BERLIN, Jan 25 — Excerpts from Hitler’s “Mein Kampf” will be wiped from a magazine supplement due to go on sale in Germany tomorrow following the threat of legal action from the state of Bavaria, the publishers of the magazine said today.
Passages from the Nazi dictator’s work were to appear alongside critical analysis as a supplement to the historical magazine Zeitungszeugen, which reprints annotated pages from Nazi newspapers of the 1920s and 1930s.
The Bavarian state finance ministry in southern Germany, which owns the copyright to “Mein Kampf”, said last week that publishing the extracts in the supplement would breach copyright law and that they were looking into legal action.
Now only the accompanying commentary to the text will be legible, to ‘prevent escalation’, British publisher Peter McGee said in a letter to readers, adding he wanted to make sure police do not confiscate copies of the supplement from kiosks.
“In tomorrow’s supplement of Zeitungszeugen, under the title of ‘The Unreadable Book’, only the analytical passages will be readable ... we have blotted out the passages taken from “Mein Kampf,” McGee said.
The autobiographical work, which outlines the Nazi doctrine of Aryan supremacy, is difficult to obtain in Germany due to strict publishing laws.
The plans to publish parts of the text, still a taboo in Germany more than 85 years after the book was written, met criticism last week from some Jewish communities.
“Holocaust survivors are appalled at the insensitivity and crass commercialism that would motivate the publication of Hitler’s hate-filled book in the historic cradle of the Nazi terror regime,” Elan Steinberg, of the American Gathering of Holocaust Survivors and their Descendants, said in a statement last week.
McGee said the intention of the supplement was to educate people about Hitler’s crude ideas and demask the text.
The dissemination of Nazi ideology for non-educational purposes has been outlawed in Germany since the end of World War Two. Swastikas and the stiff-armed Nazi salute are also banned. — Reuters