School books CAN call D-Day 'invasion': Berlin court
The Local · 4 Feb 2016, 14:22
Published: 04 Feb 2016 14:22 GMT+01:00
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The history book taught in his son’s school described the Normandy landings, in which the Allied forces made the biggest amphibious landing in history on France’s Atlantic coast, as an "invasion".
This was both inappropriate and an insult to the soldiers who died in the assault, said the Kreuzberg parent.
The Allies could not be seen as invaders because they were liberating an occupied land, he argued.
He further complained that the book’s description of the Nazi attack on its western neighbours in 1940 as “the western offensive” was minimizing the criminality of the act.
Although these terms were critically discussed in the class, the parent demanded a new book be used, arguing that the educational authorities are legally bound to take a position which opposes that violent rule of the Nazis.
The court disagreed. Parents do not have a right to demand that a school book be banned, saying teaching the book did not infringe upon a parent’s right to raise their child as they saw fit.
The court also pointed out that even in the countries which fought on the Allied side, the Normandy landings are described in history books as an ‘invasion.’
The court also argued that nothing in the book attempted to insult the lives of fallen allied soldiers or to minimize Nazi atrocities.
According to Berlin daily Tagesspiegel, the book was written by an award-winning history teacher.
Robert Rauh was named history teacher of the year in 2013 and told Tagesspiegel that “the term ‘invasion’, which was already used by the Allies in 1944, describes a military operation.”