Just remember, Nazis were NOT fashion-forward

In his previous job as editor of the British monthly _Loaded_, James Brown created a publishing success by unapologetically pandering to the sensibilities of young, male party animals. Now his taste for outrage has lost him his new job — he’s been doing it for a year — as editor of _British_GQ_. His mistake? To include the Nazis on a list of the 20th century’s best-dressed men. The Newhouse family, which owns the magazine, didn’t think his joke was funny. Nicholas Coleridge, managing director of Conde Nast, said in a statement yesterday that Brown’s resignation was by “mutual consent,” adding Brown “is a talented editor … Unfortunately, philosophical differences have arisen between James and Conde Nast.” Brown upset people on both sides of the pond by hailing the style sense of Field Marshal Erwin Rommel and the Nazi army. Ken Jacobson of the Anti-Defamation League told the _New_York_Daily_News_ that the gimmick was “outrageous.” When you do something like this, there’s the possibility of making it hip. People, especially young people, might say, ‘They’re not so bad. Look how well they were dressed.'” Lord Janner, chair of the Holocaust Education Trust, told Britain’s _Leicester_Mercury_: “The image of this general alongside some of the world’s most gifted actors, musicians, and designers makes decent people want to vomit.”

ARTS | Fascist Fashion

_National_Post_ ([email protected])

February 22, 1999, p. D4