A scale model of a fictional Nazi flying saucer has been removed from sale after the controversial product faced harsh criticism from German historians and child protection groups.
The scale plastic model, entitled ‘Flying Saucer Haunebu II,’ has been sold on Amazon for €49.99 since May. But the model’s producer, Revell, announced on Tuesday that it has removed the model from its stock due to “criticism in recent days.”
German historians were angry with the misleading description of the made-up aircraft in the manual, which presented it as a real historical one. Revell called Haunebu II “an aircraft from the World War II era,” claiming that its air-capable prototypes were developed in mid-1943, but that their tests couldn’t be carried out due to the conflict.
Jens Wehner, a historian from the Military History Museum in Dresden, has decried the model as “dangerous nonsense.” Attributing the Nazis the capabilities that they never possessed is “unacceptable,” Wehner told NDR broadcaster.
He was backed by political scientist Dierk Borstel, who said that items that “promote Nazi legends or indirectly support right-wing conspiracy theories” should not be put on sale.
The German Child Protection Association was also concerned that the toy, which has the insignias of Luftwaffe, Nazi Germany’s aerial warfare branch, on it, would find its way into the hands of the children. “As a child protection association, we generally reject toys that can lead to ideologization,” federal managing director Cordula Lasner-Tietze told NDR.
Revell spokesperson told Interfax that “the product wasn’t intended for kids as it was wrongly reported by the media, but for grown up scale model collectors.” However, she acknowledged that “the text on the product was incorrect and the indication of the age range was misleading,” adding that the “company reacted and won’t sell the product anymore.”
Haunebu II by Ravell is currently unavailable on Amazon, but the website still sells the model of the same mythical Nazi saucer from another producer.
Some conspiracy theories have linked WWII-era UFO sightings to a secret flying saucer program of the Third Reich. Despite not being backed by facts, those claims have found reflection in pop culture, with numerous sci-fi novels, movies and video games depicting Nazi flying saucer bases in Antarctica or on the Moon.
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