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El Pais retracts Merkel comparison to Hitler

The Local · 25 Mar 2013, 07:10

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

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"El Pais has withdrawn the article 'Germany against Europe'...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

Story continues below…

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)

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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
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