Amazon is facing major criticism after a Jewish advocacy group discovered that it is selling and streaming over 30 Nazi propaganda films.
According to Americans Against Antisemitism, 30 Nazi propaganda films are available to stream or to buy on Amazon in unedited form, without a disclaimer and without historical or editorial comments.
The advocacy group wrote an open letter to Amazon about its concerns over the library of Nazi films. The list includes infamously antisemitic titles such as Der Ewige Jude/The Eternal Jew, Triumph of the Will by Leni Riefenstahl and The Rothschilds’ Shares in Waterloo.
“It appears Amazon is a hotbed of Nazi propaganda. Literal, original, unadulterated Nazi propaganda that was produced in the Third Reich,” the letter said.
“In 2021, it’s the overwhelming consensus in media and academia that original hate content, be it Mein Kampf or Triumph of the Will, should never be presented without adequate prefatory context and, if done correctly, never presented continuously or in its entirety (with or without comment to break up the content so as not to satisfy the nefarious intentions of war-criminal propagandists).”
The letter noted that “the original-version Nazi films offered by Amazon do not do this.” It called the Nazi propaganda films available on Amazon Prime Video “sickening.”
Yad Vashem Chairman Dani Dayan said to Israel National News: "The availability of Nazi propaganda films is deplorable and serves to propagate antisemitism, a phenomenon that is unfortunately growing worldwide. Yad Vashem intends to appeal to Amazon to remove this antisemitic and racist content from its platform."
It continued: “For the nominal fee of $2 to rent or $4.99 to buy I could watch in Standard Definition a film that begins with the great anticipation of Aryan masses for the Fuhrer as he eventually appears soaring above in the sky, as though a demigod descending to the netherworld, touching down to an ecstatic, rapturous, raucous reception in the (in)famous city of Nuremberg where the public sphere was completely outfitted in Nazi regalia.”
“Considering the severity of this issue and the need for speedy remedy, it’s my sincere hope you will look into it without unnecessary delay,” concluded the letter. “I’m committing to keeping this a matter that ought to be resolved privately with the expectation of a response acknowledging the problem within a reasonable timeframe. It needn’t be resolved instantly, just initially addressed to ensure we’re on the same page as to how such problematic contents are viewed in light of Amazon’s published policies and established precedents.”
Former Brooklyn assembleyman Dov Hikind, the founder of Americans Against Anti-Semitism, called the availability of the films “insane,” adding that “it makes no sense.”
“Why would Amazon in 2022 [sell] not only this film but dozens of other films that glorify the Nazis and in all of these films there is no explanation, there is no commentary, there is nothing,” Hikind said. “Many will watch this film and literally say, ‘This is amazing. This is extraordinary.’”
Hikind asked: “Why would Amazon be making money off Nazis?”
“Right now in our time we have a major American company that is distributing Nazi propaganda all over the world,” Hikind said. “You can buy this film. You can see this horror. In places all over Europe, you cannot do this because they understand the danger of these kind of films.”
Commenting that Amazon’s selling of the Nazi films comes during a period in which global antisemitism has risen to historical levels, Hikind asked Amazon: “What could possibly be the purpose of [making available] Triumph of the Will?”
“You have expressed that you understood that in the past,” he said. “So why are you participating? Why are you part of this today? Shame on you and put an end to this right now.”