Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf will be available to buy in Germany for the first time in 70 years.
Reprinting the Nazi manifesto was banned after WW2 by Bavaria’s regional government, which held the copyright.
The copyright has now expired and Munich’s Institute of Contemporary History is to publish a new edition.
Mein Kampf’s new versions are expected in many countries. Historians say the book helps academics understand what happened in the Nazi era.
Its annotated version, with thousands of academic notes, will aim is to show that Mein Kampf (My Struggle) is incoherent and badly written, rather than powerful or seductive.
Many Jewish groups have welcomed this particular publication, saying it is important to have access to a critical edition to help explain the Holocaust.
Mein Kampf was originally printed in 1925 – eight years before Adolf Hitler came to power.
After Nazi Germany was defeated in 1945, the Allied forces handed the copyright to the book to the state of Bavaria.
The local authorities have refused to allow the book to be reprinted to prevent incitement of hatred, although the book was so widely printed during the war that it remained relatively easily available.
Under European copyright law, the rights of an author of a literary or artistic work runs for the life of the author and for 70 years after his death – in Adolf Hitler’s case on April 30 1945, when he shot himself in his bunker in Berlin.
Those rights cease on the first day of January, 70 years after Hitler’s death, and so publishers now have free access to the original text.
However, German officials have said they will limit public access to the text amid fears that this could stir neo-Nazi sentiment.
“Mentioning that Hitler managed to rebuild Germany in a short time following its defeat in WWI, Kim Jong-un issued an order for the Third Reich to be studied in depth and asked that practical applications be drawn from it,” the source reportedly said.
North Korea has blasted a report that Kim Jong-un gave out copies of Adolf Hitler’s memoir Mein Kampf to officials on his birthday
North Korea’s Ministry of People’s Security, which is responsible for policing, issued an angry response which was carried by the country’s official news agency, KCNA.
It dismissed the report as a “smear campaign” written by “a handful of human scum… moving desperately to deter [North Korea’s] progress”.
The defectors were being used by South Korea and the US, it went on.
The ministry was determined to “physically remove [the] despicable human scum who are committing treason”, the statement added.
The two Koreas remain technically at war after the 1950-53 Korean war ended with an armistice, not a peace treaty.
Ties between the two are currently very tense in the wake of Pyongyang’s February 12 nuclear test.
It is estimated that more than 20,000 North Koreans have defected to the South since the 1950s.
However, fleeing North Korea is dangerous, and defectors who are repatriated to North Korea face punishments including labor camps and execution, activists say.
Russian opera singer Yevgeny Nikitin has pulled out of a star role at this year’s Bayreuth Festival in Germany following publicity about a swastika tattoo.
Yevgeny Nikitin was to have debuted in the lead role of a new production of the Flying Dutchman opera on Wednesday.
He said the tattoos were a mistake of his youth, but had to quit because the German media drew attention to them.
The Nazi past is a sensitive issue for the festival, which only shows operas by composer Richard Wagner.
Baritone Yevgeny Nikitin has pulled out of this year's Bayreuth Festival in Germany following publicity about a swastika tattoo
Richard Wagner’s daughter-in-law, Winifred Wagner, who headed the festival under Nazi rule, was a strong admirer of Adolf Hitler. Richard Wagner himself often expressed anti-Semitic views in his writings.
An avid Richard Wagner fan, Adolf Hitler was a frequent guest at the festival and helped fund it during his dictatorship.
“I was not aware of the extent of the irritation and offence these signs and symbols would cause, particularly in Bayreuth given the context of the festival’s history,” Yevgeny Nikitin was quoted as saying by the DPA news agency.
“I had them done in my youth. It was a big mistake and I wish I’d never done it,” he added.
The tattoo shows a swastika, with another image superimposed, according to German media reports.
The controversy was sparked when a culture programme on German ZDF television mentioned the tattoos in a report on baritone Yevgeny Nikitin, 38, on Friday.
“They were just part of our underground culture,” he told the programme.
The singer decided to resign after organizers confronted him about the images, a statement on the festival’s website said.
Secret wartime papers exchanged between MI5 officials reveal that the Nazis’ plans to conquer Britain included a deadly assault on Sir Winston Churchill with exploding chocolate.
Adolf Hitler’s bomb-makers coated explosive devices with a thin layer of rich dark chocolate, then packaged it in expensive-looking black and gold paper.
The Germans planned to use secret agents working in Britain to discreetly place the bars of chocolate – branded as Peter’s Chocolate – among other luxury items taken on trays into the dining room used by the War Cabinet during the Second World War.
The lethal slabs of confection were packed with enough explosives to kill anyone within several metres.
But Hitler’s plot was foiled by British spies who discovered they were being made and tipped off one of MI5’s most senior intelligence chiefs, Lord Victor Rothschild.
Nazis’ plans to conquer Britain included a deadly assault on Sir Winston Churchill with exploding chocolate
Lord Victor Rothschild, a scientist in peace time as well as a key member of the Rothschild banking family, immediately typed a letter to a talented illustrator seconded to his unit asking him to draw poster-size images of the chocolate to warn the public to be on the look-out for the bars.
His letter to the artist, Laurence Fish, is dated May 4, 1943 and was written from his secret bunker in Parliament Street, central London.
The letter, marked “Secret”, reads:
“I wonder if you could do a drawing for me of an explosive slab of chocolate.
“We have received information that the enemy are using pound slabs of chocolate which are made of steel with a very thin covering of real chocolate.
“Inside there is high explosive and some form of delay mechanism… When you break off a piece of chocolate at one end in the normal way, instead of it falling away, a piece of canvas is revealed stuck into the middle of the piece which has been broken off and a ticking into the middle of the remainder of the slab.
“When the piece of chocolate is pulled sharply, the canvas is also pulled and this initiates the mechanism.
“I enclose a very poor sketch done by somebody who has seen one of these.
‘It is wrapped in the usual sort of black paper with gold lettering, the variety being PETERS.
“Would it be possible for you to do a drawing of this, one possibly with the paper half taken off revealing one end and another with the piece broken off showing the canvas.
“The text should indicate that this piece together with the attached canvas is pulled out sharply and that after a delay of seven seconds the bomb goes off.”
The letter was found by Laurence Fish’s wife, journalist Jean Bray, as she sorted through his possessions following the artist’s death, aged 89, in 2009.
Jean Bray has spent the past two years putting together a book of her late husband’s work – Pick Up A Pencil. The Work Of Laurence Fish.
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