Microsoft has gone to extraordinary lengths to remove a swastika symbol that is in a font they released - in case it offends someone. (See extended entry)
Now Buddhists still use it to symbolise the feet or footprints of the Buddha. The symbol, which was also used widely in the ancient world including Mesopotamia, Scandinavia, India and the Americas, became common in China and Japan with the spread of Buddhism.
And if you were writing about the Nazi's it might come in useful.
And of course the much maligned Kipling used it:
His use was completley unrelated to Nazism, and he ordered its removal as Adolf rose to power.
So the fear of offending causes madness yet again. - The only upside I can see is that the anti-Bush brigade will find it a tad harder to produce their Bush is a Nazi posters!.
Dec. 12, 2003
Microsoft has learned of a mistake in the Bookshelf Symbol 7 font included in the Microsoft Office System client applications. Due to an unintentional oversight, we failed to identify, prior to the release, the presence of two swastikas within the font. We apologize for this and for any offense caused. Microsoft is taking immediate measures to remedy the issue for all customers.
Microsoft has released a utility today for worldwide download that removes the font.
Again, we apologize to those who have been offended or upset. We continue to work to improve our processes in order to prevent this type of error in the future.
Senior Vice President, Microsoft Office