Foreign Exchange Rates for U.S. Dollars

The figures are presented as a percent of GDP. Ancient Greek architectural designs are replete with the interlinking symbol. This entry gives the value of shares issued by publicly traded companies at a price determined in the national stock markets on the final day of the period indicated. Additionally, the World entry includes a list of the ten largest urban agglomerations. In Thailand , the word Sawaddi is normally used as a greeting that simply means "hello"; Sawaddi-ka feminine and Sawaddi-krup masculine.

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Mother's mean age at first birth: This entry provides the mean average age of mothers at the birth of their first child. It is a useful indicator for gauging the success of family planning programs aiming to reduce maternal mortality, increase contraceptive use — particularly among married and unmarried adolescents — delay age at first marriage, and improve the health of newborns.

The maternal mortality rate MMR is the annual number of female deaths per , live births from any cause related to or aggravated by pregnancy or its management excluding accidental or incidental causes.

The MMR includes deaths during pregnancy, childbirth, or within 42 days of termination of pregnancy, irrespective of the duration and site of the pregnancy, for a specified year. This entry gives the number of deaths of infants under one year old in a given year per 1, live births in the same year.

This rate is often used as an indicator of the level of health in a country. Life expectancy at birth: This entry contains the average number of years to be lived by a group of people born in the same year, if mortality at each age remains constant in the future. Life expectancy at birth is also a measure of overall quality of life in a country and summarizes the mortality at all ages.

It can also be thought of as indicating the potential return on investment in human capital and is necessary for the calculation of various actuarial measures. This entry gives a figure for the average number of children that would be born per woman if all women lived to the end of their childbearing years and bore children according to a given fertility rate at each age.

The total fertility rate TFR is a more direct measure of the level of fertility than the crude birth rate, since it refers to births per woman. This indicator shows the potential for population change in the country. A rate of two children per woman is considered the replaceme.

This field gives the percent of women of reproductive age who are married or in union and are using, or whose sexual partner is using, a method of contraception according to the date of the most recent available data.

It is also useful in understanding, past, present, and future fertility trends, especially in developing countries. This entry provides the total expenditure on health as a percentage of GDP. This entry gives the number of medical doctors physicians , including generalist and specialist medical practitioners, per 1, of the population.

Medical doctors are defined as doctors that study, diagnose, treat, and prevent illness, disease, injury, and other physical and mental impairments in humans through the application of modern medicine.

They also plan, supervise, and evaluate care and treatment plans by other health care providers. The World Health Organization estimates that f. This entry provides the number of hospital beds per 1, people; it serves as a general measure of inpatient service availability. Hospital beds include inpatient beds available in public, private, general, and specialized hospitals and rehabilitation centers. In most cases, beds for both acute and chronic care are included.

Because the level of inpatient services required for individual countries depends on several factors - such as demographic issues and the burden of disease - there is. This entry provides information about access to improved or unimproved drinking water sources available to segments of the population of a country. Improved drinking water - use of any of the following sources: Unimproved drinking water - use of any of the following sources: This entry provides information about access to improved or unimproved sanitation facilities available to segments of the population of a country.

Improved sanitation - use of any of the following facilities: Unimproved sanitation - use of any of the following facilities: This entry gives an estimate of all people adults and children alive at yearend with HIV infection, whether or not they have developed symptoms of AIDS.

This entry gives an estimate of the number of adults and children who died of AIDS during a given calendar year. This entry lists major infectious diseases likely to be encountered in countries where the risk of such diseases is assessed to be very high as compared to the United States. These infectious diseases represent risks to US government personnel traveling to the specified country for a period of less than three years.

The degree of risk is assessed by considering the foreign nature of these infectious diseases, their severity, and the probability of being affected by the diseases present. Obesity - adult prevalence rate: This entry gives the percent of a country's population considered to be obese.

BMI is calculated by taking a person's weight in kg and dividing it by the person's squared height in meters. Children under the age of 5 years underweight: This entry gives the percent of children under five considered to be underweight. Underweight means weight-for-age is approximately 2 kg below for standard at age one, 3 kg below standard for ages two and three, and 4 kg below standard for ages four and five. This statistic is an indicator of the nutritional status of a community.

This entry provides the public expenditure on education as a percent of GDP. This entry includes a definition of literacy and Census Bureau percentages for the total population, males, and females. There are no universal definitions and standards of literacy.

Unless otherwise specified, all rates are based on the most common definition - the ability to read and write at a specified age. Detailing the standards that individual countries use to assess the ability to read and write is beyond the scope of the Factbook. Information on literacy, while not a perfect measu.

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education: School life expectancy SLE is the total number of years of schooling primary to tertiary that a child can expect to receive, assuming that the probability of his or her being enrolled in school at any particular future age is equal to the current enrollment ratio at that age.

Caution must be maintained when utilizing this indicator in international comparisons. For example, a year or grade completed in one country is not necessarily the same in terms of educational content or qualit. This entry includes all forms of the country's name approved by the US Board on Geographic Names Italy is used as an example: Also see the Terminology note.

This entry gives the basic form of government. Definitions of the major governmental terms are as follows. Note that for some countries more than one definition applies. Absolute monarchy - a form of government where the monarch rules unhindered, i.

Anarchy - a condition of lawlessness or political disorder brought about by the absence of governmental authority. Authoritarian - a form of government in whic. This entry gives the name of the seat of government, its geographic coordinates, the time difference relative to Coordinated Universal Time UTC and the time observed in Washington, DC, and, if applicable, information on daylight saving time DST. Where appropriate, a special note has been added to highlight those countries that have multiple time zones.

This entry generally gives the numbers, designatory terms, and first-order administrative divisions as approved by the US Board on Geographic Names BGN. Changes that have been reported but not yet acted on by the BGN are noted.

Geographic names conform to spellings approved by the BGN with the exception of the omission of diacritical marks and special characters. For most countries, this entry gives the date that sovereignty was achieved and from which nation, empire, or trusteeship.

For the other countries, the date given may not represent "independence" in the strict sense, but rather some significant nationhood event such as the traditional founding date or the date of unification, federation, confederation, establishment, fundamental change in the form of government, or state succession.

For a number of countries, the establishment of statehood. This entry gives the primary national day of celebration - usually independence day. The history subfield includes the dates of previous constitutions and the main steps and dates in formulating and implementing the latest constitution.

This entry provides the description of a country's legal system. A statement on judicial review of legislative acts is also included for a number of countries. The legal systems of nearly all countries are generally modeled upon elements of five main types: International law organization participation: This entry provides information related to the acquisition and exercise of citizenship; it includes four subfields: This entry gives the age at enfranchisement and whether the right to vote is universal or restricted.

The highest court s subfield includes the name s of a country's highest level court s , the number and titles of the judges, and the types of cases heard by the court, which commonly are based on civil, criminal, administrative, and constitutional law. A number of countries have separate constitutional courts. The judge selection and term of office subfield includes the organizations and associated officials responsible for nominating and appointing j.

Supreme Court consists of chief and deputy chief justices and 5 judges. High Court; Court of Appeal; military courts; magistrates' courts; religious courts. This entry includes five subentries: Chief of state includes the name, title, and beginning date in office of the titular leader of the country who represents the state at official and ceremonial functions but may not be involved with the day-to-day activities of the government.

Head of government includes the name, title of the top executive designated to manage the executive branch of the government, a. Cabinet appointed by the president, subject to confirmation by the National Assembly.

This entry has three subfields. The description subfield provides the legislative structure unicameral — single house; bicameral — an upper and a lower house ; formal name s ; number of member seats; types of constituencies or voting districts single seat, multi-seat, nationwide ; electoral voting system s ; and member term of office.

The elections subfield includes the dates of the last election and next election. Senate 67 seats; 47 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote and 20 directly elected by proportional representation vote - 16 women, 2 representing youth, and 2 representing the disabled; members serve 5-year terms National Assembly seats; members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote, 47 women in single-seat constituencies elected by simple majority vote, and 12 members nominated by the National Assembly - 6 representing youth and 6 representing the disabled; members serve 5-year terms.

Senate - last held on 8 August next to be held in August National Assembly - last held on 8 August next to be held in August Political parties and leaders: This entry includes a listing of significant political parties, coalitions, and electoral lists as of each country's last legislative election, unless otherwise noted. This entry lists in alphabetical order by abbreviation those international organizations in which the subject country is a member or participates in some other way.

Diplomatic representation in the US: This entry includes the chief of mission, chancery address, telephone, FAX, consulate general locations, and consulate locations. Such ambassadors fulfill all diplomatic functions except meeting with or appearing at functions attended by the president until such time as they formally present their credentials at a White Hou.

Diplomatic representation from the US: This entry includes the chief of mission, embassy address, mailing address, telephone number, FAX number, branch office locations, consulate general locations, and consulate locations. United Nations Avenue, Nairobi; P. Box Village Market, Nairobi American Embassy Nairobi, U. Department of State, Washington, DC This entry provides a written flag description produced from actual flags or the best information available at the time the entry was written.

The flags of independent states are used by their dependencies unless there is an officially recognized local flag. Some disputed and other areas do not have flags. A national symbol is a faunal, floral, or other abstract representation - or some distinctive object - that over time has come to be closely identified with a country or entity.

Not all countries have national symbols; a few countries have more than one. A generally patriotic musical composition - usually in the form of a song or hymn of praise - that evokes and eulogizes the history, traditions, or struggles of a nation or its people. National anthems can be officially recognized as a national song by a country's constitution or by an enacted law, or simply by tradition. Although most anthems contain lyrics, some do not. This entry briefly describes the type of economy, including the degree of market orientation, the level of economic development, the most important natural resources, and the unique areas of specialization.

It also characterizes major economic events and policy changes in the most recent 12 months and may include a statement about one or two key future macroeconomic trends.

GDP purchasing power parity: This entry gives the gross domestic product GDP or value of all final goods and services produced within a nation in a given year. A nation's GDP at purchasing power parity PPP exchange rates is the sum value of all goods and services produced in the country valued at prices prevailing in the United States in the year noted.

This is the measure most economists prefer when looking at per-capita welfare and when comparing living conditions or use of resources across countries. GDP official exchange rate: The measure is simple to compute and gives a precise measure of the value of output. Many economists prefer this measure when gauging the economic power an economy maintains vis-. GDP - real growth rate: This entry gives GDP growth on an annual basis adjusted for inflation and expressed as a percent.

The growth rates are year-over-year, and not compounded. This entry shows GDP on a purchasing power parity basis divided by population as of 1 July for the same year. Gross national saving is derived by deducting final consumption expenditure household plus government from Gross national disposable income, and consists of personal saving, plus business saving the sum of the capital consumption allowance and retained business profits , plus government saving the excess of tax revenues over expenditures , but excludes foreign saving the excess of imports of goods and services over exports.

The figures are presented as a percent of GDP. GDP - composition, by end use: This entry shows who does the spending in an economy: The distribution gives the percentage contribution to total GDP of household consumption, government consumption, investment in fixed capital, investment in inventories, exports of goods and services, and imports of goods and services, and will total percent of GDP if the data are complete.

GDP - composition, by sector of origin: This entry shows where production takes place in an economy. The distribution gives the percentage contribution of agriculture, industry, and services to total GDP, and will total percent of GDP if the data are complete.

Agriculture includes farming, fishing, and forestry. Industry includes mining, manufacturing, energy production, and construction. Services cover government activities, communications, transportation, finance, and all other private economic activities that do not prod.

This entry is an ordered listing of major crops and products starting with the most important. This entry provides a rank ordering of industries starting with the largest by value of annual output. Industrial production growth rate: This entry gives the annual percentage increase in industrial production includes manufacturing, mining, and construction.

This entry contains the total labor force figure. Labor force - by occupation: This entry lists the percentage distribution of the labor force by sector of occupation. Services cover government activities, communications, transportation, finance, and all other economic activities that do not produce material goods.

The distribution will total less than percent if the data are incomplete and may range from percent due to rounding. This entry contains the percent of the labor force that is without jobs. Substantial underemployment might be noted. Population below poverty line: National estimates of the percentage of the population falling below the poverty line are based on surveys of sub-groups, with the results weighted by the number of people in each group. Definitions of poverty vary considerably among nations.

For example, rich nations generally employ more generous standards of poverty than poor nations. Household income or consumption by percentage share: Data on household income or consumption come from household surveys, the results adjusted for household size. Nations use different standards and procedures in collecting and adjusting the data. Surveys based on income will normally show a more unequal distribution than surveys based on consumption.

The quality of surveys is improving with time, yet caution is still necessary in making inter-country comparisons. Distribution of family income - Gini index: This index measures the degree of inequality in the distribution of family income in a country.

The index is calculated from the Lorenz curve, in which cumulative family income is plotted against the number of families arranged from the poorest to the richest. The index is the ratio of a the area between a country's Lorenz curve and the 45 degree helping line to b the entire triangular area under the 45 degree line. The more nearly equal a country's income distribution, the closer its. This entry includes revenues, expenditures, and capital expenditures. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.

Taxes and other revenues: This entry records total taxes and other revenues received by the national government during the time period indicated, expressed as a percent of GDP. Taxes include personal and corporate income taxes, value added taxes, excise taxes, and tariffs. Other revenues include social contributions - such as payments for social security and hospital insurance - grants, and net revenues from public enterprises. Normalizing the data, by dividing total revenues by GDP, enables easy comparisons acr.

This entry records the difference between national government revenues and expenditures, expressed as a percent of GDP. Normalizing the data, by dividing the budget balance by GDP, enables easy comparisons across countries and indicates whether a national government saves or borrows money.

Countries with high budget deficits relat. This entry records the cumulative total of all government borrowings less repayments that are denominated in a country's home currency. Public debt should not be confused with external debt, which reflects the foreign currency liabilities of both the private and public sector and must be financed out of foreign exchange earnings.

This entry identifies the beginning and ending months for a country's accounting period of 12 months, which often is the calendar year but which may begin in any month. All yearly references are for the calendar year CY unless indicated as a noncalendar fiscal year FY. Inflation rate consumer prices: This entry furnishes the annual percent change in consumer prices compared with the previous year's consumer prices.

Central bank discount rate: This entry provides the annualized interest rate a country's central bank charges commercial, depository banks for loans to meet temporary shortages of funds.

Commercial bank prime lending rate: This entry provides a simple average of annualized interest rates commercial banks charge on new loans, denominated in the national currency, to their most credit-worthy customers. Stock of narrow money: This entry, also known as "M1," comprises the total quantity of currency in circulation notes and coins plus demand deposits denominated in the national currency held by nonbank financial institutions, state and local governments, nonfinancial public enterprises, and the private sector of the economy, measured at a specific point in time.

National currency units have been converted to US dollars at the closing exchange rate for the date of the information. Because of exchange rate moveme.

Stock of broad money: This entry covers all of "Narrow money," plus the total quantity of time and savings deposits, credit union deposits, institutional money market funds, short-term repurchase agreements between the central bank and commercial deposit banks, and other large liquid assets held by nonbank financial institutions, state and local governments, nonfinancial public enterprises, and the private sector of the economy. National currency units have been converted to US dollars at the closing exchange r.

Stock of domestic credit: This entry is the total quantity of credit, denominated in the domestic currency, provided by financial institutions to the central bank, state and local governments, public non-financial corporations, and the private sector.

The national currency units have been converted to US dollars at the closing exchange rate on the date of the information. Market value of publicly traded shares: This entry gives the value of shares issued by publicly traded companies at a price determined in the national stock markets on the final day of the period indicated.

It is simply the latest price per share multiplied by the total number of outstanding shares, cumulated over all companies listed on the particular exchange.

This entry records a country's net trade in goods and services, plus net earnings from rents, interest, profits, and dividends, and net transfer payments such as pension funds and worker remittances to and from the rest of the world during the period specified. This entry provides the total US dollar amount of merchandise exports on an f. This entry provides a rank ordering of trading partners starting with the most important; it sometimes includes the percent of total dollar value.

This entry provides a listing of the highest-valued exported products; it sometimes includes the percent of total dollar value. This entry provides the total US dollar amount of merchandise imports on a c. This entry provides a listing of the highest-valued imported products; it sometimes includes the percent of total dollar value. Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: This entry gives the dollar value for the stock of all financial assets that are available to the central monetary authority for use in meeting a country's balance of payments needs as of the end-date of the period specified.

This category includes not only foreign currency and gold, but also a country's holdings of Special Drawing Rights in the International Monetary Fund, and its reserve position in the Fund.

This entry gives the total public and private debt owed to nonresidents repayable in internationally accepted currencies, goods, or services. Stock of direct foreign investment - at home: This entry gives the cumulative US dollar value of all investments in the home country made directly by residents - primarily companies - of other countries as of the end of the time period indicated.

Direct investment excludes investment through purchase of shares. Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad: This entry gives the cumulative US dollar value of all investments in foreign countries made directly by residents - primarily companies - of the home country, as of the end of the time period indicated. This entry provides the average annual price of a country's monetary unit for the time period specified, expressed in units of local currency per US dollar, as determined by international market forces or by official fiat.

The International Organization for Standardization ISO alphabetic currency code for the national medium of exchange is presented in parenthesis. Closing daily exchange rates are not presented in The World Factbook, but are used to convert stock values - e.

This entry provides information on access to electricity. Electrification data — collected from industry reports, national surveys, and international sources — consists of four subfields. Population without electricity provides an estimate of the number of citizens that do not have access to electricity. This entry is the annual electricity generated expressed in kilowatt-hours. This entry consists of total electricity generated annually plus imports and minus exports, expressed in kilowatt-hours.

This entry is the total exported electricity in kilowatt-hours. This entry is the total imported electricity in kilowatt-hours. Electricity - installed generating capacity: This entry is the total capacity of currently installed generators, expressed in kilowatts kW , to produce electricity. A kilowatt kW generator will produce 10 kilowatt hours kWh of electricity, if it runs continuously for one hour.

Electricity - from fossil fuels: This entry measures the capacity of plants that generate electricity by burning fossil fuels such as coal, petroleum products, and natural gas , expressed as a share of the country's total generating capacity. Electricity - from nuclear fuels: This entry measures the capacity of plants that generate electricity through radioactive decay of nuclear fuel, expressed as a share of the country's total generating capacity.

Electricity - from hydroelectric plants: This entry measures the capacity of plants that generate electricity by water-driven turbines, expressed as a share of the country's total generating capacity. Electricity - from other renewable sources: This entry measures the capacity of plants that generate electricity by using renewable energy sources other than hydroelectric including, for example, wind, waves, solar, and geothermal , expressed as a share of the country's total generating capacity.

Crude oil - production: Crude oil - exports: Crude oil - imports: Crude oil - proved reserves: This entry is the stock of proved reserves of crude oil, in barrels bbl. Proved reserves are those quantities of petroleum which, by analysis of geological and engineering data, can be estimated with a high degree of confidence to be commercially recoverable from a given date forward, from known reservoirs and under current economic conditions.

Refined petroleum products - production: Refined petroleum products - consumption: Refined petroleum products - exports: Sophia church of Kiev , Ukraine dating from the 12th century.

They also appear as a repeating ornamental motif on a tomb in the Basilica of St. A ceiling painted in in the church of St Laurent in Grenoble has many swastikas. It can be visited today because the church became the archaeological museum of the city. A proposed direct link between it and a swastika floor mosaic in the Cathedral of Our Lady of Amiens , which was built on top of a pagan site at Amiens , France in the 13th century, is considered unlikely.

The stole worn by a priest in the painting of the Seven Sacraments by Rogier van der Weyden presents the swastika form simply as one way of depicting the cross. Swastikas also appear in art and architecture during the Renaissance and Baroque era. The fresco The School of Athens shows an ornament made out of swastikas, and the symbol can also be found on the facade of the Santa Maria della Salute , a Roman Catholic church and minor basilica located at Punta della Dogana in the Dorsoduro sestiere of the city of Venice.

In the Polish First Republic the symbol of the swastika was also popular with the nobility. According to chronicles, the Rus' prince Oleg , who in the 9th century attacked Constantinople , nailed his shield which had a large red swastika painted on it to the city's gates. Boreyko, Borzym, and Radziechowski from Ruthenia, also had swastikas as their coat of arms. The family reached its greatness in the 14th and 15th centuries and its crest can be seen in many heraldry books produced at that time.

The swastika was also a heraldic symbol, for example on the Boreyko coat of arms , used by noblemen in Poland and Ukraine. In the 19th century the swastika was one of the Russian empire's symbols; it was even placed in coins as a background to the Russian eagle. A swastika can be seen on stonework at Valle Crucis Abbey , near Llangollen. Because the outer lines point to the left instead of the swastika's right point ends, this is referred to as a sauwastika.

This pattern can be found in a Venetian palace that likely follows a Roman pattern, at Palazzo Roncale, Rovigo. A swastika composed of Hebrew letters as a mystical symbol from the Jewish Kabbalistic work "Parashat Eliezer". Swastikas on the vestments of the effigy of Bishop William Edington d. The swastika can be found on Ashanti gold weights and among adinkra symbols in West Africa. Carved fretwork forming a swastika in the window of a Lalibela rock-hewn church in Ethiopia.

In the Western world, the symbol experienced a resurgence following the archaeological work in the late 19th century of Heinrich Schliemann , who discovered the symbol in the site of ancient Troy and associated it with the ancient migrations of Proto-Indo-Europeans , whose proto-language was not coincidentally termed "Proto-Indo-Germanic" by German language historians. He connected it with similar shapes found on ancient pots in Germany, and theorized that the swastika was a "significant religious symbol of our remote ancestors", linking it to ancient Teutons , Greeks of the time of Homer and Indians of the Vedic era.

Schliemann's work soon became intertwined with the völkisch movements, which used the swastika as a symbol for the " Aryan race "—a concept that theorists such as Alfred Rosenberg equated with a Nordic master race originating in northern Europe. The swastika remains a core symbol of neo-Nazi groups. The Benedictine choir school at Lambach Abbey , Upper Austria, which Hitler attended for several months as a boy, had a swastika chiseled into the monastery portal and also the wall above the spring grotto in the courtyard by Their origin was the personal coat of arms of Abbot Theoderich Hagn of the monastery in Lambach, which bore a golden swastika with slanted points on a blue field.

In the s the Theosophical Society adopted a swastika as part of its seal, along with an Om , a hexagram or star of David , an Ankh and an Ouroboros. The current seal also includes the text "There is no religion higher than truth. The Danish brewery company Carlsberg Group used the swastika as a logo [] from the 19th Century until the middle of the s when it was discontinued because of association with the Nazi Party in neighbouring Germany.

The swastika carved on elephants at the entrance gates of the company's headquarters in Copenhagen in can still be seen today. In the fifties Heinrich Böll came across a van belonging to the company while he was staying in Ireland, leading to some awkward moments before he realized the company was older than Nazism and totally unrelated to it. The chimney of the boiler-house of the laundry still stands, but the laundry has been redeveloped.

In Finland the swastika "vääräpää" meaning crooked-head, and later "hakaristi", meaning hook-cross was often used in traditional folk art products, as a decoration or magical symbol on textiles and wood. The swastika was also used by the Finnish Air Force until , and is still used on air force flags. The tursaansydän is used by scouts in some instances [] and a student organization.

The Finnish Air Force used the swastika as an emblem, introduced in The type of swastika adopted by the air-force was the symbol of luck for the Swedish count Eric von Rosen , who donated one of its earliest aircraft; he later became a prominent figure in the Swedish nazi-movement. The swastika was also used by the women's paramilitary organization Lotta Svärd , which was banned in in accordance with the Moscow Armistice between Finland and the allied Soviet Union and Britain.

According to the protocol, the president shall wear the Grand Cross of the White Rose with collar on formal occasions. The original design of the collar, decorated with 9 swastikas, dates from , and was designed by the artist Akseli Gallen-Kallela.

The Grand Cross with the swastika collar has been awarded 41 times to foreign heads of state. To avoid misunderstandings, the swastika decorations were replaced by fir crosses at the decision of president Urho Kekkonen in after it became known that the President of France Charles De Gaulle was uncomfortable with the swastika collar.

Also a design by Gallen-Kallela from , the Cross of Liberty has a swastika pattern in its arms. The Cross of Liberty is depicted in the upper left corner of the standard of the President of Finland. In December , a silver replica of the World War II period Finnish air defence's relief ring decorated with a swastika became available as a part of a charity campaign. The original war time idea was that the public swap their precious metal rings for the State air defence's relief ring, made of iron.

Earlier versions pointed counter-clockwise, while later versions pointed clock-wise and eliminated the white background. As in Latvia, the symbol is a traditional Baltic ornament, [] [] found on relics dating from at least the 13th century. The traditional symbols of the Podhale Rifles include the edelweiss flower and the Mountain Cross, a swastika symbol popular in folk culture of the Polish mountainous regions. The units of Podhale Rifles, both historical and modern, are notable for their high morale and distinctive uniforms.

The logo was replaced in , when Adolf Hitler came to power in Germany. During the early s, the swastika was used as a symbol of electric power, perhaps because it resembled a waterwheel or turbine.

On maps of the period, the sites of hydroelectric power stations were marked with swastikas. Swastikas adorn its wrought iron gates. The architects knew the swastika as a symbol of electricity and were probably not yet aware that it had been usurped by the German Nazi party and would soon become the foremost symbol of the German Reich.

The fact that these gates survived the cleanup after the German occupation of Norway during WW II is a testimony to the innocence and good faith of the power plant and its architects. The swastika motif is found in some traditional Native American art and iconography. Historically, the design has been found in excavations of Mississippian -era sites in the Ohio and Mississippi River valleys, and on objects associated with the Southeastern Ceremonial Complex S.

It is also widely used by a number of southwestern tribes, most notably the Navajo , and plains nations such as the Dakota. Among various tribes, the swastika carries different meanings. The Passamaquoddy Native American tribe, now located in the state of Maine and in Canada , used an elongated swastika on their war canoes in the American colonial period as well as later. Before the s, the symbol for the 45th Infantry Division of the United States Army was a red diamond with a yellow swastika, a tribute to the large Native American population in the southwestern United States.

A swastika shape is a symbol in the culture of the Kuna people of Kuna Yala , Panama. In Kuna tradition it symbolizes the octopus that created the world, its tentacles pointing to the four cardinal points. In February the Kuna revolted vigorously against Panamanian suppression of their culture, and in they assumed autonomy. The flag they adopted at that time is based on the swastika shape, and remains the official flag of Kuna Yala. A number of variations on the flag have been used over the years: The town of Swastika, Ontario, Canada is named after the symbol.

From to , the K-R-I-T automobile, manufactured in Detroit, Michigan, used a right-facing swastika as their trademark. Chief William Neptune of the Passamaquoddy , wearing a headdress and outfit adorned with swastikas.

Chilocco Indian Agricultural School basketball team in Fernie Swastikas women's hockey team, The Buffum tool company of Louisiana used the swastika as its trademark. It went out of business in the s. The swastika was widely used in Europe at the start of the 20th century. It symbolized many things to the Europeans, with the most common symbolism being of good luck and auspiciousness.

This insignia was used on the party's flag, badge, and armband. In his work Mein Kampf , Adolf Hitler writes that: After long trials I also found a definite proportion between the size of the flag and the size of the white disk, as well as the shape and thickness of the swastika.

When Hitler created a flag for the Nazi Party, he sought to incorporate both the swastika and "those revered colors expressive of our homage to the glorious past and which once brought so much honor to the German nation. In red, we see the social idea of the movement; in white, the nationalistic idea; in the swastika, the mission of the struggle for the victory of the Aryan man, and, by the same token, the victory of the idea of creative work.

The swastika was also understood as "the symbol of the creating, effecting life" das Symbol des schaffenden, wirkenden Lebens and as "race emblem of Germanism" Rasseabzeichen des Germanentums. The use of the swastika was incorporated by Nazi theorists with their conjecture of Aryan cultural descent of the German people. The fascination of the German people with Aryanism arose when artifacts with swastikas on them were found near the Trojan city of Troy by Heinrich Schliemann.

The Nazi party was looking for the symbol that would preferably catch the attention of all of Germany and the swastika had that potential. It became a symbol to unify the German people, to a conjecture about their ancestors, Aryan identity and nationalistic pride. It also allowed the Nazi party to establish their anti-Semitic views, as well as terrify Jews and the enemies of the Nazi state.

The concept of racial hygiene was an ideology central to Nazism, though it is scientific racism. Thus, they saw fit to co-opt the sign as a symbol of the Aryan master race. The use of the swastika as a symbol of the Aryan race dates back to writings of Emile Burnouf. Following many other writers, the German nationalist poet Guido von List believed it was a uniquely Aryan symbol.

Before the Nazis, the swastika was already in use as a symbol of German völkisch nationalist movements Völkische Bewegung. An adaption of the NSDAP flag — with the swastika slightly offset from center — was adopted as the sole national flag of Germany on 15 September The swastika was used for badges and flags throughout Nazi Germany , particularly for government and military organizations, but also for "popular" organizations such as the Reichsbund Deutsche Jägerschaft German Hunting Society.

Ralf Stelter notes that the swastika flag used on land had a right-facing swastika on both sides, while the ensign naval flag had it printed through so that a left-facing swastika would be seen when looking at the ensign with the flagpole to the right.

During World War II it was common to use small swastikas to mark air-to-air victories on the sides of Allied aircraft, and at least one British fighter pilot inscribed a swastika in his logbook for each German plane he shot down. Because of its use by Nazi Germany, the swastika since the s has been largely associated with Nazism. In the aftermath of World War II it has been considered a symbol of hate in the West, [] or alternatively of white supremacy in many Western countries.

As a result, all of its use, or its use as a Nazi or hate symbol, is prohibited in some countries, including Germany. Because of the stigma attached to the symbol, many buildings that have used the symbol as decoration have had the symbol removed.

Black case, the highest courts have ruled that the local governments can prohibit the use of swastika along with other symbols such as cross burning, if the intent of the use is to intimidate others.

The German and Austrian postwar criminal code makes the public showing of the Hakenkreuz the swastika , the sig rune , the Celtic cross specifically the variations used by white power activists , the wolfsangel , the odal rune and the Totenkopf skull illegal, except for scholarly reasons and, in the case of the odal rune, as the insignia of the rank of sergeant major, Hauptfeldwebel , [] in the modern German Bundeswehr.

It is also censored from the reprints of s railway timetables published by the Reichsbahn. The eagle remains [ where? The swastikas on Hindu, Buddhist, and Jain temples are exempt, as religious symbols cannot be banned in Germany.

The German fashion company Esprit Holdings was investigated for using traditional British-made folded leather buttons after complaints that they resembled swastikas. In response, Esprit Holdings destroyed two hundred thousand catalogues. A controversy was stirred by the decision of several police departments to begin inquiries against anti-fascists.

In the Stade police department started an inquiry against anti-fascist youths using a placard depicting a person dumping a swastika into a trashcan. The placard was displayed in opposition to the campaign of right-wing nationalist parties for local elections. On Friday, 17 March , a member of the Bundestag , Claudia Roth reported herself to the German police for displaying a crossed-out swastika in multiple demonstrations against Neo-Nazis , and subsequently got the Bundestag to suspend her immunity from prosecution.

She intended to show the absurdity of charging anti-fascists with using fascist symbols: On August 9, , Germany lifted the ban on the usage of swastikas and other Nazi symbols in video games. The European Union's Executive Commission proposed a European Union-wide anti-racism law in , but European Union states failed to agree on the balance between prohibiting racism and freedom of expression.

In early , while Germany held the European Union presidency, Berlin proposed that the European Union should follow German Criminal Law and criminalize the denial of the Holocaust and the display of Nazi symbols including the swastika, which is based on the Ban on the Symbols of Unconstitutional Organizations Act. This led to an opposition campaign by Hindu groups across Europe against a ban on the swastika. They pointed out that the swastika has been around for 5, years as a symbol of peace.

As the public display of Nazi -era German flags or any other flags is protected by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution , which guarantees the right to freedom of speech , [] the Nazi Reichskriegsflagge has also been seen on display at white supremacist "events" within United States borders.

As with many neo-Nazi groups across the world, the swastika was also a part of the American Nazi Party 's flag before its first dissolution in — its "re-use" was initiated by successor organizations in , without the publicity Rockwell's original organization possessed.

The symbol was originally chosen by the initial organization's founder, George L. The swastika, in various iconographic forms, is one of the hate symbols identified in use as graffiti in the schools of the United States, and is a part of the US Department of Education's emergency school-wide response trigger.

In , Microsoft officially spoke out against use of the swastika by players of the first-person shooter Call of Duty: In Black Ops , players are allowed to customize their name tags to represent, essentially, whatever they want. The swastika can be created and used, but Stephen Toulouse , director of Xbox Live policy and enforcement, stated that players with the symbol on their name tag will be banned if someone reports as inappropriate from Xbox Live.

The swastika has been replaced by a stylized Greek Cross. Nazi imagery was adapted and incorporated into the sci-fi movie 2BR02B: To Be or Naught to Be. Its inclusion was to subliminally draw parallels between the movie's Federal Bureau of Termination and Nazi Germany, and also refer to Kurt Vonnegut 's experiences as a POW and the influence World War II played in his imagining of a population-controlled future where authorities use gas chambers to terminate people.

The Federal Bureau of Termination logo appears as a white geometric design with a black outline, centered on vertical banners, in reference to the Third Reich banners.

These banners were initially red, until the crew felt the allusion was too strong. The movie's hospital was envisaged as the Bureau's branch that controlled birth, and their red cross was given 'wings' to transform it into a swastika, and link it to the Bureau's logo. In , authorities in Tajikistan called for the widespread adoption of the swastika as a national symbol. President Emomali Rahmonov declared the swastika an Aryan symbol, and "the year of Aryan culture," which would be a time to "study and popularize Aryan contributions to the history of the world civilization, raise a new generation of Tajiks with the spirit of national self-determination, and develop deeper ties with other ethnicities and cultures.

In East Asia, the swastika is prevalent in Buddhist monasteries and communities. It is commonly found in Buddhist temples, religious artefacts, texts related to Buddhism and schools founded by Buddhist religious groups. It also appears as a design or motif singularly or woven into a pattern on textiles, architecture and various decorative objects as a symbol of luck and good fortune. The icon is also found as a sacred symbol in the Bon tradition, but in the left facing mode.

Many Chinese religions make use of the swastika symbol, including Guiyidao and Shanrendao. All of them show the swastika in their logos. Among the predominantly Hindu population of Bali , in Indonesia , the swastika is common in temples, homes and public spaces. Similarly, the swastika is a common icon associated with Buddha's footprints in Theravada Buddhist communities of Myanmar, Thailand and Cambodia.

In Japan, the swastika is also used as a map symbol and is designated by the Survey Act and related Japanese governmental rules to denote a Buddhist temple. The city of Hirosaki in Aomori Prefecture designates this symbol as its official flag, which stemmed from its use in the emblem of the Tsugaru clan , the lords of Hirosaki Domain during the Edo period.

In India, Nepal and Sri Lanka, the swastika is common. Temples, businesses and other organisations, such as the Buddhist libraries, Ahmedabad Stock Exchange and the Nepal Chamber of Commerce, [] use the swastika in reliefs or logos.

The swastika remains prominent in Hindu ceremonies such as weddings. The left facing sauwastika symbol is found in tantric rituals. Musaeus College in Colombo, Sri Lanka , a Buddhist girls' school, has a left facing swastika in their school logo. In India, swastik and swastika, with their spelling variants, are first names for males and females respectively, for instance with Swastika Mukherjee.

The Seal of Bihar contains two swastikas. Since the end of the 20th century, and through the early 21st century, confusion and controversy has occurred when consumer goods bearing the traditional Jain, Buddhist, or Hindu symbols have been exported to the West, notably to North America and Europe, and have been interpreted by consumers as bearing a Nazi symbol.

This has resulted in several such products having been boycotted or pulled from shelves. The boy's parents misinterpreted the symbol as the right-facing Nazi swastika and filed a complaint to the manufacturer.

Nintendo of America announced that the cards would be discontinued, explaining that what was acceptable in one culture was not necessarily so in another; their action was welcomed by the Anti-Defamation League who recognised that there was no intention to offend, but said that international commerce meant that, "Isolating [the Swastika] in Asia would just create more problems.

In , Christmas crackers containing plastic toy red pandas sporting swastikas were pulled from shelves after complaints from consumers in Canada. The manufacturer, based in China, said the symbol was presented in a traditional sense and not as a reference to the Nazis, and apologized to the customers for the cross-cultural mixup.

Besides the use as a religious symbol in Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism, which can be traced to pre-modern traditions, the swastika is also used by a number of new religious movements established in the modern period. Edit Read in another language Swastika. For other uses, see Swastika disambiguation. Hakenkreuz , angled cross Winkelkreuz or crooked cross Krummkreuz. A swastika is typical in Hindu temples. Goa Lawah Hindu temple entrance in Bali , Indonesia. A Hindu temple in Rajasthan , India.

Swastika Germanic Iron Age. Hands of Svarog Polish: Ancient Roman mosaics of La Olmeda , Spain. Svastika on a Roman mosaic in Veli Brijun , Croatia. Ashanti weight in Africa.

Western use of the swastika in the early 20th century. The aircraft roundel and insignia of the Finnish Air force from — The flag of the Finnish Air Force Academy. The Lotta Svärd emblem designed by Eric Wasström in Old and new versions of the 45th Infantry Division. The flag of the Nazi Party.

The adoption of the swastika by the Nazis and by neo-Nazis is the most recognizable modern use of the symbol in the west. Divisional insignia of Asia Edit Central Asia Edit In , authorities in Tajikistan called for the widespread adoption of the swastika as a national symbol.

Swastika on a temple in Korea left , in Taiwan right. The A to Z of Hinduism. The Symbolism of the Stupa. United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. Intention to intimidate, political ideology, and group association". Law and Human Behavior. Retrieved 8 June A Media Literacy Approach. National University of Singapore Press. Cambridge University Press — via Google Books. Retrieved 26 April Myths and Symbols in Indian Art and Civilization. Allchin; George Erdosy The Emergence of Cities and States.

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