Zippo withdraws offensive lighters sold by German retailer of neo-Nazi propaganda

Zippo’s German distributor is withdrawing a number of lighters bearing militaristic designs after they showed up on an extremist website that sells anti-Semitic and neo-Nazi clothing and accessories.

Zippo Manufacturing Co. is the venerable Pennsylvania company that produced the offensive lighters. Zippo says it had no idea the designs carried a negative connotation and apologized for bringing the lighters to market.

One lighter bears the image of a soldier and the word “Landser.” That’s an old German word for foot soldier, but also the name of a German neo-Nazi rock band whose members were convicted of hate crimes a decade ago.

Nazi imagery is illegal in Germany.