German Jews see red over plans for sausage museum on ex-Nazi site

BERLIN • Germany's Jewish community is angry at plans to build a museum celebrating a local sausage delicacy on the site of a former facility where the Nazis held Jews before sending them to the Buchenwald concentration camp in the eastern state of Thuringia.

Friends of the Thuringian Sausage, an association that runs a museum in honour of the delicacy named after the region, wants to move to a new building to be located on land where the Nazis held prisoners in a so-called sub-camp in World War II.

"We are shocked and irritated by the total lack of sensitivity," said Mr Reinhard Schramm, head of the 800-strong Jewish community in Thuringia.

"We are in talks with city officials and hope we can find a solution that honours the victims."

The site of the former sub-camp lies on the outskirts of the city of Muehlhausen, some 80km north-west of Buchenwald, on a patch of land that a private investor bought from the government in 2008.

The investor now wants to build a theatre, a hotel and a building to house the new sausage museum - a project that has received the backing of the city.

The site of the former sub-camp lies on the outskirts of the city of Muehlhausen, some 80km north-west of Buchenwald, on a patch of land that a private investor bought from the government in 2008.

The Muehlhausen city council held a meeting last Thursday attended by representatives of the Jewish community to find a solution, Mr Schramm said.

One idea being considered is to ensure that the new project includes some kind of memorial to the victims of the Nazis.

A spokesman for the First German Sausage Museum, currently located in Holzhausen, 60km south of Muehlhausen, did not respond to an e-mail asking for comment.

The museum announced last Wednesday its plans to move to Muehlhausen, saying the new site would give it more seating capacity and allow it to include new attractions.

Thuringian sausages, usually made with pork mince, caraway, marjoram and garlic, are one of the most famous of the more than 1,500 sausage varieties made in Germany.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on February 03, 2019, with the headline 'German Jews see red over plans for sausage museum on ex-Nazi site'. Print Edition | Subscribe