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WASHINGTON -- Four members of the famed Navajo Nation Code Talkers were honored at a Washington Redskins game.

The men's appearance at Monday night's game against the San Francisco 49ers came during the Redskins' military appreciation night. But it's also fueling the debate over the team's mascot, which has been criticized as racist and offensive.

The crowd cheered as Peter MacDonald Sr., George Willie Sr., George James Sr. and Roy Hawthorne stepped onto the field during the first quarter.

A video shown overhead paid tribute to the Code Talkers, who used their native language to confound the Japanese during World War II. The video ends with MacDonald saying, ``Hail to the Redskins. Go, Redskins. Let's do it.''

The Redskins declined to make the Code Talkers available for interviews at the game, and attempts to reach them Tuesday were unsuccessful.

Associated Press,

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