Archive/File: people/h/hitler.adolf/press memorial-at-lair Greens want war memorial at Hitler's hideaway BONN, April 5 (Reuter) - Germany's Green Party demanded on Wednesday that Adolf Hitler's former Alpine hideaway be turned into a memorial to the victims of Nazi horrors to prevent it becoming a shrine for neo-Nazis. The wealthy southern state of Bavaria said in February it would keep control over the ``Eagle's Nest'' on the Obersalzberg mountain in Berchtesgaden after the United States army closes its recreation centre there this year. ``The Obersalzberg threatens to become through the back door a shrine to Nazi megalomania,'' Greens deputy Gerald Haefner wrote in a letter to Bavarian premier Edmund Stoiber. ``Berchtesgaden must not be allowed to become a pilgrimage destination for old and new Nazis.'' The U.S. army has used the Eagle's Nest, Hitler's mountaintop summer resort where he met British prime minister Neville Chamberlain in 1938, as a winter sports centre and golf course since World War Two. But in February it announced its closure due to the sharp cuts in U.S. forces in Europe since the end of the Cold War. Bonn originally pledged 30 million marks ($22 million) to help renovate the Berchtesgaden site to keep it from the public property market. But it then pulled out of the project. Haefner said in his letter to Stoiber that the idyllic site showed few signs of the ``rule of terror'' that once emanated from it and that Bavaria should take pains to illustrate its past to visitors clearly. ``I demand the establishment of a memorial to the victims of the Nazis, the establishment of a documentation centre and the publication and distribution of information brochures devoted to telling the truth,'' he said. Bavaria had pledged to keep control of the site in order to ensure it was not misused. In the heyday of the Third Reich, Hitler, his secretary Martin Bormann, propaganda chief Joseph Goebbels and Luftwaffe head Hermann Goering all had sumptuous villas in the grounds. They were mostly destroyed in a British bombing raid in 1945. A small part of the remaining complex is open to the public and about 400,000 tourists visit it annually. Some occasionally leave behind graffiti like ``The Fuehrer lives on in our hearts'' and ``Death to Jews'' or swastikas scrawled onto the walls. The main attraction is the villa presented to Hitler by the Nazi party on his 50th birthday. The terrace where he was often photographed with his mistress Eva Braun and visiting statesmen is now a restaurant with a breathtaking view of the Alps.
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