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Footage of Young Queen Elizabeth Giving Nazi Salute Causes Controversy in Britain

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A British tabloid newspaper has published footage of Queen Elizabeth II giving a Nazi salute as a child.

The tape, shot in 1933, appears on the website of the Sun, and in still form in the newspaper. It depicts Elizabeth, her mother, her sister Margaret and her uncle Edward (later Edward VIII) playing at Balmoral in Scotland. The degree to which Edward, who reigned for about 11 months in 1936 before abdicating, was sympathetic to the Nazis has long been the subject of historical speculation, while his successor, George VI, led Britain through World War II.

Buckingham Palace released a statement after the video was published, saying, “It is disappointing that film, shot eight decades ago and apparently from Her Majesty’s personal family archive, has been obtained and exploited in this manner.” The Sun‘s own coverage includes a military historian’s attempt to put the gesture in its historical perspective: “I don’t think there was a child in Britain in the 1930s or ’40s who has not performed a mock Nazi salute as a bit of a lark.”



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