In 1941, America entered World War II to combat the evil of Nazi Germany. Millions died to eradicate Nazi imagery and ideology during the war and those who uttered “Sieg Heil” or “Heil Hitler” and gave the one handed salute were enemies of America and humanity. Now, with the election of President-elect Donald Trump, the salute is back in style among the White elite and was on full display at a Washington, D.C. area restaurant.
The National Policy Institute (NPI) is a White nationalist and alt-right organization that has seen increased membership and activity during the Trump campaign. The NPI reserved the popular restaurant Maggiano’s Little Italy in Friendship Heights under a false name for this past Friday night. During the event, many of the guests shouted “Sieg Heil” (German for “Hail Victory”) and posed for images. Among those in attendance was former reality star Tila Tequila who also gave the Nazi salute. When the restaurant realized they were taken over by White supremacists, they allowed the party to continue but closed its doors.
The owners of Maggiano’s Little Italy issued the following statement on its Facebook page:
“On Friday night, Maggiano’s in Friendship Heights was the inadvertent site of a protest that caused us to close our restaurant to protect the safety of our Teammates and Guests.
The protesters were upset because of a banquet we were hosting for a group called the National Policy Institute (NPI). This was a last minute booking made Friday afternoon, and the reservation was made under a different name, therefore we were not aware that NPI was dining with us or what the group represents. After the event, an attendee sent a tweet in which she made a “Sieg Heil salute” in support of Hitler and white supremacy. This expression of support of Hitler is extremely offensive to us, as our restaurant is home to Teammates and Guests of every race, religion and cultural background.
We want to sincerely apologize to the community of Friendship Heights for inadvertently hosting this meeting, which resulted in hateful sentiment. We want you to know that at the suggestion of one of our Guests, we are donating the profits from our restaurant sales on Friday, $10,000, to the DC office of the Anti-Defamation League, which for decades has been working to bring people together in peace and understanding.”
The Friday night dinner was followed by a conference held by the NPI which was marked with violent protests. The event hosted at least 250 attendees and featured panel discussions on Trump and the group’s White power ideology. Tequila tweeted an image of herself and two other men giving the Nazi salute and the image was reported to Twitter. Her account has now been suspended because the image violated Twitter’s terms of service agreement.