Tag: West Germany

The German election was a pyrrhic victory for Angela Merkel. She has just enough seats to pull together a new coalition with the Free Democrats and the Green Party. However, the rise of the Alternative for Deutschland, and the loss of the SPD as a junior partner, means Merkel will triangulate further to the right on the refugee question. (More…)

Going into the German elections the consensus is that Angela Merkel will once again be reinstated and the grand coalition reconstituted. Many people are taking refuge in the status quo given the instability in the world today. But this election result didn’t look so certain at the start of 2017. (More…)

I’ve been reading Alexander Sedlmaier’s Consumption and Violence: Radical Protest in Cold War West Germany. I picked it up after seeing it in the Cambridge University Press catalog, and only subsequently did I realize that I’d seen Sedlmaier give quite an interesting presentation at a German Studies Association conference in New Orleans long ago. (More…)

This is a peculiar moment in American culture. Slavery doesn’t trouble the psyche of this country in normal times. Although it was a key element on which much of the wealth of the United States was once based, the history of slavery is typically viewed as the prehistory of the Emancipation Proclamation. But a spate of recent publications has pushed the issue to a new level of prominence. (More…)

On a visit to Israel in 2008, German Chancellor Angela Merkel spoke before the Knesset. “The historical responsibility for Israel’s security is part of Germany’s raison d’être,” she said. During her most recent visit, in February, on which she was accompanied by nearly her entire cabinet, Merkel was awarded Israel’s highest civilian honor for “standing by Israel” and fighting against anti-Semitism and racism. (More…)

One of the important tasks of the on-going project of Never Again for Anyone, including our own to take place in Berlin during the Holocaust’s 70th anniversary, is to highlight the danger of a resurgence of violent far-right activity in Europe. As a German resident, I think the most notable example in recent times is undoubtedly the case of the National Socialist Underground (NSU). (More…)

Who could argue with such a simple request? “1 Euro for education”, the sign reads, advertising IKEA’s ongoing commitment to donate that amount to Save the Children with the purchase of each soft toy. But given the context, it’s hard not to read the message as a disturbing double entendre. (More…)

Did the Allies liberate Europe from Fascism? Many leftists would say no. In West Germany, for example, Nazi-era civil servants, judges and police officers remained in place for nearly three more decades. The same could be said of France, not to mention, of course, Italy. Why? For the Allies, quite often, due to pragmatism. How would they run these countries without them? (More…)

When the Simon Wiesenthal Center published its 2012 Top Ten Anti-Semitic/Anti-Israel Slurs list, it comprised many obvious figures. #1 was Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, which has routinely called for Jewry’s destruction. The apposite quality of this designation was further illustrated when comments made by Mohammed Morsi came to light, in which he described Zionists as “bloodsuckers.” (More…)

2012 was a year of rude awakenings in Germany. The revelations surrounding the National Socialist Underground terror cell, which had been allowed to murder at least ten people (nine of which were minorities,) were followed by even more disturbing indications of incompetence on the part of the security services tasked with policing them. (More…)