Goebbels own goal

24th November 2006 at 00:00
Staff at a North Carolina high school were horrified earlier this month when a football fixture against another school was prefaced by Joseph Goebbels ranting over the loud speakers. Students had downloaded one of the Nazi propaganda minister's diatribes from the internet, apparently to capture the team's motivational mantra "On to Victory", which a German exchange student had taught his US hosts how to say in German.

Forestview students had only intended to play a snippet including the slogan, but a parent volunteer in charge of the tannoy system "was not paying attention," said Que Tucker, of the North Carolina High School Athletic Association, which investigated the incident. "At the moment it happened, everyone was stunned, amazed and puzzled," she said.

A coach, the parent volunteer and at least one player were suspended for the next match. The team was ordered to write letters of apology to the opposing school and attend a "sensitivity class about hatred and bigotry,"

Ms Tucker said.

The slogan, in English, was originally conceived by one of the team's coaches, who had heard it in the local church where he served as deacon.

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