The American Jewish Committee revealed plans to sue the German branch of retail giants Amazon as it claims some of the books sold by the company questioned the Holocaust and trivialised the Nazis.
The fifty titles under scrutiny include works such as The Auschwitz Myth – Legend or Reality by Wilhelm Staglich and many of them are classified as being unsuitable for under 18s by the German authorities, the AJC claimed.
Amazon, on the other hand, say that they definitely don’t sell books that have been banned and that instead of removing the books in question they would prefer to open discussion – in the interests of free speech. However, a spokesperson also said that they had recently removed some books deemed to trivialise or glorify the Nazis from sale.
I find this debate an extremely difficult one. On one hand I abhor the thought of anyone trying to deny that such atrocities ever took place, but on the other hand I firmly believe in people having the liberty to put their ideas into the public domain for others to condemn or consider at will. The thought of any books being banned terrifies me, but then so does the idea of people being sold a glorified version of past events that could potentially spark a repetition of opinion, if not of action.
I suppose my liberal opinion on publishing is perhaps more geared towards fictional accounts. Anything claiming to tell ‘the truth’ about such grave issues and then attempting to trivialise them certainly wouldn’t be particularly welcome in my local book shop.