Anne Frank Proposed as Name for German Train

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October 31, 2017

The operator of Germany's state rail system has proposed the idea of naming a train after Anne Frank, the young Holocaust victim whose diary has been read around the world. The response to that proposal has not been universal acclaim.

Most prominent of the critics of the proposal is the Anne Frank House, which was once the Amsterdam house where Anne and her family hid from the Gestapo but is now a museum. Officials there said that the proposal evoked great pain in reminding people of the way that the Frank family–and so many people like them– died. A great many Jewish and other enemies of the Nazi state were sent to concentration camps aboard trains.

Deutsche Bahn, the train operator, said it planned to name one of its new high-speed trains after Frank as a memorial to her. That idea found favor with many people who echoed that sentiment.

Deutshce Bahn had originally sought suggestions from the public; more than 2,500 different names featured among the 19,400 total submissions. A panel of experts, including two historians, chose a shortlist of 25 people whose names will feature on a number of new Inter City Express trains.

Among the other names on the shortlist are famed physicist Albert Einstein and Konrad Adenauer, Germany's first postwar chancellor.

A final decision is to be announced in December.

Anne Frank is in the name of 267 schools in 18 countries around the world. Also named after her around the world are streets, parks, and memorials.

It doesn't stop at Earth's atmosphere. An asteroid discovered in 1942 is named after her: 5535 Annefrank.

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