A number of international bookshops, including Amazon, have been selling Adolf Hitler’s book Mein Kampf, accompanied by a white supremacist blurb and price.
The edition, listed not only by Amazon but also US supermarket chains Walmart and Barnes & Noble, was accompanied by a description that portrayed Hitler’s worldview in a positive light.
On the Barnes & Noble website, the blurb stated:
This book has set a path toward a much higher understanding of the self and of our magnificent destiny as living beings part of this Race on our planet. It shows us that we must not look at nature in terms of good or bad, but in an unfiltered manner. It describes what we must do if we want to survive as a people and as a Race.
This English version, by James Murphy, is described as the “official NSDAP translation”. NSDAP is the German acronym for the Nazi party’s full name.
In addition, the price on each of the websites was set specifically at $14.88. In contemporary neo-Nazi circles, the number “1488” is used as a cypher for white supremacy.
“1488” consists of two parts. The number 14 refers to the “14 words” motto – “We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children” – while 88 stands for “Heil Hitler”, as H is the alphabet’s eighth letter.
In the UK, the book’s publisher Random House has long donated the royalties to charity. Its availability has led to further commercial issues: in 2011, for instance, a branch of Waterstone’s accidentally marketed it as a “perfect Christmas present”.
Both Amazon and Barnes & Noble had already been forced to apologise in 2000, when an investigation by the Simon Wiesenthal Centre showed that Mein Kampf could easily be purchased in Germany, despite its illegality, through the companies’ online stores.
As of Tuesday morning, Amazon and Walmart had withdrawn the new $14.88 listing, but the Barnes & Noble copy was still available.