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Okay the thread about the Saddam Insane Fortis got me thinking? Would you buy a watch with a dark sinister history? And if so would you wear it?
That Fortis is a horrible looking piece of tack. But like it or not it has great social and political history (if original). I have a number of watches from the DDR, the former East Germany, which is considered to have been one of the most oppressive regimes in modern social history. The majority of my DDR watches are just normal watches for the people at the time. But one watch is for 30 years’ service in the Stasi. Another an official gift from the SED. And the 3[SUP]rd[/SUP] an award issued to members of the DDR Civil Defence. So all three with a dark history. One watch I really like and have been wearing for two weeks now, but the other two are pretty much Commie tat but I want them for their historical significance. So what are your thoughts? I suppose it really boils down to if you just collect watches and/or have an interest in history also, or not….
 

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Good thread
As for myself I can not wear all those old russian watches
with MADE IN USSR or Cделано в СССР
because CCCP was one of the worst things to happen to Lithuania and it is very insulting to see those watches let alone wear them
No problem with MADE IN RUSSIA or kirilica letters which i can read
 

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A watch is a watch is a watch. Period. Just that - a watch. I find it ridiculous how people shell out tons of money to get hold of Goering's pilot watch or the original watch worn by Rudolf Hess on his flight to England ... or that worn by a soldier in the trenches at Verdun or at Stalingrad or at 'Omaha', 'Juno' or 'Gold'. Because at the end of the day it's just a watch. Either it runs (then it's a good watch) or it doesn't (then it needs a service.) A watch doesn't become evil just because someone evil wrote something in its face or on its back. It still remains a watch.

As simple as that.

If someone feels put off by an individual watch's history, it's a different story - but then, in such a case I'd recommend to just leave it alone.

As for that Saddam thing: this is just bad taste. Like all those allegedly German Army watches sold in the bay, bristling with swastikas and SS-runes. Not evil - just bad taste.

Best,
Tomcat
 

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I pretty much agree with Tomcat on this and add :Evil is as evil does not what evil wears on the wrist.
 

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Nobody is talking about evil watches :)
Would You wear a watch with a name and surname of a person who killed(just an example) Your brother or something like that?
 

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IT's a intersting question. Born as a "West-German" the history of my country has serveral dark points. For myself it's a very interesting fact that I learn a lot of circumstances people live by collecting old watches an make researches about them. Political and historical facts changes also the watch markets. For myself I would never ever buy watches with ****e symbols. They are fortunately vorbidden in germany and many of the people who sell/buy that stuff (you can) often deal with it just because of this symbols. Therefore its a "no Go" and a horror for myself. Watches out of this aera may be with decend army number (I don't have one) would be okay for myself, because this dark area is a part of the history and should not get forgotten. But only if they make a part of the collection "round". The most collectors of east german watches I know are born in east germany and they usually see "Stasie" as a dark part of history but their history and buy them without glorification / misrepresentation like some of the ****e stuff buyer/seller. Therefore I wouldn't avoid them but renounce wearing watches with readable symbols/ stasie signs. You might hurt someone or send wrong signals. This is just my personal perceive about german people/history. Other might feel in another way and with foreign "dark history" its much more difficult to understand the actual feeling/interpretation. Therefore collecting with soft symbols and hidden engravings in respect of the history is okay for me.

KInd regards
 

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Nobody is talking about evil watches :)
Would You wear a watch with a name and surname of a person who killed(just an example) Your brother or something like that?
Are you replying to my post or Tomcats?
 

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I personally wouldn`t wear anything that represents the darker side of human nature,whether it be tshirt`s,badges,or watches.
 
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@ laikrodukas: I agree, this can become very personal. If I laid hands upon, say, a trench watch once worn by the British soldier who shot my great-grandfather's brother at Passchendaele, I don't see a reason why I wouldn't wear it.

If someone killed my brother and was sent to the chair, and his earthly belongings ended in the bay afterwards ... would I bid? Sure. Would I wear it? Less sure - maybe I'd trade it. But that would be very, VERY personal a decision to make ;-)

In the end, no watch in the world was made to be worn by a criminal, regardless of on which scale the wearer was criminal. I bet, Idi Amin's gold watches (if up for auction) would earn a decent sum ;-) Still - wearing them is just bad taste, it doesn't make the wearer any more evil or less good.

Best,
Tomcat
 

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I agree both with does Who say - Watch is a watch and those Who collect and occasionally wear them to preserve the history and to keep the memory, even those bad and dark - to remember and not make it happen again. Once I bought Zentra Dienst Uhr which was in possession of the Luftwaffe soldier - guard form Stalag Luft III Sagan -In the beginning mine feelings were also mixed between keep closed in case or wear occasionally and sometimes discuss to remember - the second option won.

Best Regards Friends!,
Konrad
 

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Being originally from the States, I don't have any of the historical political experiences, direct or indirect that some of you are referencing. As much as I RESPECT the near infinite knowledge Tomcat has on watches, as some of you have referenced it's not easy to separate the physical item (the watch) from the individual or broader society the watch came from or represents.

So using examples on the individual level - say a very nice 18ct gold watch Charles Manson owned or The Zodiac Killer or the Oklahoma City Bombers, Timothy Mcveigh - would I want to own much less wear their watches ? No way at any price - because IMHO you can't separate what they personally owned - from what they represent and espoused and in fact acted upon in violent ways - my 2 pence.

So it's not as simple IMHO as 'a watch is a watch is a watch ' , SDA
 

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A watch worn by an infamous personage, or someone belonging to an infamous organization is to me just a watch. You cannot place intent, evil, or any human sentiment on an inanimate object.
But wearing, owning, or admiring a watch with images of such "people" and organizations is plain sick, as are the fools who make them.
Regards, Bob.
 

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@ Scott: I understand, but I feel different. It's pretty much a thing between one's two ears going on: 'Can I mentally separate the watch from its history, i.e., from who wore it before?' Which actually boils down to 'Do I care, actually?'

You decided for yourself that you wouldn't wear a watch if it turned out that it once belonged to, say, a mass murderer. (Oh wait, did you know your Longines once belonged to Dr. Goebbels? b-)) I, personally, see a beautiful, white dialled Zodiac Sea Wolf, where others see "the watch the Zodiac Killer wore". Obviously, he wore only one watch out of the ten-thousands that must still exist so my chance to get exactly his watch is very slim. And even if it turned out like that - should I care? Did that watch kill all those people? Wouldn't he have killed all those people had he worn a, say, Rolex? Omega? Patek?

To muddle the waters even more, let's stay with the Zodiac Sea Wolf: I just bought one off the bay - as you may know they were sold in PX shops during the Vietnam era, and found much favor with the US soldiers going to Vietnam. Should I be concerned that 'my' Sea Wolf may have been worn by a soldier who participated in the My Lai Massacre? After all, Zodiacs make people bad, as proven by the Zodiac Killer, right?

And what about those Dienstuhren, worn by the very same loyal soldiers without whom little of the German war crimes would have been possible in the first place? Can one wear these and feel good about it? Or should one worry only about the personal watch of one of their fascist leaders? Where would you draw the line? You see, this is not an easy discussion.

That's why I wrote what I think: a watch is a watch is a watch. Nothing else.

Best,
Tomcat
 

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It comes down to intent. Someone buying an geniune SS issued wristwatch from WWII becuase they're an avid history buff and the watch complements their broader collection of WWII memorbilia make perfect sense. Someone buying the exact same watch because they're enamored of the philosphies of the third reich and are looking for subtle ways to promote and glamorize those philosophies is sick and dangerous. Of course, how do you know what someone's intents are?
 

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@Tomcat - following your comments, I would agree that there is uncertainty around linking a specific watch to a specific individual/crime. So yes, if it's a 1:10,000 chance the specific watch in question is Charles Manson's - I broadly agree with you. If the watch even with individual uncertainty as to authenticity represents however en masse something evil, sinister or whatever negative political connotation you want to associate, it's hard to narrowly argue the watch can be separated from the negative connotation. So I tried to use an individual, extreme example where I personally wouldn't want to be seen as directly or indirectly espousing said negative connotation.

So back to comments by SilkeN and Bobbee - whether it's a watch, a piece of jewellery a type of clothing - if in common understanding it has a negative connotation I personally wouldn't want to be associated with indirectly espousing that negative philosophy - like wearing a Swastika. My second two pence = 4 pence ! SDA
 
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Tomcat - put another way, Yes, you can use your 'statistical Get out of Jail Free Card'!! If the watch is one of many ! Scott
 

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No I won't. I believe it has a bad history and why should I put my body near something that is negative.
 
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