responsible for the War Museum.”
In his letter, McEleny also raised concerns about the castle’s “Redcoat Cafe”, named after the red-uniformed British troops who fought against the Jacobites in Scotland.
Mr McEleny wrote: “As you will be aware, Historic Environment Scotland charge a substantial fee to tour the castle but as Scotland’s most visited paid for tourist attraction it is disappointing to see the message promoted by some of the occupants of the castle – which are ignorant to the history of Scotland, none more so than the crudely named ‘Redcoat Cafe’.”
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