German Court Rules Adolf Hitler Church Bell Lawful

The church bell embossed with a swastika and the text: 'Everything for the Fatherland Adolf Hitler' in the Jakobskirche village church pictured on June 13, 2017 in Herxheim, Germany. For 82 years the 1930s-era church bell, cast when Germany was ruled by Adolf Hitler, hung in the 1,000-year-old church tower …
Thomas Lohnes/Getty

BERLIN (AP) – A German appeals court has rejected the complaint of a Jewish man against a town’s decision to allow a bell dedicated to Adolf Hitler to continue to hang in a church tower.

The Koblenz state court on Wednesday upheld a lower court’s rejection of the complaint from the unidentified relative of Holocaust survivors, who argued the bell was a “mockery and ridicule of the victims of Hitler’s terror.”

The Herxheim am Berg council voted last year to preserve the bell, which carries the inscription “Everything for the Fatherland – Adolf Hitler” above a swastika. It also announced plans to place an explanatory plaque nearby in the hope of sparking dialogue about violence and injustice.

The Koblenz court found the response appropriate, saying the town wasn’t trying to downplay the Holocaust.

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