Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Somewhere, somehow, someone

Is having a good time telling war stories...and it has to stop!
At first glance, "Der Landser" might look like some sort of harmless pulp adventure magazine. Every week, its website proclaims, the journal tells stories from "world history's biggest war, as seen though the eyes of the fighting troops and the individual soldier."
But now the Simon Wiesenthal Center now wants to put an end to the magazine - the US-based Jewish organization has called for "Der Landser" to be cancelled for propagating far-right ideology.
Founded in 1954, the journal takes its name from the colloquial term for a German soldier used during World War II. It sells its stories as eye-witness accounts of heroic Wehrmacht soldiers - without putting things into the historical context of the Nazi era - let alone mentioning war crimes perpetrated by the German troops.
No historical context
Klaus Geiger of Kassel University, a professor of political sociology who wrote his 1974 PhD dissertation on "Der Landser," says that is the key problem.
Been published for nearly six decades, but now it's dangerous. Or, maybe the Nazi-hunters have run out of war criminals to track down, and need something with which to keep busy. So, it's freedom of speech and press that has to bow to the greater good of Germany...a bit totalitarian?

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