German censorship of poster criticizing EU immigration policy draws comparison with Goebbels
BERLIN - German culture minister Bernd Neumann allegedly censored a museum postor critical of the European Union's immigration policy - drawing scathing responses, including a comparison to Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels.
The exhibition, titled "Strangers - Images of the Other in Germany and France, 1871 to the present," is currently running at the German Historical Museum in Berlin. It addresses how "foreigners" were perceived by the majorities in Germany and France, and includes books, posters and newspaper clippings seething with hate and incitement against eastern European immigrants, Africans and Jews.
According to weekly Die Zeit, before the exhibition opened, one of its posters was altered. The original sign, referring to the situation of migrants in reunified Germany, had said: "While borders within Europe disappear, the European Community has isolated itself against strangers. Fortress Europe remains closed to immigrants."
The new poster says instead, "The German ministry of immigration and refugees promotes the integration of immigrants in Germany."
The weekly Der Spiegel reported that a representative of the culture minister examined the exhibition before it was opened to the public, and the sign was changed after his visit.
Museum director Hans Ottomeier, however, insisted "there was no political intervention in the texts."
The culture minister did not comment.
Die Zeit had scathing criticism for the ministry, dubbing it the Information Ministry, after the Nazi ministry ran by Joseph Goebbels. "You can't take a museum controlled by a government ministry seriously," the weekly said.
The exhibition, a joint project with the Paris Immigration Museum, closes on January 31. Meanwhile, visitors can find the censored text in the English exhibition booklet.