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Adolf Hitler

Why Did Hitler choose the Swastika to be the Nazi Symbol?

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February 05, 2010 9:24PM

Hitler wanted a symbol like no other. He wanted something distinct that would stand out when it was carried into battle. ___ The swastika had already been adopted by some extreme German nationalist groups c. 1910 in the belief that it was an "Aryan" symbol.

The swastika (from Sanskrit: svástika) is an equilateral cross with its arms bent at right angles, in either right-facing (卐) form or its mirrored left-facing (卍) form.

Before Hitler, it was used in about 1870 by the Austrian Pan-German followers of Schoenerer, an Austrian anti-Semitic politician.

Its Nazi use was linked to the belief in the Aryan cultural descent of the German people. They considered the early Aryans of India to be the prototypical white invaders and hijacked the sign as a symbol of the Aryan master race.

The Nazi party formally adopted the swastika - what they called the Hakenkreuz, 'the hooked cross' in 1920. This was used on the party's flag, badge, and armband.

In Mein Kampf, Adolf Hitler wrote: 'I myself, meanwhile, after innumerable attempts, had laid down a final form; a flag with a red background, a white disk, and a black swastika in the middle. After long trials I also found a definite proportion between the size of the flag and the size of the white disk, as well as the shape and thickness of the swastika.'