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. MartinT

    Sorry for hurting any theists... but I'm a troll. I secretly believe in Christ but not allowed to admitt it from my mommy and daddy

    January 19, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
  2. Observer

    MartinT is trolling and that's an embarrassment to all of us. Don't feed trolls.

    January 19, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
    • MartinT

      I can't say I've ever been called a "troll" for telling the truth. I assure you, I seek no "feeding" from the likes of you. Thank you.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:42 pm |
    • MartinT

      So, defending my right to be an atheist is trolling? Speaking against what I see as the fundamental dividing issues of our time, is trolling? I suspect that YOU, my friend, are just offended because I do not hold your particular world view, and as such you have the audacity to refer to me as a "troll." I say it here as I have said it elsewhere, if you do not agree with me, say so, if I offend you, skip over me, if you wish to debate something, feel free... if you don't like me, that is YOUR problem not mine. Peace.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
    • Observer2

      He's not as bad as that. Does try to say something. Usually off topic and loose on facts, but what's strange about that? The little ad hominem zingers are typical and typically harmless.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
  3. Silvia

    I was Jew who converted to Christianity in 2008. There's nothing better than believe in Jesus Christ, a wonderful historic leader for taugh nothing but love and good stuff. Amazing person who everybody should learn from. Being Christian is the greatest gift in this world. I'm proud believer in Christ.

    January 19, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
    • MartinT

      Yes, NOTHING like believing in the GREATEST MYTH EVER! Your Jesus Christ.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
  4. Chris

    Hitler, Stalin, Mao and all other mass murder leaders were all sick atheists!! Yes, Hitler was born Christian, but later rejected his faith. Shame those who call themselves atheists.... yuck

    January 19, 2012 at 3:26 pm |
    • MartinT

      @Chris, you do realize that even if they were atheists, they did not kill anyone in the name of atheism, unlike the many Christians and Muslims, and yes Jews, who have Killed in the Name of their God. I am an atheist and I would be wiling to bet I am more educated and far more philanthropic than you will ever be.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Was a pernicious lie!!
      "We have undertaken the fight against the atheistic movement, and that not merely with a few theoretical declarations: we have stamped it out".
      The Speeches of Adolf Hitler, April 1922-August 1939, Vol. 1 of 2, Oxford University Press, 1942

      "I am now as before a Catholic and will always remain so."
      – Adolf Hitler, to General Gerhard Engel, 1941

      "The fact that the Catholic Church has come to an agreement with Fascist Italy ...proves beyond doubt that the Fascist world of ideas is closer to Christianity than those of Jewish liberalism or even atheistic Marxism..."
      – Adolf Hitler in an article in the Völkischer Beobachter, February 29, 1929, on the new Lateran Treaty between Mussolini's fascist government and the Vatican

      The Third Reich was not an atheistic regime.
      Nazi uniform belt buckles were emblazoned with the phrase "Gott mit uns" – God is With Us.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
    • derp

      “We were convinced that the people needs and requires this faith. We have therefore undertaken the fight against the atheistic movement, and that not merely with a few theoretical declarations: we have stamped it out.”

      "My feelings as a Christian points me to my Lord and Savior as a fighter. It points me to the man who once in loneliness, surrounded by a few followers, recognized these Jews for what they were and summoned men to fight against them and who, God’s truth! was greatest not as a sufferer but as a fighter. In boundless love as a Christian and as a man I read through the passage which tells us how the Lord at last rose in His might and seized the scourge to drive out of the Temple the brood of vipers and adders. How terrific was His fight for the world against the Jewish poison. To-day, after two thousand years, with deepest emotion I recognize more profoundly than ever before the fact that it was for this that He had to shed His blood upon the Cross. As a Christian I have no duty to allow my self to be cheated, but I have the duty to be a fighter for truth and justice… And if there is anything which could demonstrate that we are acting rightly it is the distress that daily grows . For as a Christian I have also a duty to my own people."

      Adolf Hitler.

      January 19, 2012 at 5:01 pm |
    • derp

      Sorry jesutards, try as you may to insinuate otherwise, hitler was on your side.

      Please explain to me why an atheist would execute Jews, Atheists, immigrants and other non believers.

      January 19, 2012 at 5:03 pm |
    • bribarian


      January 19, 2012 at 5:09 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Martin T, it's obvious that you have never read Jeremiah 9:23

      Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise [man] glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty [man] glory in his might, let not the rich [man] glory in his riches:


      January 19, 2012 at 5:17 pm |
    • Really?

      Chris over 480 million people have been killed because of religions. Yuck!

      January 19, 2012 at 5:35 pm |
  5. Infernor

    The jews do not even deserve to live in peace taking a look at what they are doing to the middle-east (Palistina espacially). Iran is far more open and liberal than Israel will ever be. Way to set back liberty and democracy dozens of years, Israel and US! If mein kampf would once again make some people think about what Isreal really is, I APPLAUD YOU!

    January 19, 2012 at 3:13 pm |
    • MartinT

      You prove through your words that you are a racist. What is worse is that you say NOTHING to back up your claims. Empty words from an empty head, I suspect.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
  6. Prior

    "Those who seek the path to enlightenment must not be led astray."

    "Blessed are the Ori."

    January 19, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
  7. George

    Jews don't say o poor us and not anyone else that died in the camps, but should what was the largest part of the dead being Jews not be looked at and the others that died as well. It is tought in school about all the different people and races killed and in movies made. As far as Jews have all he money and power and blah, blah, blah, so what should Jewish people not reach for a dream that we all as people work so hard for!!!

    January 19, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
  8. Jon

    Unreal!!! 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 2:41 pm |
    • Infernor

      Jon, you should never believe millions and millions of people are just lead astray about Jews entirely, it is based on something. Look at the middle eas my friend and you will see. Jews are far from saints, they are a blood thirsty people who don't give a rats ass about the lives of peaceful muslims

      January 19, 2012 at 3:16 pm |
    • MartinT

      Neither group is without their faults, when religion is at hand, NO ONE wins!

      January 19, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
    • derp

      "who don't give a rats ass about the lives of peaceful muslims"

      All six of them?

      January 19, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
  9. MartinT

    It is SAD the number of immature people who come on websites like this and post nonsense. What happened to the Jewish people in Germany and under Hitler's rule easily makes the top five list of the worst of humankind. I put it right up there with the Catholic Church's handling of the Dark Ages when people were killed as heretics and witches. Easily ten times as many Europeans were killed by the Catholic Church during this time, as were killled in the Holocaust. Then, there is the violence, most of it religious in nature, being carried out in Africa. How many millions of people who's skin color is dark, have died horrible deaths? I am saddened by the totality of the brutality against one group over another simply because of religion.

    January 19, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
    • Jon

      @Martin!!! As a percentage of total population, way more Jews have died than any other, your examples are not even close. Do the math, then post your comments.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:32 pm |
    • Your local Darkie

      You sound sad Martin. Would you like to suck on my big ole nig ger D!CK?

      January 19, 2012 at 2:33 pm |
    • bobmc

      Well Marty me lad, Religon is only an excuse. Greed is the primus. The main reason people kill other peoples is because they can. One thing for certain, I dont see it ending anytime on my watch, and the other is, we are not getting of this planet alive. How many have ya saved yourself, versus how many you unknowingly stepped on. How many have ya put on the bus,versus the ones ya have thrown under. When one thinks of it, it really comes down to greed.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
    • MartinT

      Really Jon, so now it is a numbers game and we take the HUMANITY out of the equation all together. Sounds like the argument that MY father is bigger than YOUR father.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:03 pm |
    • MartinT

      Well, Bob me boy – I've never been a Marty, so I'll only assume that was meant for me. First, I'm a bit confused about your questions on how many I have saved, versus throwing under the bus. As an atheist, I am easily regarded as one of the most philanthropic men in the Boston area, and do it not for religon or some reward, but because I care. If that's what you meant. Also, I agree with much of what you said, even if I had a bit of trouble understanding it all.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:06 pm |
    • MartinT

      @ Mr. Local, I appreciate the offer and the psycho analysis, I assure you I am not sad in any way. You, however, are sad for the cowardice you show in your posting. I hold no ill will toward ignorance.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
    • bribarian

      If Martin knew the truth, it would pale in comparison to the evil done on all the non-jews by jews

      January 19, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
    • MartinT

      @bribarian, PLEASE feel free to enlighten me. I am NEVER without hope to learn new things and to be ever more enlightened. Pray tell.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:31 pm |
    • Prior

      "Those who reach enlightenment shall rejoice with the Ori forever."

      "Hallowed are the children of the Ori."

      January 19, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
  10. Himey The Jew

    I love Mein Kampf. The paper from the book is very good for assWhipin!!

    January 19, 2012 at 2:23 pm |
    • derp

      I find it a little rough

      January 19, 2012 at 5:05 pm |
  11. Ole Grandad

    As the old saying goes. Just toss another jew on the fire.

    January 19, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
  12. bribarian

    Obviously Jews dont want it being printed since it pegs them so perfectly for being the swindlers they are......

    January 19, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
    • MartinT

      What a crock, I am amazed at the "courage" the internet gives to cowards.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:24 pm |
  13. Jon

    WOW!!! 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 2:07 pm |
    • Takin a Deuce

      Jon...eat my SHYT!! Now GET BACK IN THAT OVEN.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:08 pm |
    • jason

      Your spelling is just ... unAmerican.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
    • tictac

      Hitler was a sick atheist.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
    • MartinT

      Wow right back at you, Jon. Been ANGRY long there, dude. Two things come to mind, 1) calling people "Jew Hating idiots" isn't healthy for an argument and 2) I'm not convinced that your reasoning and how you perceive the Jewish people's present state of mind is correct. While I am certain that we can NEVER allow a repeat of the Hollocaust, I am reminded of the Millions of Africans who have died similarly in Africa. IF we are to stop violence against humanity, we must not do so in a selective manner.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
    • MartinT

      @ tictac, sorry to burst your bubble but Hitler was NOT an atheist at all. In fact he was Catholic AND many of his underlings were as well. FAIL

      January 19, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
    • Karl Von Schnitzengroober

      Hitler was a genius. I wish he was still living...

      January 19, 2012 at 2:18 pm |
    • Jon

      @Martin!!! If you read all the ignorant Jew hating blogs here you too would be angry. Also, if you take all systematic excutions of groups of people throughout history and look at it as a percentage of that groups total population, the Jews by far have had more of there poeple killed as a percentage of total population than any other group in human history.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
    • Failing MartinT

      Review Positive Christianity. Also, look at Alfred Rosenberg and his ideas with particular attention to their importance to Hitler and the Nazi movement. Hitler was not at all fond of Catholics.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
    • ChristianTSW

      @MartinT If you knew anything about the Reichskirche (German state church) during Hitler's reign you would know that he was only religious for political reasons. He used religion for political gain and manipulated it to his own liking. He was not a Christian or a Catholic by any biblical standards. In his mind, he was God. You are seriously misinformed...

      January 19, 2012 at 2:54 pm |
    • MartinT

      @ Christian and Failing, I have one word for each of you – SPIN. So easily done, we do it all the time, we spin things to fit one's own reality and you each have SPUN your own version of reality well. I wonder how many OTHER historical figures feigned religion for "political purposes?" I suspect more than we can count. It is quite easy to try and BLAME atheism on the ills of the world, but it is much easier to PROVE that religions have been responsible for so much of the sensless violence throughout history. But, thanks for playing.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
    • MartinT

      @Christian, that sounds REMARKABLY like what the Catholic Church did for something like sixteen centuries, using religon/church for politcal reasons. I dare say more died in during those centuries than did at the hands of all the Atheists ever born.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:02 pm |
    • Failing MartinT

      MartinT – you will FAIL to prove anything so long as your arguments are based on distortions of the truth. Work on your grasp of history and remember, facts are your friends.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
    • MartinT

      @Failing, You are so correct and I bow to your obvious superior intellect. I suspect that you have never been wrong, in your own mind, ever. Good for you. It is so easy to correct us poor, ignorant souls, it must make you feel quite superior, such as you are. It must be difficult to live on this planet, seeing as how much more superior you are to the rest of us, and how superior your grasp of history and "facts" are. I bow to you, your great and wonderful OZ.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:11 pm |
    • MartinT

      @Failing, I do have to ask if you are a Christian? Of course you are, how else would you have reached such moral superiority to others.

      January 19, 2012 at 3:13 pm |
  14. Pope John Paul the Turd

    I thoroughly enjoy reading this book over and over again. The Holy Land is right here at the Vatican, under my dress.

    January 19, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
  15. John Fitzgerald Kennedy

    Myself, Bobby and Marilyn really enjoyed reading Mein Kampf after we had and hourse long Or Gy!!

    January 19, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
    • Lee Harvey Oswald

      Don't make me come back there!

      January 19, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
  16. bobmc

    It seems to be a Generation C 90-00 .... for the the last 20 years all I see from people are complaints. Slavery is still an issue in the US .. Com on man, Jews bashing 70 year historical event. I bet the oocupants of Jerico were not very keen of being Pro _isreal. The is the Generation of Whiners. It never ends.One thing is certain if he had his way, we all be blonde by now.

    January 19, 2012 at 2:03 pm |
    • MartinT

      @Bob, I truly hope English is NOT your native language. You make a few good points, but fail to convince me because it is hard to follow your logic. But, I do have to say that when generations allow themselves to forget the past they then allow those who have NOT forgotten the past, a foothold to repeat the past.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:07 pm |
  17. palintwit

    Neo-nazis will crawl over a mile of broken glass just to sniff the tire tracks of the truck that took Sarah Palin's dirty underwear to the laundry.

    January 19, 2012 at 2:02 pm |
    • berysax

      lol what!?!

      January 19, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
  18. Scott

    I'm of Jewish descent and feel it should be printed. You cannot edit history to be politically correct, you must learn from it. That goes for slavery, the holocaust, Stalinism and all other atrocities that are gross blemishes on the history of civilized man.

    January 19, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
    • palintwit

      The GOP, birthers, baggers and evangelicals are also a blemish on our society.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
    • MartinT

      Agreed Scott, as a race, we can not, nor should we allow others, to hide from history, even when that history reminds us of the worst of mankind. If we do not remember history, we are destined to repeat the mistakes made and if one looks at the current state of affairs in the US, one can see the startings of just such a thing.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
    • Ironicus

      Could you simply be honest and say you are an ethnic group? We are all human after all. There is no such thing as a Jewish "race."
      Race is a term used by bigots throughout history because they really thought other people were "races" and not slight differences in DNA.
      Start saying "ethnic" and I won't have a problem here.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
    • Maximus Erectus

      Ironicus Idioticus...bend over there so I can phuck that buttHOLE!!

      January 19, 2012 at 2:28 pm |
    • Ironicus

      As you can see, this little neo-nazi hates me because I tell the truth.
      He cannot refute a single truth but only talks like an angry child.
      How sad that we cannot help these mentally ill people.
      What's wrong, neo-ritter? Did Obama pee in your cornflakes this morning? lol

      January 19, 2012 at 2:46 pm |
  19. bribarian

    the professional victim strikes again

    January 19, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
  20. Raf Sanjani Salami

    Mein Kampf is like the second Bible for Islam.

    ALLAH AKBAR you phuckers...

    January 19, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
    • STLBroker

      Yeah, God IS Great!

      Ironic that you would advocate that people be thrown in ovens when you are the one that will burn.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:22 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.