The Germany canoeing team were left ‘appalled’ after organisers at the Canoe Sprint World Championships in Hungary played the banned ‘Nazi anthem’ at a medal ceremony.
Anne Knorr and Debora Nich won gold for Germany in the 1000 meters K2 women’s final race but after receiving their medals they were shocked to hear the Germany anthem played with the verse “Deutschland, Deutschland über alles / Über alles in der Welt,” (“Germany, Germany above all / Above everything in the world,”)
The music for the German national anthem was composed in 1797 by Joseph Haydn with lyrics written by Hoffmann von Fallersleben in 1841.
The verse beginning “Deutschland, Deutschland über alles” is the first stanza of the piece but was banned in 1952 as those were the lyrics adopted by the Nazis when singing the anthem.
Since then it is the third stanza that has been used which begins “Einigkeit und Recht und Freiheit / Für das deutsche Vaterland!” (Unity and justice and freedom / For the German fatherland!)
“I ​​am appalled. We cannot accept it,” German national coach Rainer Kiessler said in a television interview.
Kiessler added that Hungarian organizers refused to let him verify the anthem before playing it due to a “technical problem.”
German forces occupied Hungary during World War II in 1944 after Adolf Hitler discovered the country had engaged in secret peace negotiations with the United States and the United Kingdom, despite having been a member of the Axis powers that fought against the Allies.