Texas councilman draws outrage over Hitler video spoof

A Galveston city councilman said he didn't mean to cause offense when he played an Adolf Hitler spoof video during a public meeting that was carried live on TV and online.

The video that Norman Pappous played during a city council workshop Wednesday on rewriting land-use rules made light of bureaucracy. The clip, taken from the 2004 movie "Downfall," shows an actor portraying the German dictator ranting in the waning days of the Third Reich.

Hundreds of parody videos have been created from this clip, carrying usually amusing English subtitles that veer away from the original script.

"I have nothing to apologize for," Pappous told the Houston Chronicle on Thursday.

The meeting was broadcast live via Galveston's municipal cable TV channel and streamed online.

"I thought it was pathetic and I thought it was offensive to anyone who lost family during the Holocaust," said former Galveston Mayor Lewis Rosen.

A recording of the broadcast is usually posted on the city's website. City spokeswoman Kala McCain told the Galveston County Daily News that the video was removed following complaints.

"It is available at the city secretary's office," McCain said.

Mayor Jim Yarbrough said he'll apologize at an upcoming council meeting for allowing the nearly five-minute video to be played.

"I truly believe it was just a spoof and a parody on our (planning) process and our City Council," Yarbrough said. "But pictures of Hitler and his inner circle group is something that shouldn't have continued."