The Berlin branch of the American Jewish Committee (AJC) filed a complaint Friday against the German branch of the online Amazon book distributers for selling books that deny the Holocaust.
“We must not allow the laws against denying the Holocaust and hate against minorities in Germany to be eroded through the proliferation of online companies,” AJC-Berlin’s Deidre Berger said in a statement.
Berger cited “The Auschwitz Myth” by William Staeglich and other Holocaust-denial titles that are available on the "Amazon.de" site on Friday. The books are also available on Amazon’s main U.S. site. AJC member Benjamin Schoeler told the Associated Press that AJC’s goal is to get Amazon.de to pull the offensive books that promote anti-Semitism off its shelves.
German law forbids Holocaust denial. Violators of the law face up to five years imprisonment. However, American law does not ban the distribution of material that advocates Holocaust denial.
Nonetheless, U.S. political leaders, including President Barack Obama, have expressed their disgust at Holocaust denial. During a visit to the Buchenwald Death Camp in Germany this past June, President Obama said, “To this day, there are those who insist that the Holocaust never happened – a denial of fact and truth that is baseless and ignorant and hateful.” Buchenwald was the site of death for some 56,000 people, more than 50,000 of whom were Jews.
“I have no patience for people who deny history,” Obama added, “and the history of the Holocaust is not something speculative.”