June 13, 2024

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Auschwitz Memorial Labels WWE's Concentration Camp Footage at WrestleMania 39 'Shameless'

Auschwitz Memorial Labels WWE’s Concentration Camp Footage at WrestleMania 39 ‘Shameless’

It never hurts to double check. This might just be one of the lessons WWE has to re-learn this week as they are now facing real backlash from fans, casual observers and especially the Auschwitz Memorial after including a photo of the Auschwitz concentration camp in the promotional package for a match between Dominic and Rey Mysterio. The Auschwitz memorial issued a statement about the matter early Wednesday morning, Twitter “The fact that the Auschwitz image was used to promote a WWE match can hardly be called an ‘editorial error’. Exploiting a site that has become a symbol of an immense human tragedy is disgraceful and insults the memory of all the victims of Auschwitz.” NPR reached out To WWE for comment and did not receive a response until the morning of April 6th.

While promotional materials showed Dom talking at length about his time in prison, WWE used plenty of B-roll footage and prison stock throughout the video package. Unfortunately, the Auschwitz photo came out, and fans noticed it right away. However, while playing the same video package later that night, the same image of Auschwitz had already been removed. He also does not appear again during any highlights listing WrestleMania 39, specifically Night One.

Of course, this isn’t the first time WWE has sparked controversy regarding the Nazis or the Holocaust. Most recently, they briefly brought back former co-star Brian Kendrick, despite his past comments about the Holocaust. Meanwhile, last month, Intercontinental Champion GUNTHER denied that Imperium had anything to do with the outbreak. Months earlier, WWE had moved to the “Gunther Stark” brand, which also happened to be the name of a Nazi U-boat captain during World War II, before abandoning their attempts after learning of that context.

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