Scrapbookpages Blog

October 7, 2013

America’s Simon Wiesenthal Center forces German magazine to close down

This quote is from a news article in a German newspaper which you can read in full here:

Controversial World War II magazine to close

Bauer Media plans to stop printing the magazine “Der Landser,” though not for legal reasons. It had faced complaints about the magazine’s Second World War content from the Jewish Simon Wiesenthal Center.

Wehrmacht soldiers photographed in 1939

Wehrmacht soldiers photographed in 1939

The caption on the photo above states: “Wehrmacht soldiers take a break from a drill in 1939. (Photo: Josef Gierse) Soldiers like these are portrayed in the magazine as ‘decent guys’ ”

The crime committed by the German magazine “Der Landser,” was their on-going claim that the German Wehrmacht soldiers were “decent guys.”

This quote is from the German newspaper:

In July, the Simon Wiesenthal Center went public with several complaints and demanded that “Der Landser” be withdrawn from publishing. The Jewish center, headquartered in the US, was founded in 1977 and is an international NGO. One element of its activity is the hunt for surviving Nazi war criminals. In its complaints against “Der Landser,” the NGO invoked German laws against the use of Nazi symbols, against sedition and against holocaust denial. According to the accusations from Los Angeles, “Der Landser” propagates right-wing ideas and should therefore no longer be allowed to be in print.

Bauer Media Group announced the end of “Der Landser” on Yom Kippur, the highest Jewish holiday, which focuses on atonement and repentance. The Simon Wiesenthal Center was happy about the news: “We are very pleased that Bauer Media Group made the right decision,” Efraim Zuroff, who heads the Israel office of the organization and is its main Nazi hunter, told DW. “We did some serious research and clearly showed that there was a problem. People who served in units that had committed war crimes were presented in a completely neutral way and their crimes were being swept under the carpet. They were publically portrayed as people who simply did their duty, rather than as war criminals.”

The Simon Wiesenthal Center is named after the famous Nazi hunter, who made his home in Austria after World War II.  I previously blogged about him at

One of the first books that I purchased, when I started studying the Holocaust, was a book by Simon Wiesenthal, entitled “The Sunflower.” In the book, Wiesenthal was grousing about the fact that he would not have a sunflower on his grave, as the Germans did.

The photo below shows a German grave with a Sunflower on it.

German grave is decorated with a Sunflower

German grave is decorated with a Sunflower

The photo above is on this page of my website, where you can read about the German civilians who were imprisoned at Buchenwald in Special Camp No. 2, which was set up by the Soviets after World War II.

After reading Wisenthal’s book, I was able to understand the significance of sunflowers when I saw the graves at the site of the former Buchenwald camp.  I can’t quote from Wiesenthal’s book because I was so offended that I threw it into the trash.