The Wales international has escaped punishment for his alleged Nazi salute, because he is ‘lamentably ignorant’ of Adolf Hitler and his fascist regime
talkSPORT host Adrian Durham has urged Crystal Palace goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey to visit the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland, after he claimed he knows nothing about Adolf Hitler or Nazi Germany.
The Welshman has escaped punishment for appearing to make a Nazi salute in a photo posted on Instagram by his German team-mate Max Meyer.
An FA panel said on Tuesday that Hennessey did not know what the gesture was – he insists he was waving a waiter over to his table – and remarkably stated the 32-year-old has a ‘lamentable degree of ignorance about anything to do with Hitler, Fascism and the Nazi regime’.
In a powerful statement on Tuesday’s Drivetime show, Durham told the Wales keeper to take a sobering trip to Auschwitz to truly understand the horrors of what occurred during World War 2.
“I don’t expect Hennessey to be a history expert,” the talkSPORT host said.
“I don’t expect him to have read any books or done anything as remotely taxing as that, but at the age of 32, I’d expect Wayne Hennessey to at least have enquired about some of the more important facts connected with Nazi Germany.
“I’m assuming if he doesn’t know what a Nazi salute is, that he’s never heard of the Holocaust, or the thousands who died for his future in the free world.
“When he wore a poppy on his shirt, did he think it was just a pretty flower?
“I don’t expect him to win mastermind. He’s a footballer, I get it, his gifts are with his hands, I don’t expect him to be a brain box, but there is a very serious side to all of this.
“He’s a man who represents his country. He’s a man who’s played for Wales in Germany, and as a representative of his country I expect him to at least have a basic understanding of some historical facts, which should not be ignored.
“For example: if he doesn’t know about the Holocaust, how is he expected to recognise anti-Semitism at football matches?
“Are Crystal Palace proud of the fact that one of their senior players doesn’t recognise what a Nazi salute is?
“If he really is ignorant to the Second World War, the Holocaust and the evils of Nazi Germany, I suggest he should use some of his salary to pay for a trip to Auschwitz.
“You can’t come away from Auschwitz without a profound sense of grief and a deep understanding of the horrors that millions had to go through.
“Is it any wonder football is stuck in the dark ages on so many social issues when we have players like Wayne Hennessey declaring how totally ignorant they are?
“He is effectively ignorant to World War Two. The fact that the panel thought it was a plausible explanation makes me despair even more.”