Emperor’s new clothes? Germany's Gauland ridiculed after theft leaves him in his underwear (PHOTO)

Emperor’s new clothes? Germany's Gauland ridiculed after theft leaves him in his underwear (PHOTO)
Germany’s AfD co-leader came under a barrage of online mockery after an unknown man stole his clothes while the politician was bathing in a lake. He had to make his way to a police station wearing nothing but his boxer shorts.

It was 32 degrees Celsius (90 Fahrenheit) last Tuesday when co-leader of the Alternative for Germany (AfD) Alexander Gauland went to bathe in Heiliger See in Potsdam which is close to his apartment. While the politician enjoyed warm waters of the lake, a stranger approached his clothes. Shouting “This is no swimming place for Nazis!” he grabbed Gauland’s clothes and ran off, witnesses said.

“My belongings were stolen by someone as I was in the water and other swimmers called the police without asking me,” Gauland explained to the Maerkische Allgemeine newspaper. The 77-year-old lamented that keys in his trousers were among items taken so the whole locking system of his home had to be changed.

In the meantime, a photo of Gauland in boxer shorts walking near police has become a social media hit. The picture has been widely re-tweeted under the hashtag #badespaß (bathing fun). “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” some sarcastically wrote, referring to the Hans Christian Andersen’s story about an emperor who was tricked into wearing no clothes at an official ceremony.

Some people had fun of their own by photoshopping the politician. One pixelated him entirely, except for the shorts.

Others ‘covered’ Gauland with his signature green tie with yellow dogs. He used the ‘lucky tie’ on important occasions, including on election day 2017, press conferences and debates on migration.

A number of apparent Game of Thrones fans compared Gauland’s walk with the notorious Cersei Lannister’s “walk of atonement.” 

Police believe the incident may be politically motivated. Gauland recently made a controversial remark saying that “Hitler and the National Socialists are just bird shit in 1,000 years of successful German history.” His opponents insist that the politician's remark belittled the Holocaust.

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