Amazon removes 'despicable' Christmas decorations depicting concentration camps: 'I am appalled beyond words'

Dillon Thompson

Amazon has removed a number of Christmas decorations from its site, following outrage over the fact that the products depicted images of the Auschwitz concentration camp. 

The products, which were posted by third-party sellers, included a variety of Christmas ornaments, a mousepad and a bottle opener that featured photos of the concentration camp where nearly one million Jewish people were killed by Nazis during World War II.

It's unclear how long the items were available online, but their removal came shortly after the Auschwitz Memorial, which manages the camp's former site, shared images of the products on Twitter. 

"Selling 'Christmas ornaments' with images of Auschwitz does not seem appropriate," the museum wrote on Sunday. "Auschwitz on a bottle opener is rather disturbing and disrespectful. We ask @amazon to remove the items of those suppliers."

Other Twitter users quickly joined in sharing their disappointment, with many calling for the products to be taken down immediately. 

"This is absolutely disgusting!!! I am appalled beyond words. Amazon, please remove these items immediately. The people that walked through those gates didn’t die for you to profit decades later!" one user wrote.

"Thank you for calling attention to this, and help in getting these despicable products removed," another commented

Following its original post, the Auschwitz Memorial shared more images from a different seller, this time featuring a mousepad and an ornament displaying a train that the museum called a "freight car used for deporting Jews for extermination either."  

The museum tweeted later on Sunday that Amazon had removed all products depicting the Nazi camp from its website. Amazon later confirmed that claim, telling the New York Times in a statement that it had taken the items down and stating that "all sellers must follow our selling guidelines and those who do not will be subject to action, including potential removal of their account."

Still, some were frustrated that the decorations had been available in the first place. Jonathan A. Greenblatt, the chief executive of the Anti-Defamation League, told the New York Times it's "hard to fathom" why anyone would keep products featuring a concentration camp inside their home. 

"It is hard to fathom why anyone would want to hang a Christmas ornament adorned with images of a concentration camp," Greenblatt said. "These ornaments are deeply offensive by any measure. We’re relieved that Amazon has removed these items from sale."

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