Gianfranco Bettiol receives wine from a bottle bearing the image of former Nazi dictator of Germany, Adolf Hitler, made by winemaker Alessandro Lunardelli, in a bar in in Acilia, near Rome, in this Aug. 21, 2001 file photo. (AP Photo/Claudia Gazzini)

Winery says Hitler-themed bottles aren't propaganda, 'it's history'

Lunardelli, an Italian winery, has been using Hitler and other fascist dictators to sell their wine for nearly 20 years.

It certainly has always faced its share of criticism, but with a rise in anti-semitism in Europe, many are calling for the winery to change its ways.

The winery contends it's not propaganda "it's history" and treats the marketing as black humor, since Hitler was actually a teetotaler.

KIRO Radio host Tom Tangney said at the heart of the matter, it is not an interest in history or fascist dictators that keeps the winery labeling their bottles with Hitler's face.

It's capitalism. "I think if I ran across it, I would think of it as a novelty item," said Tom. He said if he were to buy a bottle, it certainly wouldn't be to support the Nazi cause.

Tom asked his co-host Ken Schram how he felt about another fascist on display, the Vladimir Lenin statue in Seattle's Fremont neighborhood.

"First of all, Lenin is still revered in Russia," said Schram, but only by some, he admitted after prompting from Tom. "The point here is that there is a certainly level of irony and it's not the same as equating Hitler with the Nazi salute on a wine bottle."

Do you agree with Ken Schram that the Hitler bottle of wine is much worse than the Lenin statue in Seattle?

Alyssa Kleven, MyNorthwest.com Editor
Alyssa Kleven is an editor and content producer at MyNorthwest.com. She enjoys doting over her adorable dachshund Winnie - named for Arcade Fire front-man Win Butler.
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