According to Matthew Fleischer at the LA Weekly, efforts to turn Charles Bukowski's old house into a historic site are being slowed—maybe even derailed—by truly fishy accusations that the half-Jewish author had Nazi sympathies.
Whether the commission believes the charges may be immaterial—it’s how much grief its members are willing to put up with. The bungalow’s owner, Victoria Gureyeva, says she and her lawyer have no plans to ever allow a cultural monument to Charles Bukowski on her property.
“This man loved Hitler,” she insists, citing Pleasants’ writing. “He may be a great writer—I’m not a critic. But that’s what libraries are for. This is my house, not Bukowski’s. I will never allow the city of Los Angeles to turn it into a monument for this man. My grandfather was a Holocaust survivor. I’ll bring the whole Jewish Westside into this debate if I have to. Then what will the city of Los Angeles do?”
As for Bukowski’s own Jewish roots: “He never acknowledged his Jewish side,” Gureyeva argues. “The rumor is that Hitler’s mother was part Jewish. Now we have Bukowski—Hitler number two.”
Swati Pandey at the LA Times was on this story a little while, but Fleischer's version does some more spelunking into the charges.
The Nazi charges stem from a 2003 article in the Hollywood Investigator by longtime Bukowski acquaintance Ben Pleasants titled “When Bukowski Was a Nazi,” which was later expanded into the 2004 biography Visceral Bukowski. Pleasants claims that Bukowski “loved Hitler” and that, as a young man, he wrote several Mein Kampf–inspired stories that were confiscated by the FBI during World War II. But years later, when Bukowski’s FBI file was made public, the stories never appeared.
So... it's a straight-up smear, then. (That's almost a shame, as a Bukowski-ized Mein Kampf carries greater belly-laff potential than the Bukowski-does-Peanuts stories.) Slightly more believeable than the anti-semite accusations hurled at the very Jewish Michael Chabon.