As the beachgoers of Long Island soaked up the sun last month, their attention was caught by a light aircraft flying above with a flag trailing behind it. On it was a huge swastika and the web address "proswastika.org". People were outraged. Who was responsible for publicly flaunting this ugly symbol of hate? Neo-Nazis? Pranksters? Neither, apparently.
The Long Island swastika actually belonged to the Raelians – the world's largest "UFO religion" – and the stunt was part of their pro-swastika campaign aimed at rehabilitating the symbol. Not because the Raelians are far-right extremists, they believe the Nazis' hijacking of the ancient Sanskrit peace symbol has been allowed to stand for long enough.