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January 18th, 2012
10:00 PM ET

Jewish groups split over reprinting of 'Mein Kampf' excerpts in Germany

By Christopher Cottrell, CNN

BERLIN (CNN) -Jewish groups in Germany and abroad are divided about a British publishing house's intentions to print excerpts of Adolf Hitler's infamous manifesto "Mein Kampf."

Slated to hit the shelves in Germany January 26, it will be the first time that any parts of the book have been reprinted in a newspaper or magazine in that country since the end of World War II.

Alexander Luckow, an adviser to British publisher Peter McGee - the man behind the magazine that will print the excerpts - said the former German dictator's writings would appear directly adjacent to commentaries from renowned historians to ensure that the passages are viewed in context.

"We're convinced that what we're doing is protected under citation laws," Luckow told CNN. "These laws permit citation of 'Mein Kampf,' especially when it is accompanied by historical commentary like we're doing."

Luckow said the weekly Zeitungszeugen magazine - a play on the German words for newspaper and witness - plans to publish three 15-page extracts as supplemental inserts.

According to Israel's Jerusalem Post, the president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, Dieter Graumann, said Tuesday it was preferable for Germans to read annotated excerpts of Hitler's writings in an academic context rather than accessing the unfiltered material online.

"I can truly do without the publication of this hate-filled book that is saturated with anti-Semitism to the core," Graumann told the paper. "(But) if one must actually read it, then it's better in the framework of a critical commentary."

While some historians expressed few qualms with the announcement that parts of the book would be reprinted in Germany, a group representing Holocaust survivors and their families is questioning the value of publishing the excerpts.

"We want to make clear that there is nothing altruistic in the motivation of this publisher," said Elan Steinberg, vice president of the American Gathering of Holocaust Survivors and Their Descendents. "He's out to make a profit."

"There is a reason that the public display of the swastika is illegal in Germany," Steinberg added. "For these same historic and moral reasons, it is offensive to think that kiosks in Berlin will again - 70 years after the end of that evil regime - be selling Hitler's 'Mein Kampf.'"

Hitler wrote the book from prison after his failed Beer Hall Putsch of 1923, outlining his anti-Semitic ideology.

Contrary to popular belief, there is no law in Germany forbidding the publishing of "Mein Kampf," but the Bavarian state government - which owns the publishing copyright - has always blocked reprints.

These rights, however, are set to expire in 2015, which will then allow anyone to publish the entire volume or excerpts. The Institute for Contemporary History in Munich is already preparing a scholarly edition of the book set to come out that year, according to Dr. Edith Raim, who is working on the project.

"There's no reason to prolong the inevitable," Luckow said of McGee's decision to publish the excerpts this month.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Germany • Judaism

soundoff (410 Responses)
  1. F

    Anyone has the right to read Hilter's book.

    January 19, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
  2. John

    Jews have s*x thru a hole on sheet lol.... nasty

    January 19, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • Bob

      Hahahahaha

      January 19, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
  3. John

    Adolf Hitler was the best leader ever in history... Ich liebe Hitler!

    January 19, 2012 at 1:27 pm |
  4. Lardeau

    Did Hitler not solve the same problem the world has to-day ? In one fell swoop !!!!!!!!!!!! ALL DEBTS ARE HEREBY CANCELLED !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And he threw out the bankers. This is the only way this debt monster can be dealt with.

    January 19, 2012 at 1:24 pm |
    • Absolutionis

      Go away, troll.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
    • Bob

      I can see Hitler's legacy of genocide and hate is still with you. yeah, real nice. Go to hell you bigot!

      January 19, 2012 at 1:27 pm |
  5. Absolutionis

    I understand that some groups tend to deny that history ever occurred, but silencing the printing of this book by pretending it never existed is like denying the Holocaust.

    January 19, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
  6. Don't forget the Armenian, Assyrian & Greek holocaust!!!!!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M4Z865lsPjo

    January 19, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
    • Absolutionis

      No, no, no. Germany committed the Holocaust on Gypsies, Elderly, Handicapped, and especially Jews.
      This Armenian thing is ancient news and has nothing to do with Hilter. Do some research.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
  7. Mahmud

    Insallah May Allah kill all Jews

    January 19, 2012 at 1:21 pm |
    • AMAU

      You're Allah will Fallah (fall and be eradicated).

      January 19, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
    • Bob

      oh no.. here we go again... got the jihadist spouting hate...just what we need another terrorist..

      January 19, 2012 at 1:24 pm |
    • Steve

      you are a total piece of garbage....you can say that b.s. in a blog but i am sure you are like all of you ignorant fools a coward as well ..i hope you meet your 72 ugly virgins a.s.a.p

      January 19, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
  8. Bob

    Hey Kim, i'm white and non jew but i'll hold your hand..

    January 19, 2012 at 1:19 pm |
  9. Armenian

    Why ignore the holocaust against the Armenians, Assyrians and Greeks in WWI and only focus on the European one? Ridiculous!

    January 19, 2012 at 1:18 pm |
    • Because

      ...the Armenian holocaust is a myth.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
    • Mahmud

      No it is not a myth. There are proof of it happened. The Jewish one is a myth

      January 19, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
    • AWOL Dubya

      The Armenian genocide was 'inspiration' for Hitler. "Who today remembers the Armenians"?, said the coprophile Hitler. The Turks (gee! – oddly enough), to this day, deny that the Armenian genocide ever took place. And to those who would deny the Holocaust ever happened – well, you can't fix stupid.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
  10. TRANSPARENCY

    So let them print it! Its important for the world and future generations to know world history and be knowledgeable of the kinds of evil minds that once ruled our planet. There's a saying those who ignore history are bound to repeat it. So let then print it with the hopes that future generations would take a stand against people perpetrating these kinds of evil. These writings are not much different from the views of the GOP and the Tea Party that's spreading their bigotry and hate and dividing America. I wish all of them were with Hitler right now.

    January 19, 2012 at 1:18 pm |
    • scott

      stupid

      January 19, 2012 at 1:24 pm |
    • AMAU

      Unfortunately, it breeds anti-semitism.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
    • Bertha

      Transparency: You wish all of them were with Hitler right now?? Are you serious? That is just as hateful and biogoted as Hitler himself! Wanting harm done to those that have differnt ideas than you. What a hypocrite!

      January 19, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
  11. Kim

    Jews are racist. I'm black and a co-worker who was Jewish did not want to hold my hand because I was not white 🙁

    January 19, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
    • Tired of Jew Whining

      Jews are racist. In fact some of the worst ones are Jews.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:21 pm |
    • Ginger

      Whoa! So one coworker did not want to hold your hand so that means all Jewish people dislike all black people?

      January 19, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
    • DZA

      Kim – It wasn't because you were black... It was because you were a co-worker, and that is inappropriate behaviour in the workplace.

      Tired – Really? I'm thinking you're trolling just to get people riled up. You can't be that out of touch with reality and still function in any capacity in today's society...

      January 19, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
    • Jon

      So one person ignorant actions reflect an entire race of people. So I then assume by your statement that you are a middle school drop out, who is unmarried mother of 5 kids living below the poverty line collecting welfare and food stamps!!! MORON

      January 19, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
    • Ginger

      Furthermore, ALL humans, no matter what race, have the capability to be racist at some level. That doesn't mean we are all racist. It's an individual behavior that is learned, it is not genetic.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
    • Maximus Erectus

      Kim, I will hold your hand, kiss you, hump you in the buttHole, spew hot cheddar all over your face, pee in your mouth...whatever ya like.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • spencer stott

      "Jews are racist"? Really? Because one racist jew wouldnt hold your hand ALL JEWS are racist? I know of a number of racist blacks...are all blacks racist then? Not cool, kimmy.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
  12. Bob

    Ok, granted this is a book Hitler wrote that was and still is a reprehensible but given the historical context surrounding it, should still be published. Like the wise ones say, if we forget history we are doomed to repeat it.

    January 19, 2012 at 1:16 pm |
  13. NY Jew

    ATHEISM IS NOT HEALTHY FOR OUR CHILDREN AND LIVING THINGS. They will NOT go to heaven!!

    January 19, 2012 at 1:14 pm |
    • Tired of Jew Whining

      Your heaven is my hell.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
    • joe

      YEAH! We should teach our children intolerance of others and teach them to hate because their parents didn't force them to believe the same things they were forced to adopt!

      January 19, 2012 at 1:27 pm |
  14. Tired of Jew Whining

    How is it that the holocaust seems to always refer to jews only and exclude all the other 5 milliion "undesireables" that met the same fate? Gays, artists, gysies et al. You hear very little if at all about them; but jews want to keep this alive as if they were the only ones who suffered.

    January 19, 2012 at 1:14 pm |
    • NY Jew

      Because we control the world and media 🙂 Proud!

      January 19, 2012 at 1:15 pm |
    • AMAU

      Jews were specifically targeted and the largest group and deserve the most intention. German's were not out to eradicate gypsies, per se (there were no Juden Rein posters for Gypsies), other than the fact that gypsies are not German supermists. Also, are you tired of American's complaining about 9/11? Also, please tell me are you a gypsy?

      January 19, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • Tired of Mindless Racism

      Because over 6 Million Jews were killed in it. All the other races they slaughtered combined fell 1 million short of the number of Jews they killed. Should it be mentioned more that other races were killed, absolutely. That doesn't get enough coverage. The reason that the fate of the Jews in the Holocaust gets the most coverage is because they were far and away the most persecuted race in the Holocaust.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:52 pm |
  15. Jon

    What part of "NEVER AGAIN" do you Jew hating idiots not understand!!! In the past it was easy for you weak, pathetic, people to persecute and slaughter Jews!!! Jews prior to World War 2 did nothing to stop it from happening!!! However, since World War 2, the Jews additude toward you weak, pathetic people has changed!!! The Jews fight back with one thought running through there head, "if I am going down, I will take out as many of you Jew hating people as I possibly can before you take me down!!! Remember that before you shoot your mouths off!!!

    January 19, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
    • Tired of Jew Whining

      Cry me a river.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:16 pm |
    • AWOL Dubya

      It pretty much explains Israel's truculence.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
    • Peacefrog

      Hmm....you sound just like a Nazi.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
    • Jon

      @Tired, you must have been dropped on your head as an infant to be that stupid!!!
      @Peace, sound like a Nazi? No not a Nazi, just tellign it like it really is and not how racist portray it!!!

      January 19, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
  16. MashaSobaka

    European Jews of all people should remember the consequences of ignoring the past. Publishing this book isn't exactly an endorsement of what is written on its pages. Knowledge is power, even when it's not exactly tasty going down. They need to remind themselves of that and stop complaining.

    January 19, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
  17. Daniel

    This 2 pages have been the most idiotic thing iv seen in a while, Christian are evil they belive in something and we must bash them! He is atheist we must bash him for not beliving in our god.

    I was born and rasied in pourtugal and from a strong catholic famliy, from what i see in most religiose debates end up with both partys that make them selves both look like fools. Only in North north america dose this bashing happen no were eles in the world dose it happen. Europeans are the only true Athiest and Chatolic/christians. You were all a mistake, and you need to get over it.

    I wana read this book and i could care less what religion your from or what background i will treat you the way i treat my slef, Yes that saying is in the bible. But that has nothing to do with anything, if i were to be athiest i would still follow that saying, its universal.

    And also get off the pope he has other thing to worrie about, that hat he wears is really heveay and he needs some support.

    January 19, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
    • shouldknowbetter

      Hey Daniel – how is it that you lived in Portugal, without learning how to SPELL IT. Just shut up NOW !!! We won't listen to anymore out of YOU!!!

      January 19, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
  18. Steve

    My kids just came back home and were taught about the holocaust, how Jews were treated bad etc. OMG they learn about it 50 times a year.... public schools needs to STOP teaching it to our children, especially at 3rd grade. SHAME!

    January 19, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
    • Bill

      I disagree with you. I learned about WWII and the Holocaust in the 2nd grade. It wasn't graphic, but it simply talked about some of the horrors of that war. We try to teach our children history and you can't gloss over the bad parts or they are going to grow up thinking that everything that is done in the world is positive. They have to exposed to the negative when they are young. You need to be sensative about it, but it does need to be done.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
    • AWOL Dubya

      Yeah, why bother teaching kids about tolerance and persecution. Better to indoctrinate them with blind hate. And people wonder why there's an epidemic of bullying in this country. "50 times a year"? – that's quite the exaggeration. Then again, I suppose you prefer they grow up ignorant and stupid. After all, it seemed to work out just fine for you.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
    • AMAU

      Unfortunately, your kids parents undermine everything the school has taught them, which is why they must reiterate it several times.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:36 pm |
  19. Steve

    You know why many companies made it illegal to wish people and mention "Christmas"? Because Jewish community were arguing and threatened to sue them if the did not switch to "Holidays" instead. No Jews = Merry Christmas. Hanukkah = Anti-Christmas

    January 19, 2012 at 1:08 pm |
    • EuphoriCrest

      No, We atheists get the credit for that one.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
    • Daniel

      That a perrfect example of todays population.

      I was once in a store getting some food, when the chashier said Merry christmass, witch in turn was a suprise because its usally Happy holiday. Therfore i returned the kind jesture, but for some odd resone the women behind me barked at us, " Im not christian you can't say that!" I jently turned to her and told her to be quite plz.

      While i was making way to my car, she aproched me again and scolded me from the "Merry Christmass" she started rambling on how we shoudent be saying it and should only be saying "Happy holidays" i turned to her and said why must i change me way because others do not share the same as mine? I wished her a merry Christmass and Fliped her off while a drove away.

      She was jewish, the Clerk told me 3 weeks later.

      I in no way im bashing the Jew or anyone eles, im just appaled for her out burts.

      (English is not my native language pardon my speeling)

      January 19, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
    • AMAU

      Companies cannot make anything illegal (they have no legislative authority). They can implement a corporate policy to be mindful and sensitive to other's religions (which you don't seem to be the slightest). As a Jew, I couldn't care less if people call their parties Christmas parties. You obviously like to stereotype and project your animosity to all. You are a poor soul.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:33 pm |
    • Anatomically Bombed

      "why must i change me way because others do not share the same as mine?" Good point. Next time I will stick to my beliefs and wish people a Merry Moronicus and ask people why they celebrate Moronicus, which they obviously do since only a moron would celebrate a God's "birthday" even while they claim he has always existed and had no begining, and do it on an opposing God's holy day while stealing the other God's traditions and pagentry that include lying to your children, going into even more debt to afford the expected gifts given more because you have to not because you want to, which in turn helps mold your children into greedy, selfish parasites that don't know how to appreciate gifts given from the heart. Morons.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
  20. La

    Why do Jews drive BMW/Mercedez Benz, why drive on Interstate highways? Those were founded by the Nazis.. shame on them!

    January 19, 2012 at 1:07 pm |
    • Bill

      Mecedes Benz was founded during the Imperium before World War I. BMW was founded in 1917.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:19 pm |
    • AMAU

      Actually Mercediz was founded by a Jew and was confiscated during the Holocaust. Read the history.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • TomJeff

      Ok, then Volkswagons. VW was given its name by the Fuhrer himself!

      Krups, the coffee machine people, made the ovens in the camps.

      January 19, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • Gerry

      They are better cars than our American cars. We put a huge gas guzzler V8 in everything, and then make sure it doesn't get no more than 17 miles per gallon, and then we hike up the price around 55 grand and install plastic dash boards that crack after 4 years. You can buy a pre-owned certified BMW, Mercedes, Audi, or VW for about 25 grand, and you'll get about 10,000 miles per each oil change or better, and you'll also get about 30-45 miles per gallon.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:03 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.