University of Crete revokes doctorate of German academic

28 May 2016
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The Political Science department of the University of Crete has stripped Heinz Richter, former professor of Greek and Cypriot modern history at the University of Mannheim, of an honorary doctorate.The 75-year-old professor was tried by a Greek court for his 2011 book “Operation Mercury: The Invasion of Crete,” in which he addressed what he saw as myths regarding the resistance movement on the island during WWII, marking the first time an individual was being charged under a new Greek anti-racism law.

While Richter was acquitted, the Cretan faculty was irked by comments he made to Kathimerini earlier this month in which he pointed out that if the university revoked his title it would be the second time in history that a German was stripped of such a title, following the case of Thomas Mann whose doctorate was revoked by the Nazi regime.

In a statement, the faculty said the title was based on “established conditions founded on merit” and criticized Richter for his “generalizing derogatory references to history and the people of Crete, in the public domain.”

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