There's no easy way to lead into this so we'll just come right out with it - according to The Sun one can now obtain knitting patterns to create one's very own cuddly Hitler.
Everyone's favourite inflammatory informo-rag has a lovely picture of the "grotesque" yarn-based Fuhrer, who looks snug and stylish in his army-green cardi. In fact, the 20th century's most hated figure looks a little on the camp side in this incarnation, with distinctly curvy hips and a slightly floppy Nazi salute. (We find him kind of adorable, actually. Is that so wrong?)
The Sun insists that the dictator pattern, together with instructions for making a snuggly Saddam and a plush Pol Pot, is included in the new book of guerrilla-knitstress Rachael Matthews. Sadly there's no mention of 'Knitler' on her Cast Off knitting group site, nor on her Prick Your Finger blog or main site for her shop in London's Bethnal Green. However, there are plenty other naughty knitty kits to be found in her shop including cigarettes, a grenade and um, woolly willies.
A spokesman for the Jewish Network is quoted in The Sun as saying, rather mildly: “You would hope people would have more sense than to take a cuddly Hitler into work.” Well, you would.
Matthews' existing book Hookerama (step away from the quip, please) includes patterns for flip-top mittens and a daisy fascinator as well as a fig-leaf bikini, but no historical hate figures. We'll keep you posted.
Knitlergate is the latest controversy to hit knitting, following the shocking Doctor Who Adipose scandal. ®
If you're thinking about invoking the tedious IT-angle quibble, you can put a sock in it.