• Germany's news in English
 

El Pais retracts Merkel comparison to Hitler

Published: 25 Mar 2013 07:10 GMT+01:00

The column was published on the paper's website and in its Andalusia regional edition, economist Juan Torres Lopez of the University of Seville.

"Angela Merkel, like Hitler, has declared war on the rest of the continent, this time to guarantee (Germany) its vital economic space," he wrote in an apparent reference to the Nazi concept of finding Lebensraum for the Third Reich.

"She punishes us to protect her large companies and banks and also to hide from her electorate the shameful model that has seen the poverty rate in her country rise to its highest level in 20 years, 25 percent of employees earn less than €9.15 an hour and half the population represent... a miserable one percent of all the nation's wealth."

After the column provoked shocked reactions online, the newspaper took it down from its website and apologized.

"El Pais has withdrawn the article 'Germany against Europe'... because it

contained statements that this newspaper considers inappropriate," it said.

"El Pais regrets that a supervisory error allowed the publication of this material. The opinions expressed by Torres Lopes are his alone."

The article had set media commentators and German Twitter users aflutter.

"Bitter. Now El Pais has also published an editorial, in which Merkel is compared to Hitler," wrote Robin Alexander, a journalist with German daily Die Welt, on the online message service Twitter.

"To put Merkel's policies on a level with Hitler's is as loco (crazy) as it gets," Mathieu von Rohr, Paris bureau chief for German weekly Der Spiegel, wrote on Twitter.

"Of course Merkel's (and everybody's) stance may be criticized. But to use Hitler is incendiary, stupid and irresponsible."

But the retraction also drew criticism.

"Shameful El Pais censoring an article by J. Torres Lopez for criticizing Merkel," wrote Twitter user Adrian Arcas Munoz.

AFP/The Local/mry

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

10:11 March 25, 2013 by blackboot11
This statement is not far so from the reality/truth here as one might think:

"She punishes us to protect her large companies and banks and also to hide from her electorate the shameful model that has seen the poverty rate in her country rise to its highest level in 20 years"

The Germans have a track record of trying to spread their ideals and power throughout the EU during the last century and are seemingly giving it another go in the 21st century in an economic version .

With this penchant, they have been on the wrong side of history most of the time. Will they not learn from their mistakes?
10:56 March 25, 2013 by raandy
It's easier to blame others for your problems than to face up to the truth.
15:31 March 25, 2013 by freechoice
the next country that is going to drag EU down is France! wait for the next financial bomb to explode. that will be the end of Euro.
22:58 March 25, 2013 by Bigfoot76
Hitting Germany and it's leaders with the Hitler bomb is very original and well thought. I am always impressed by countries that throw that card. We should start keeping statistics of how many times people post the infamous mustache on a face. I mean it never gets old right? Okay enough sarcasm. Seriously, drop the whole Hitler insult. It reveals more about those who are using it than those who they are using it against.
07:46 April 8, 2013 by Hendrich Stein
I looked up what it meant in wikipedia, and the concept is enlightening.

(German for "habitat" or literally "living room") was an important component of Nazi ideology in Germany. The Nazis supported territorial expansionism to gain Lebensraum ("living space") as being a law of nature for all healthy and vigorous peoples of superior races to displace people of inferior races; especially if the people of a superior race were facing overpopulation in their given territories. The German Nazi Party claimed that Germany inevitably needed to territorially expand because it was facing an overpopulation crisis within its Treaty of Versailles-designed boundaries that Adolf Hitler described: "We are overpopulated and cannot feed ourselves from our own resources". Thus expansion was justified as an inevitable necessity for Germany to pursue in order to end the country's overpopulation within existing confined territory, and provide resources necessary to its people's well-being. The idea of a Germanic people without sufficient space dates back to long before Adolf Hitler brought it to prominence.

The policy of Lebensraum implicitly assumed the superiority of Germans as members of an Aryan master race who by virtue of their superiority had the right to displace people deemed to be part of inferior races. The Nazis insisted that Lebensraum needed to be developed as racially homogenous to avoid intermixing with peoples deemed to be part of inferior races. As such peoples deemed to be part of inferior races living within territory selected to be Lebensraum, were subject to expulsion or destruction.The Nazis supported other nations that were pursuing their own Lebensraum, such as declaring support for Nazi Germany's ally Fascist Italy to pursue its own Lebensraum.]

The Nazi regime invoked a variety of precedents to justify the pursuit of Lebensraum.[4] One was invoking the precedent of the United States. Hitler declared that the size of European states was "absurdly small in comparison to their weight of colonies, foreign trade, etc.," which he contrasted to "the American Union which possesses at its base its own continent and touches the rest of the earth only with its summit." Hitler noted that the colonization of the continental United States by Nordic peoples of Europe that had a large internal market, material reproduction, and fertile biological reproduction; provided the closest model to that of Lebensraum.

_______________________

Merkle is telling Putin, we got your money from Cyprus now back off those natural gas reserves. You were almost as much of a pain as them in the 40's and you see what's happening, with more to come. We even won soccer and you must be jealous. Let me send the coach, talk to him. this way I won't say I did it
Today's headlines
Extreme heat causes Autobahn to rupture
A fissure on the Autobahn near Heidelberg. Photo: DPA

Extreme heat causes Autobahn to rupture

The heatwave sweeping across the country may have Germans flocking to the sea this weekend, but the extreme temperatures are also causing Autobahns to break apart. READ  

Nazi island resort to be turned into luxury flats
Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Nazi island resort to be turned into luxury flats

A vast Nazi mega-complex meant as holiday homes for German workers and later used by the Soviets as a Cold War barracks is about to be turned into luxury flats. READ  

Greece crisis
'Bundestag must vote on new bailout': Schäuble
A poster of German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble in Athens reads "For five years he has sucked your blood. Now tell him NO." Photo: DPA

'Bundestag must vote on new bailout': Schäuble

UPDATE: Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble said on Friday that there would be no quick release of bailout funds to Greece after the country's referendum on whether to accept its creditors' terms on Sunday. READ  

Activists give Dalai Lama 80th birthday stamp
The new Deutsche Post stamp showing the Dalai Lama. Photo: DPA

Activists give Dalai Lama 80th birthday stamp

Pro-Tibet activists have created a new limited-edition stamp featuring the Dalai Lama to mark the Tibetan spiritual leader's 80th birthday. READ  

Women's World Cup
'Germany will crack England': top coach
Star striker Celia Sasic. Photo: DPA

'Germany will crack England': top coach

The manager of European champions FFC Frankfurt told The Local he expects Germany to beat England in the third place play-off in the Women's World Cup, and predicted his protege Celia Sasic will grab a goal or two. READ  

NSA surveillance scandal
Calls grow for govt to act on NSA spying
Chancellor Angela Merkel, the highest-profile German victim of NSA spying, speaking on the phone. Photo: DPA

Calls grow for govt to act on NSA spying

Green Party security expert Konstantin von Notz told The Local on Friday that Chancellor Angela Merkel is failing to restore faith in the German-US partnership following fresh spying revelations. READ  

Germany reach semis of beach volleyball worlds
Ilka Semmler and Katrin Holtwick. Photo: DPA file

Germany reach semis of beach volleyball worlds

Germany's top beach volleyball pair are storming the world championships in Holland and prepare to face Brazil in the semis on Friday. READ  

Environment minister blasts Merkel, colleagues
Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks. Photo: DPA

Environment minister blasts Merkel, colleagues

Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks loosed a broadside against her cabinet colleagues on Friday in a guest article for Die Welt, saying that they had decided to do too little to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in a way that would cost too much. READ  

Greece crisis
BILD polls readers in own 'Greece referendum'
Image: BILD/screenshot

BILD polls readers in own 'Greece referendum'

Tabloid Bild continued its campaign against bailouts for Greece on Friday by calling its own "referendum", asking readers to fill out a poll on whether Germany should keep stumping up. German politicians were divided on how the Greek vote would affect Europe. READ  

Police confiscate WW2 tank hidden in cellar
The Panther tank removed from a cellar in Kiel, with a prosecutors' evidence label attached to its barrel. Photo: DPA

Police confiscate WW2 tank hidden in cellar

Police searched a villa in a wealthy suburb of Kiel on Wednesday and found a Second World War tank, a torpedo and other weaponry in the cellar. On Thursday they were still working on removing the tank. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Gallery
Police seize pensioner's WW2 heavy weapons haul
National
How to survive the Europe-wide heatwave
Sport
Is Schweini already out of the door at Bayern?
Politics
How German media shaped the Greece crisis
National
Car assembly robot crushes worker at Volkswagen
Rhineland
Weathermen red-faced over heatwave snow warning
Society
An eye for an eye? Mum protects child in playground with pepperspray
National
As it happened: Queen Elizabeth's final day in Germany
National
As it happened: Queen Elizabeth's second day in Germany
National
Queen Elizabeth II's first day in Germany - as it happened
National
Bus passengers tell fake racists where to get off
Politics
What's really in the Queen's handbag?
National
Germans say USA doesn't respect freedom
National
Yes, you CAN buy adult e-books before 10pm in Germany
VIDEO: Watch a 93-metre turbine crash to earth in slow motion
Gallery
Who's got a shot at the German Film Awards
Rhineland
Anger over 'child-free' beer garden
National
How do you do, Majestät?
National
Man defends right to pee in public with tear gas
Features
The Germans who won Waterloo for the British
Frankfurt
Should Germany ban circus animals?
Hamburg
Where people are having the most sex in Germany
Culture
Who Wants to be a Millionaire? Not this student...
National
Dresden's three-decade-long red light
Politics
Upper house calls for gay marriage now
Berlin
Berlin named 3rd-best city worldwide
Sport
In search of the toughest firefighter
Business & Money
German firms shine for European engineering students
Gallery
Hitler's paintings up for auction
National
German's 70-year search for murdered US pilot
Politics
What the G7 leaders agreed at Elmau
Business & Money
What really makes Germans happy
National
Playmobil builder leaves worldwide legacy
National
The car share that became a drug run
Politics
What Snowden revealed to Germany
Rhineland
Why wolf cubs are being raised by hand
National
Hitler's booze cave found
National
Environment makes Germany worth living in
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

6,945
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd