Medal awarded to Nazi soldier who took five bullets for Hitler fetches

In March the Holocaust Educational Trust called for a review into the sale of Nazi memorabilia – which remains legal in the UK – amid the rise in visible anti-Semitism. It is, however, illegal to sell Nazi memorabilia or items linked to the Holocaust in other European countries such as Germany, France and Austria.  Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. “The Nazis were walking to a monument that honoured the Bavarian Army when they met a police cordon across the road.”Karen Pollock MBE, chief executive of the Holocaust Educational Trust, suggested that regulation was needed to prohibit the sale of Nazi memorabilia and criticised the comments.She told The Telegraph: “It has long been our view that it is not appropriate for items like this to be on the market for personal profit or macabre interest but rather placed in archives, museums or in an educational context.”“Several leading auction houses and online sites already rightly refuse to sell such material and many countries have banned the sale of Nazi memorabilia. Perhaps it is time for clearer regulation on the sale of these items here in the UK.” A medal awarded to a Nazi soldier who took five bullets meant for Adolf Hitler has sold for a “world record” price.The Blutorden Blood Order Medal was awarded to Ulrich Graf, who helped protect Hitler when he tried to seize power in Bavaria in November 1923 – an event known as The Beer Hall Putsch.The item fetched nine times its £3,500-£4,000 asking price at auction after selling for £36,500 at Derbyshire-based Hansons Auctioneers’ Militaria Auction on July 26.However, the auction house was criticised after saying that banning the sale of Nazi memorabilia would do a “disservice” to Holocaust victims.Adrian Stevenson, a militaria expert at Hansons auctioneers, said: “It’s a world-record price for a medal of its type – a phenomenal result. Interest in this medal was high right from the start. It’s a remarkable historical piece with a huge story to tell.”We know that in the 1950s Ulrich Graf’s family sold everything of his. They wanted no connection with his Nazi past.” He added: “Our vendor was a British doctor who had a large collection of German Third Reich medals which are among the most popular genres of medals.”Some countries like France ban the sale of Third Reich but I think that does a disservice to the victims of the Nazis, it is almost like sweeping it under the carpet. Karen Pollock MBE, Chief Executive of the Holocaust Educational Trust, has called for a review into the sale of Nazi memorabilia Ulrich Graf, seen right of centre, alongside the Fuhrer at an event commemorating the Beer Hall Putsch, 15 years later, in 1938Credit:Hugo Jaeger/Timepix/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images After the buyer’s premium and VAT were added to the overall price, the figure paid by the private overseas buyer was £47,450.The silver medal, which features the Nazi eagle on one side and an image of the Munich monument on the other, was given to Graf after he threw himself on Hitler and survived after being shot.The former wrestler, who was one of the earliest members of the Nazi Party after it was founded in 1920, was one of Hitler’s personal protection squad during the battle – which ended with 16 party members and four officers killed. Karen Pollock MBE, Chief Executive of the Holocaust Educational Trust, has called for a review into the sale of Nazi memorabiliaCredit:Tele/Tele A spokeswoman for Hansons said: “We fully respect and understand Karen Pollock’s viewpoint. However, we also fully respect the historical importance of the objects we sell. It’s impossible to ignore history or brush away the past. This item was sold purely as an historical object.”Militaria items are collected worldwide by people who have a passionate interest in wartime history. Museums or educational establishments are free to obtain these items if they wish.” Top Nazi Party members march in remembrance of 1923 Beer Hall Putsch, Munich, Germany, November 9, 1938 read more

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