This Italian government official insists his fascist birthday cake was totally okay

This image was removed due to legal reasons.

An Italian government official is being criticized by local media for photos of his birthday cake. The cake looks like it's made from layers of delicious pastry, with white sugary icing, and features two fascist symbols quite prominently. Here's a picture of the cake being shared on Italian Twitter:


The two lightning bolt looking symbols are drawn from the Nazi paramilitary force, the SS, and the red axe symbol is a fasces, the insignia that was used by Italian dictator Benito Mussolini's fascist party. The birthday boy, Massimo Giorgetti, is a government official for the northern Italian region of Veneto. The Guardian reports that he didn't seem to see the problem with a government official displaying fascist and Nazi symbols. He was standing by his cake in interviews after the photo went public, according to the newspaper:

“I am not resigning and I am not ashamed of the fascist symbol,” Massimo Giorgetti told the radio show La Zanzara. The Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi’s “exultation” of Raúl Castro in Cuba was worse, he added.

He then took to Facebook to defend his cake in more detail, saying it was "a playful gesture by old comrades and friends at a private party," and adding that he apologized if the cake had offended anyone, but that he doesn't think it should eclipse his many years of service to the community:

Giorgetti ended the post by announcing he's going off on vacation to the Red Sea.