A Turkish advertisement that uses Adolf Hitler to sell men's shampoo has been pulled following protests by the Jewish community in Turkey.
The advertisers said Tuesday that the commercial, which features a clip of Hitler delivering an impassioned speech with a voiceover urging men to use Biomen shampoo, would not be used anymore. The ad ran on a Turkish sports channel.
“Decisive action by the leaders of the Turkish Jewish Community mobilized national and international public opinion against the shockingly offensive use of Hitler imagery for commercial purposes,” said David Harris, executive director of the American Jewish Committee. “And in short order, the company responsible for this outrage reversed course.”
The company's owner, Hulusi Dereci, said he stood behind the commercial but pulled it off the air due to the backlash it received.
He nonetheless continued defending the ad in an interview with Turkish daily Hurriyet
printed Wednesday, saying that if it had featured the father of modern Turkey, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk instead of Hitler, "people would react as if we were mocking him. When it is Hitler, they say we are promoting [him].”
Turkish Jewish community leaders credited leading Turkish newspapers, including Milliyet
, with rallying public criticism of the commercial, and expressed gratitude for supportive commentary in news media and by Jewish organizations around the world, according to AJC.
In the ad, the dubbed-over Hitler says, "If you are not wearing women’s dress, you shouldn’t be using women’s shampoo either!”