Why a Jewish Man Is Trying to Preserve Nazi Memorabilia

Craig Gottlieb's plan is to make millions from fascist artifacts

Why a Jewish Man Is Trying to Preserve Nazi Memorabilia
Pro-white merchandise being sold by vendors at the Aryan Nations. (David S. Holloway/Getty)
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During an auction of Nazi memorabilia over the weekend in the German town of Kirchheim unter Teck, one of the day’s top sellers was a Jewish man named Craig Gottlieb.

At the auction of Nazi-owned objects like swastika flags, pennants, visor caps, Iron Cross medals, revolvers and trench coats, Gottlieb a good amount of Nazi “militaria” from his own collection, according to Gabe Stutman at The Outline.

Gottlieb, a 48-year-old Marine Corps veteran from California, first became interested in WWII artifacts when his father, also a veteran, gave him a bayonet he brought back from Europe. Fast forward to 2014 and Gotlieb was shelling out seven figures for a collection Nazi of artficats, some of which he sold at the weekend auction.

“I recognized an opportunity to connect with the unique history associated with these,” Gottlieb said. “To do my part to preserve them, make a little bit of money, and move them on. It’s my time to sell. My hope is that it ends here.”

Bidders at the auction had to go through a screening process and certify they did not have any “political motivations” for attempting to purchase the items, but there’s really no way to know for sure the true reasons someone would want to own an item like an iron cross or a shirt worn by Hitler at the 1935 and 1938 “Party Day” rallies.

“It happens to be some of the currency — some of the militaria they collect happens to be Nazi,” Gottlieb said of his customers. “They’re not collecting because they’re Nazis or sympathize with Nazism. They’re not antisemitic and many are Jewish. They just have a fascination with history.”

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