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UPDATE: Plane Flying Over LBI Shows Nazi Symbol; JCC Reacts

An "extraterrestrial" group claims responsibility stating the banner displaying the swastika is misunderstood.

LONG BEACH ISLAND -- A plane that towed a banner displaying the word "Swastika," and showed a swastika intertwined with the Hebrew Star of David, flew over Long Beach Island and along the Jersey Shore on Saturday.

The Long Beach Township Police Department received at least several calls reporting the sighting, according to Bill Gee, a dispatcher with the department. Reports of the plane and banner have been reported as far north as Manhattan.

The plane appears to have been sponsored by an organization connected to the Raelian Movement, which claims life on Earth was created by a species of extraterrestrials.

The Jewish Community Center of Long Beach Island said it is aware of the incident and wants to know more.

"We're trying to find out-- what are their intentions?" said Don Pripstein, the center's president.

In a press release, the group said it intended to fly the banner on Saturday over New York City from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and “along the New Jersey coastline” from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.  Flights were also scheduled for other U.S. cities including Houston, Los Angles, Chicago and Miami. 

Have you seen this plane? Please let us know in comments.

The Raelians' press release also declared Saturday as their "3rd Annual Swastika Rehabilitation Day," and invited Buddhists, Hindus and the numerous spiritual groups who use the swastika as their spiritual symbol to stand up and show their support in cities around the world.

According to its Web site, the swastika is a "symbol of peace and good luck in many Eastern religions." One variation of the symbol on the site shows it intertwined with a hexagram or the Hebrew Star of David and is described as the the “official” symbol of the movement.

This symbol or a slight variation of it is what callers told township police they had seen on Saturday.

Kate B. June 25, 2012 at 07:35 PM
Ah, reclaiming controversial symbols & terms. The LGBT community has had great success in reclaiming "queer," but I can't think of many other instances in which such reclamation has worked. As a Jew, I can say with certainty that no matter how the swastika originated, peaceful roots or not, it will be very, very difficult, if not impossible, for me to ever see it as anything but a symbol of the genocide committed against my ancestors. Some things are better left un-reclaimed.
meridianwoman June 25, 2012 at 09:13 PM
An evil man named Hilter turned the ancient swastika into the most misundertood symbol of our times. The racist KKK burned croses. But the cross symbol continues. The Buddhists, Hopi, Raelians and other groups who embrace the swastika symbol, want people to understand it's history. I read proswastika.org and understand now.
kasyo June 25, 2012 at 10:18 PM
it s important that people get educated and know about the true meaning of the Swastika as a symbol of peace. Then philosophies who are using it for its real meaning don’t have to hind it! It is not because it was high jacked by the Nazis during WW2 that the Swastika, oldest symbol of the world should be banned! Should the people stop wearing the cross because the KKK used it as their symbol?
Lia June 26, 2012 at 01:29 AM
It's time to be awaken from dark side of history.... The swastika is a peace symbols for 1.5 billions people in the world from long long time ago before Nazi hijack this symbol... As long as we keep seeing only sad history and being pathetic, we can not move forward to bright future with LOVE. Please go check more detail history of Swastika→  http://www.proswastika.org/
Kate B. June 26, 2012 at 01:50 AM
It's feeling increasingly clear that someone posted this link on a Raelian site someplace. The loonies are coming out of the woodwork to defend the swastika as a sign of peace...
Dave Sleeper June 26, 2012 at 02:39 AM
Bob Simmons. What a perfect name for a dickbrain
martin sullivan June 26, 2012 at 04:25 AM
dave sleeper your name is the perfect verb to what most people who watch fox noise are doing while hannity is talking with that reagan haircut of his, zzzzzzzzzzzzzz . lol
Dave Sleeper June 26, 2012 at 04:31 AM
martin sullivan your name is the perfect noun for the little piece of crap that has nothing better to do than worry about what T.V. stations other people listen to. Grow up and stop being an ass
Joseph Mahmah June 26, 2012 at 06:44 AM
its increasingly clear that some people are uneducated and narrow minded and go full steam like a runaway train regardless of facts and ignore history that doesn't fit into there ammo box of pity. its come down to people mocking each others names and changing the subject trying to grasp at straws. stop being afraid over an image of something that you think is wrong, maybe the way you think is whats wrong. pagans used the pentagram (star of david) kkk burned the cross Nazis used the swastika you can go on and on its not about what they thought about the images its about what you think now, if you can only see hate and pain in the images then the ones who hate did there job by scaring the simple minded into fear. you fear an image that cant hurt you. just because you don't understand something doesn't make it ok to fear monger.
Donna Griffin June 26, 2012 at 10:28 AM
Sally, I think that your comment is salient and makes great sense (notice that I do not use the term "common sense" - there is no such thing these days). However, the constitution protects freedom of speech. In that right, there is no provision for poor taste and outside of the public safety exemption, people have the right to say despicable things without regard for others "feelings." Personally & on a much less visceral scale, I think that Bill Maher and his anti-woman commentary is distasteful and so "not funny," but he is welcome to spout his ignorance. I can only hope that the more he speaks, the more people realize his inane stupidity. The same holds true here. The swastika strikes a nerve and perhaps opens conversational doors. Parents can remind their kids about the horrific nightmare known as Nazi-occupied Germany...not the spoon-fed, edited version fed to them in schools and textbooks.
Donna Griffin June 26, 2012 at 10:35 AM
Lori...one more thing - In 2012, there is no such thing as a kinder, gentler swastika. To suggest that people "get over it" is the ignorance of which I spoke in my last post.
Mac June 26, 2012 at 11:53 AM
I never realized before this article that not knowing everything classified me as an uneducated jerk. Oh well, at least it is a step up from being classified as just an ordinary jerk. I must admit that I didn't know the swastika symbol had a history, much less what it was. Frankly, I never gave it any thought. And now that I have learned the symbol represented other meanings before Hitler, not much has changed in how I view it today. Having been born the day after WWII was declared officially over, I have never viewed nor given any thought to the swastika representing anything but evil. And now that I have been enlightened on the subject, my feelings remain the same. Anyone associating themselves with the swastika symbol is not going to get a positive response from me regardless of their intensions or this ancient history lesson. Ever.
Rick June 26, 2012 at 01:12 PM
The US 45th Infantry adopted the swastika as their division patch in the early 1920s because it was stationed in the southwestern US and it was in fact an Indian symbol in that area. With the rise of Nazi Germany they changed their insignia in 1939 to a Thunderbird , also a southwestern Indian symbol.
Rick June 26, 2012 at 01:19 PM
A pentagram is a "Star of David"? A pentagram is a FIVE sided star as its name implies. PENTA, five sided as in Pentagon. BTW, It is a Star of David, it is a Shield of David. By either name it is a hexagram, six sided.
Michael Waters June 26, 2012 at 04:30 PM
Your post is a clear example of what's wrong with many people today ! Having a closed mind ! You can not graft a new idea on to a closed mind, even when shown the thinking is flawed ! So, many cling to their flawed ideas because they do not have the strength of character to admit when their wrong, even in the face of overwhelming evidence of the facts ! One of the things that makes this country great is the fact that this group has the right to do this in a peaceful way. They did not force me to look at it and anyone that did see it and was upset ( however misguided that might be ) can go right over to that place of business and have them tow a banner with their message, as to why they thought it was in bad taste. I do wish that the symbol in question was disassociated from the Nazi's and their regime of hate, as it was and still is a symbol of good luck in many cultures around the world ( in the 20's, 30's & 40's many U.S.A. sport teams even had the symbol on the front of their jerseys & even called themselves the " Swastikas " ). People need to stop assuming ( we all know the old joke about assumptions... makes an ASS out of U and ME ). People who saw this symbol automatically assumed it was a message of hate and never checked out this groups web site. They have a very long campaign ahead of them to try to get though to the many closed minded people before the symbol will be seen for what it always was and still is ! Notice, no name calling. Grow up, folks !
Chris L June 26, 2012 at 04:56 PM
I agree there is alot of hate behind the symbol ed, but its the way its used that matters. Think about the confederate flag, a symbol that is often seen as a cry for racism and hate, yet it holds a strong history and the way it is used is more important than anything. Just like burning a flag, or hating the president, you might not have to agree with their opinions but you should respect their rights to express said opinions
Michael Waters June 26, 2012 at 05:07 PM
Some people believe that the display of any sort of Swastika should be forbidden because it is offensive to Jews. From first-hand experience, I can assure you that dozens of elderly German Jews I personally know who lived through or escaped the holocaust, were and are well aware that the Swastika predated the Nazis and do not consider it a Nazi symbol. One thing most of them have learned -- and have taught to me -- is that RELIGIOUS TOLERANCE is a key to preventing future holocausts. Therefore they honour and respect the religious iconography of others. including the Jain's and the Hindus, who revere the Swastika as a symbol of long life, good health, and good luck ! As I said in the post above, don't assume it stands for hate until you KNOW how it is being used ! TOLERANCE is what makes our country great ! !
peter mc cormack June 26, 2012 at 06:24 PM
great michael waters says he knows a few elderly jews who have no beef with the swastika of course he forgets the millions of jews worldwide who will never forget what it means to them. dolts like lori and dave sleeper who say " hey its in the past get over it" thats the point these pinheads will never get if history is forgotten then it can be repeated. the big defense of the symbol here is that sun worshippers 2000 yrs used it. too bad those who have generations born in the 20th century could care less what an ancient race of people used it for . hitler used it in world war 2 and for decades skinheads and the kkk have used it. if it had a peaceful status back when the incas were building their temples its been lost to its much darker form in the 20th century and "so much to say" our first "addenment" rights are important but you still cant incite a riot or yell fire in a movie theatre without facing prosecution for being a bonehead. too bad lori and dave sleeper are so self involved that they cant see that.all of you who think its no big deal should pay a visit to the simon wiesenthal center and share your views that its no big woop to them. get back to us on that will you?
Mac June 26, 2012 at 06:27 PM
Thank you for your self-righteous response. When I posted my comment, I knew I was guaranteed this shot was coming. I just didn't know what handle/handles would be attached to it. What overwhelming evidence of the facts do I not have the strength of character to admit that I was wrong about? I understand the swastika has various meanings to various peoples throughout the world. However, in America, the swastika has represented evil for 70+ years unchallenged. My closed mind is unlikely to change on this subject just because you think we should embrace some of the habits of other cultures. By your own posting, the USA sport teams banned the use of the swastika symbol and don't seem to be in any hurry to adjust that action. If you want to identify with the swastika, you have every right, even a duty perhaps. And if you want to put a bumper sticker on your vehicle that says 'I hate cops' because you feel you have a good reason for doing so, again feel free to proceed. But please, don't expect my closed mind to stand up for you in either case, because by your standards, I am all that is wrong with America. I'm not assuming that, am I?
peter mc cormack June 26, 2012 at 06:32 PM
for the record lori and davey asleep fox news is owned by rupert murdoch who is currently going through weeks of trials in london because he hacked the phone of a murdered teenage girl (giving her family false hope she was alive), also the phones of families of slain soldiers and 9/11 families all to sell papers and have nitwits watch fox. the second biggest owner of fox is a saudi prince who supports sharia law who offered rudy giuliani $10 million if he would say 9/11 was our fault. bain capital also owns clear channel who have employees like michael savage , sean race baiter hannity and drug addict rush limbaugh. fox viewers are simply drones who are programmed what to think and say in the hope that maybe someday fox will send them a t shirt for their neverending promotion of fox news.
peter mc cormack June 26, 2012 at 06:40 PM
i think the genius of dave asleep said it best when the best response he had for the claims made against fox was that the guy was a "dickbrain" or lori who replied " nothing you say on hear will be taken seriously" yes lori and dave nothing that comes from the illiterate people like yourselves or any fox viewer should be considered before reading brilliant statements such as these.lol
Evernotice June 26, 2012 at 07:01 PM
"TOLERANCE is what makes our country great ! !" lol While your digging up facts about the Swastika in Wikipedia to show everyone how smart you are...why dont you look up some facts on America's history of tolerance.
Michael Waters June 26, 2012 at 07:38 PM
From the article above..... " The Jewish Community Center of Long Beach Island said it is aware of the incident and wants to know more." " We're trying to find out-- what are their intentions ? " said Don Pripstein, the center's president. " The group that paid to have the banner flown over the beach has responded to the question asked by Don Pripstein, the center's president....( Below is the link to the letter that was sent to him. ) " Letter to the President of the Jewish Community Center of Long Beach Island " http://www.proswastika.org/news.php Amazing what a little research will turn up. I must say that I have to respect what they are trying to do even if I don't believe in their core beliefs. At least they are up front with what they are trying do and it seems to me, doing their best to be respectful by writing to Don Pripstein-The Jewish Community Center President directly ! I would be very interested to know if Mr.Pripstein writes a response to this letter and now that he has seen what their intentions are, exactly how does he feel about their mission to reclaim the Swastika ? I would hope that the authors of this article would contact him and do an update. Judging from all the comments posted, I think it would certainly be newsworthy ! For the folks above that responded to my posts, thank you for your opinions, I will give them some thought. The symbol has been used for good for 3000 years, before Hitler.
Donna Griffin June 26, 2012 at 08:38 PM
Lori is a plant. She is no more a conservative or Fox News listener than I am a swim suit model. She did, however, have you all going for a good long while. In truth, she voted for Obama and will be doing so again in November. She's good with Freedom of Speech....provided you agree with her!
Joseph Mahmah June 26, 2012 at 11:20 PM
The so-called “Star of David” is essentially a “hexagram,” nothing more, nothing less. There is no Biblical or Jewish evidence that traces this ancient occult symbol with king David of Israel. However, there is evidence that it was used by king Solomon, after he turned to pagan gods and the occult, late in his life.
Rick June 27, 2012 at 03:44 AM
I find it difficult to take anyone seriously when they display a lack of knowledge of spelling, punctuation, capitalization or even know the difference between 'hear' and 'here'.
Rick June 27, 2012 at 03:47 AM
Did you mean sanatorium? If so, you must be the last person to use that term in the past 40 years.
Rick June 27, 2012 at 03:53 AM
Or ask LBJ and the military equipment manufacturers in the '60s.
Rick June 27, 2012 at 04:00 AM
Gosh, I am so glad to hear that the stuff on Fox News isn't true. Over ten years ago they reported that two large aircraft crashed into the twin towers in NY and they collapsed. Then a few years later they reported that some guy named Barack Obama was elected President. I am just so glad none of that was true.
Rick June 27, 2012 at 04:18 AM
Peter, did you know that Savage, Hannity and Limbaugh are commentators, not reporters? Commentators express their options as permitted by the 1st Amendment to the US Constitution. If you don't agree with their opinions perhaps you should limit your viewing to PMSNBC.

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