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This Street Artist Is Covering Swastikas With Messages Of Peace And Love

With a rising nationalistic fervor in European countries abroad, there is a rising group of racists who feel emboldened to share their horrible world view. You don't always have the opportunity to punch a Nazi in the face, but there are other ways to undermine their hateful ideology.

Bored Panda reports that a man named Ibo Omari has started a campaign in Berlin to cover swastikas that have become a more frequent sight on city walls in recent years. It's called #Paintback, and it encourages people to paint over these hate symbols wherever they see them. The group made a short video about their work, which went viral in Germany:

You can see how something starts out as an ugly sign of white nationalism:


And gets undermined by a skilled graffiti artist:


Puzzles are popular:


But they also devote time to the whimsical and elaborate:


You can almost forget what's underneath, though some of the image seems to be mocking the people who were trying to spread their hateful message:

#paintback #berlin

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Sticking their tongues out at hate:

Making them into the insects they are:

You don't even have to be fancy. A few lines and a flower replaces a hate symbol:

Wenn Hakenkreuze über Nacht zu Blumen werden... #paintback

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But if you do, it can be an incredible contribution to the area:

FRÅN HAKKORS TILL KONST 🎨 Gatukonstnärer i Berlin har gått ihop för att bekämpa ökningen av nazistisk graffiti i staden. De målar helt enkelt om hakkorsen till färgglada konstverk. 🎨 ” Jag gillar det för jag tycker inte att hakkors hör hemma i Berlin – det är en stad som är öppen för världen och jag vill försvara det”, säger 17-åriga gatukonstnären Klemens Reichelt till AFP. 🎨 Projektet #PaintBack började förra året efter att en person kom in i en street art-butik för att köpa färg och spraya över ett hakkors på en lekplats. De själva uppskattar att de målat om runt 20 hakkors sen dess. 🎨 Rapporterna om nazistisk graffiti har ökat även i Sverige de senaste åren. 🎨 Foto: Legacy BLN

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News media coverage of Paintback has been pretty positive:

And what's great about it is that literally anyone can pick up a brush and get rid of this hate.