BERLIN (Dec. 6)
A neo-Nazi film, supported with subsidies from several German state governments, has provoked a swarm of controversy here.
Viewers say director Winfried Bonengel allowed neo-Nazi Bela Althans to rave on about Auschwitz lies without any opposition.
A German newspaper reported Monday that Ignatz Bubis, head of the German Jewish community, plans to ask that criminal charges be brought against Althans and others over at least 10 passages in the film that he says violate German law.
The film has provoked and worried the Jewish community for weeks.
On Sunday, opponents of the film prevented it from opening in Hamburg.
The German state governments that helped finance the film — Hesse, Hamburg, Brandenburg and Mecklenburg-Pomerania — have asked that the film’s distribution be stopped.
It is unclear why these governments helped underwrite the production of the 83-minute film, called “Profession: Neo-Nazi.”
According to reports, in one scene Althans stands in a gas chamber in Auschwitz, while he maintains that all Jews who were at the camp survived and are now collecting money from the state.
Bubis, who called the film “pure Nazi propaganda,” said the lies about Auschwitz and the film’s call for a takeover of power by the Nazi Party violate Germany’s Constitution.