Amazon.com Drops Jigsaw Puzzle of Dachau

By JTA

Published October 02, 2012.
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The American online retailer Amazon.com has stopped selling a jigsaw puzzle featuring the Dachau Nazi concentration camp following complaints.

The puzzle has 252 parts that together form a picture of the camp. Before it was taken offline Oct. 1, the product description said the toy was intended for customers eight years old and above. It sold for $24.99.

Last week, Gerda Hasselfeldt, leader of the Christian Social Union group in Germany’s parliament, wrote to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos that the toy was “a slap in the face” to the camp’s survivors, the German newspaper Der Spiegel reported.

A spokesman for the nonprofit Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial told the German daily Münchner Merkur that he is outraged by the puzzle. “The toy is a trivialization of the place and its history,” Dirk Riedel said, adding that memorial officials wanted the legality of sales of the puzzle on Amazon to be reviewed.

The image was taken by Robert Harding, a photographer who has provided countless pictures for puzzles, some 80,000 of which are offered by Amazon alone. As of Monday morning, the link to the puzzle was no longer available and it appeared that the Web retailer had taken it offline.

Dachau was the first Nazi concentration camp, located in the small German town of Dachau, about 10 miles northwest of Munich. The camp was established in March 1933 and liberated in April 1945.

More than 200,000 prisoners passed through the camp, and over 30,000 “officially” died there, although the more accurate figure is certainly much higher, according to the Jerusalem-based Yad Vashem World Center for Holocaust Research, Documentation, Education and Commemoration.


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