A dog that mock-saluted Adolf Hitler was the subject of an exhaustive investigation involving no less that three Nazi ministries.
I would dearly like to report that this was revealed by Wikileaks, but such was not the case. It was, in fact, a researcher rummaging through old files in the political archives of the German Foreign office who made the epochal discovery.
The dog, Jackie, was a mutt owned by Tor Borg, a businessman from the Finnish city of Tampere. Borg’s wife Josefine, a German citizen known for her anti-Nazi sentiments, dubbed the dog Hitler because of the strange way it raised its paw high in the air like Germans greeting the Fuehrer with a cry of “Heil Hitler!”
In the middle of the Second World War — months before Hitler ordered some 4.5 million troops to invade the Soviet Union — the Foreign Office in Berlin commanded its diplomats in the Nazi-friendly Nordic country to gather evidence on the dog, and even came up with plans to destroy the pharmaceutical wholesale company of its owner.
I’m not necessarily being sarcastic when I use the word “epochal.” Such apparently trivial anecdotes reveal volumes about the regime in question. It was, after all, the Nazis’ anal fascination with detail that fully documented the Holocaust.
At the risk of self-Godwinning, this species of micromanaging does remind me of someone. I think I may have a name for my next dog. :)