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Lauder urges German railway: Teach passengers on future ‘Anne Frank’ train Holocaust history

NEW YORK – Following reports that Germany’s national railway plans to name a high-speed train after Anne Frank, World Jewish Congress President Ronald S. Lauder urged Deutsche Bahn to contextualize its decision and provide passengers of the ICE with information about its predecessor company’s role in the deportation of Jews during the Holocaust.

In a letter to Deutsche Bahn AG CEO Richard Lutz, Lauder wrote that the railway’s decision to include the young Holocaust victim among its list of influential Germans “was initially met with some resistance, not least because Anne Frank was deported by the trains of the Reichsbahn to Auschwitz.

“In my opinion, it would therefore be appropriate for the passengers of the ICE “Anne Frank” to be informed about this part of the history of your predecessor company,” Lauder wrote. “For example, this could be done by telling the fate of Anne Frank in train schedules on the trains, or in separate leaflets, and creating a context for naming the ICE after her.”

“This is particularly important in the present case, because Anne Frank cannot simply be honored as a ‘great German.’ Rather, this naming represents the six million Jews who were murdered by Germans during the Nazi era,” Lauder added.

“It would be important that Deutsche Bahn makes this clear in its external communications,” the WJC president concluded.

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