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Adlurges West German State Not to Revive First Verse of Nationalanthem

The Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith has called upon officials of the West German state of Baden-Wurttemberg to reconsider their “ill-advised decision” to revive the long-banned first verse of the national anthem which contains the words “Deutschland uber alles.”

In a cable to Baden-Wurttemberg’s President, Lothar Spaeth. Abraham Foxman, ADL’s associate national director and head of its International Affairs Division, pointed out that the words “Deutschland uber alles, like the swastika, symbolize to the world the brutality of Nazism. Giving legitimacy to such a highly identifiable symbol of the Nazi regime can only weaken the effort to educate the public of Nazism’s evil and can raise questions about the German commitment to reject that past.”

A copy of the ADL cable was also sent to Gunther van Well, West Germany’s Ambassador to the United States.