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Austria threatens to expropriate house of Hitler's childhood

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Austria threatens to expropriate house of Hitler's childhood

Post  Lamplighter on Wed Jan 14, 2015 12:51 pm


An exterior view of Adolf Hitler's birth house in Braunau am Inn, Austria. The Austrian government is looking at options that would allow it to expropriate the house where Hitler spent his early

VIENNA (AP) — The Austrian government is looking at options that would allow it to expropriate the house where Adolf Hitler spent his early childhood as it seeks to end a dispute with the owner over its use, officials said Wednesday.

The move is the latest in efforts by the government to ensure that the house is not turned to a use that makes it even more of a shrine for Hitler's admirers. Municipal officials in Braunau, where the house stands, already complain that it draws neo-Nazi visitors to the town on the border with Germany.

Reacting to reports in local media, Interior Ministry spokesman Karl-Heinz Grundboeck said his ministry expects expert opinions by the end of the month on expropriation if the owner — a woman authorities refuse to identify — turns down a government offer to buy it.

The Interior Ministry has rented the house for years to prevent its misuse, subletting it to various charitable organizations. The building has stood empty since a workshop for the mentally disabled moved out more than three years ago.

Local officials say the woman vetoed plans to move in a new charity and a school late last year because she was opposed to renovations that would be required. "We've tried very hard to find a solution," alderman Harry Buchmayer told Wednesday's Kurier newspaper. "But she does not seem ready to cooperate."

Grundboeck described expropriation as the "last option," saying the government hoped the owner would agree to sell. She reportedly has turned down past offers. Among prospective buyers over the past few years was a Russian parliamentarian who threatened to raze it — a plan doomed to fail as the Renaissance-era building is under historical protection.
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Re: Austria threatens to expropriate house of Hitler's childhood

Post  bb1 on Wed Jan 14, 2015 1:00 pm

That row has been going on for a while now, hasn't it? Hitler or not, it's a lovely building; is it a shrine, as he was little more than baby when his family lived there?

Maybe the answer is indeed for the government to sieze it and turn it into some suitable - a museum dedicated to the wickedness of intolerance should keep the funny salute squad out?

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Re: Austria threatens to expropriate house of Hitler's childhood

Post  Lamplighter on Wed Jan 14, 2015 1:19 pm

bb1 wrote:That row has been going on for a while now, hasn't it? Hitler or not, it's a lovely building; is  it a shrine, as he was little more than baby when his family lived there?

Maybe the answer is indeed for the government to sieze it and turn it into some suitable - a museum dedicated to the wickedness of intolerance should keep the funny salute squad out?
No shrine as Austrians do prefer to forget that he was born Austrian - in 1925 he took German nationality so he could become eligible to be Chancellor should that ever happen.   The neo-nazis do try and get into the house but fail always.  It's like the case of his parents: "The tombstone marking the grave of Adolf Hitler's parents, a place of pilgrimage for neo-Nazis, has been removed from an upper Austrian village cemetery at the request of a descendant."


http://www.theguardian.com/world/2012/mar/30/adolf-hitler-parents-grave-tombstone
I understand neo-Nazis do still visit the Wolf's Lair - where The July plotters almost succeeded in killing him, and Landsberg Prison in Bavaria, where he wrote Mein Kampf, he was there for just under a year after leading an abortive putsch in Munich.    LL
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Former owner of Hitler's birth house to sue Austria

Post  Lamplighter on Wed Feb 01, 2017 8:58 am

The former owner of the house where Adolf Hitler was born has launched a legal battle against the Austrian government for expropriating the building, a court official said on Tuesday.

The state seized the dilapidated building in the northern town of Braunau in December after MPs approved an expropriation law specifically aimed at the controversial property.

The move came after years of bitter wrangling with owner Gerlinde Pommer who had been renting the premises to the interior ministry since the 1970s and refused to sell the building or carry out essential renovation works.

The government said it had been necessary to force a decision on the issue to stop the building from becoming a neo-Nazi shrine.

But Pommer has now launched proceedings against the expropriation legislation, Austria's constitutional court confirmed on Tuesday.

"The court will verify whether the law is valid," spokesman Wolfgang Sablatnig told AFP, adding the procedure was likely to last several months.

Pommer's lawyer threatened to take the case to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg if Austrian judges found in favour of the government. "To put it bluntly, the standard legal requirements for an expropriation are missing," Gerhard Lebitsch told Austrian newspaper Kurier.

Pommer's family had owned for nearly a century the yellow corner house where the future Nazi dictator was born on April 20, 1889.

Although Hitler only spent a short time at the property, it continues to draw Nazi sympathisers from around the world.

The 800-square-metre (8,600-feet) building has been empty since the rental agreement between Austria and Pommer fell apart in 2011.

Until then, the government had been renting the premises for around €4,800 ($5,000) a month and used it as a centre for people with disabilities.

The deal however came to an abrupt end six years ago when Pommer refused a much-needed upgrade.

Even before her new legal challenge, it was not clear what the government planned to do with the property.

The interior minister's push to have it torn down was met with angry resistance from other politicians and historians. Instead, it looked most likely that the property would be used by a charity.

Every year on Hitler's birthday, anti-fascist protesters organise a rally outside the building, next to a memorial stone reading: "For Peace, Freedom and Democracy. Never Again Fascism, Millions of Dead Warn."


Memorial stone outside Hitler's birth house.
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