Prince Harry's Nazi costume draws international fire
Prince Harry faced international criticism Thursday for wearing a Nazi soldier costume to a party Saturday, despite his apology for the incident.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles expressed outrage, urging Harry to visit the Auschwitz death camp this month to commemorate the 60th anniversary of its liberation.
"There he will see the results of the hated symbol he so foolishly and brazenly chose to wear," said Rabbi Marvin Hier, founder of the centre.
Israeli Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom said Harry's costume choice went beyond "bad taste" because it could "encourage others to think that perhaps that period was not as bad as we teach the younger generation and the free world."
The 20-year-old prince apologized in a statement after a British tabloid published a picture of Harry, wearing a costume with a swastika armband while holding a cigarette and a drink at a party.
The Sun reported that Harry's photo was taken at a "colonial and native" themed party attended by 250 people including his older brother Prince William, who came dressed as a leopard.
In his statement, Harry said he "was very sorry if I caused any offence or embarrassment to anyone. It was a poor choice of costume and I apologize."
Opposition Conservative Leader Michael Howard said many will be disappointed and offended by his actions and that the prince should apologize in person.
"I think it might be appropriate for him to tell us himself just how contrite he is."
British Prime Minister Tony Blair's office said "clearly an error was made" which has been recognized by Harry, but the matter should be dealt with by Buckingham Palace.
Rabbi Jonathan Romain, a spokesperson for the Reform Synagogues of Great Britain, said Harry recognizes he made a mistake and his apology should be accepted.