Germany revives Hitler's ghost with book reprints, calls for teaching 'lies' of Nazism in schools

German leader Adolf Hitler making four different gestures in a series of photographs taken by Heinrich Hoffman in September 1930.(Wikipedia/German Federal Archives)

Murderous dictator Adolf Hitler is back in the news in his own country as Germany's Institute for Contemporary History is reprinting his famous manifesto, "Mein Kampf," this time with many annotations to supposedly expose its "lies, half-truths and vicious tirades."

German teachers and lawmakers are also going a step further, calling for inclusion of excerpts from the republished version of "Mein Kampf" in the country's school curriculum.

The German Teachers' Union and the Social-Democratic Party (SDP) said teaching schoolchildren about Hitler's highly controversial book will help them learn the roots of racism and modern anti-Semitism in Germany.

The educators and the lawmakers also argued that blocking the publication and teaching of "Mein Kampf" will only make the youth more curious, and may lead to misinterpretation of the book.

In an interview with the German newspaper Handelsblatt, lawmaker Ernst Dieter Rossman, a member of the SDP, said it is incumbent upon modern educators to teach about Hitler's wrong views.

"To historically unmask this anti-Semitic, dehumanising polemical pamphlet and to explain the propaganda mechanism through appropriately qualified teachers is a task of modern education," Rossman was quoted by as saying.

German Education Secretary Johanna Wanka also welcomed the republication and the proposed teaching of the "Mein Kampf" in schools in the country, saying these will make sure that Hitler's views in the book will not go "un-contradicted."

"Students have questions, and it is right that they can get rid of these in the classroom and talk about the issue," Wanka was also quoted by as saying.

Educator Josef Kraus meanwhile said that in the Internet age, Hitler's work is all the more vulnerable to misinterpretation.

"Nowadays, with the power of the Internet, everyone has access to everything. So it's more important to me that something like this can be discussed in a differentiated and critical manner," Kraus said.