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tv   Quadriga - Living in Fear How Anti- Semitic is Germany  Deutsche Welle  January 26, 2018 9:30am-10:00am CET

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learn german with. any time any place. with a judge will enter finds i need stuff to delete. we friends all over the world. online and interactive. german to go and. learn german for three d. w. . hello and welcome to quadriga this saturday is international holocaust remembrance day the murder of more than six million jews by the nazi regime is a defining fact of germany's post-war identity and the country has worked to confront it yet anti-semitic attacks are on the rise in germany the political
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dissent of the right wing nationalist party now represented in parliament is provoking deep concern among germans and in jewish communities so too is the recent influx of muslim immigrants a recent study by the american jewish committee quit his berlin high school after suffering mobbing and abuse at the hands of turkish classmates living in fear how anti-semitic is germans in germany and the fears and prejudices they evoke she says germany needs a more inclusive memorial culture and more backbone in the fight against all forms of marginalization and we're very pleased to have alan posner on the show once again he's a commentator for the daily newspaper he says jews everywhere are held responsible for every real or imagined injustice perpetrated by israel and finally very glad to welcome. you to. the show he's the director of human rights watch and he has
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experienced the problem we're talking about first hand he says anti-semitism in germany is escalating and increasingly normalized and the state is responding too slowly. it was indeed your son who suffered the abuse that i referred to at the opening of the show would you tell us a little bit about what happened there. yeah he was new at the school and at the end of the first week a teacher asked what kind of world religions do you guys know and what kind of houses of worship so the students. mosque and then it was my son's turn and he said cynical and teach us are you jewish and he said yes and that is when everything started to take started and what exactly was everything. started with verbal abuse and bullying and but then also physical effects he was
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beaten very badly shows hands of the students that this and he was also there was a mock execution and that was the point when we took him out of the school roughly three months later other students according to many newspaper reports especially arab and turkish fellow students is that correct in this case it is correct mostly turkish and also arabs and he was not the only one who was bullied kurdish black gay students and girls were also. badly abused at the school did nothing but in his case because he was jewish it was extreme it was even worse because they didn't beat up other kids now your opening statement indicates that you definitely don't see this as an isolated phenomenon and yet the government's anti-semitism report. more or less quoting here comes to the conclusion that in comparison with any other time before world war two or
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thereafter open anti-semitism has rarely been less tolerated by the broad majority of society than today so how do you reconcile that statement with what your child experienced well firstly we germans. how to oncet questions about and to semitism no joke. would say i'm anti-semitic or i hate jews so people find their learned in rituals in remembrance day and all this how to how to answer these questions so they don't appear and to semitic but they are i mean the fact that the. message went off the school the mosque didn't do anything to protect my son even off the we asked him again and again shows. a pretty big resentment against jews because otherwise this person would have been alarmed or the whole school or in fact also the police people who were politically
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responsible for the school and we have learned from the people from other schools in dissolute off in plea and on foot munich and so on for similar incidents because not all people because in public now people come out and talk about it. the same report that i just quoted from the german government although it admits that attitudes are says the attitudes of months the province already haven't changed it does admit that there is increased anti-semitic activity in the words of the report in terms of propaganda verbal and physical abuse so what exactly is going on there are we seeing a minority on the margins of society that feels increasingly empowered to act out. bears that. this is you know and to some it is a multi-factorial thing and stupid to say that but it's true their. use of if you
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like traditional real anti semites who somehow may feel emboldened by the internet from social media then the new and to some might say call themselves anti globalists who. situated within these so-called alternative for germany this new party to never say they're against jews but it's always the east coast the capitalists and then it's goldman sachs or whatever and somehow it all boils down to the old enemy and then there is something which is on the left and in muslim muslim community which is designed ism and ever since nine hundred sixty seven you know the sixty eight as my generation they were so proud they said well we confronted our parents about what they did in the nazi past that is true up to a point but then they turned around and supported arab terrorism against israel they wrote you know the the red army faction actually trained in palestinian terror camps and so on and since then it's sort of
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a given if you're on the left that you're critical of israel there's you know there's no accept the fact that israel is the only democracy that gays lesbians and so on queers. transgender people you know it's and so this all comes together these three aspects christian however would you agree are we seeing a rise in intolerance generally and particular in. i think what has really changed is the clients in germany of public discussion of private discussions a lot of things are being set that would have been impossible ten years ago fifteen years ago and this doesn't go only for anti jewish resentments but it goes for anything that is considered different that is considered any end to german somehow . we have this growing fear sentiment of everything should stay as it is germans are one nation and they look like this and they act like this and whoever comes
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here has to the act like this and this kind of assimilation so it goes not only against jews who goes especially against muslims right now this is like if you read sometimes texts of nowadays if you replace the word was lin with jewish it gets really frightening to me you know we have this kind of stigmatization that always is the beginning of further development to more violent reactions towards minorities the stigmatization of my own minorities this is a big problem inside germany i want to talk about what effects that changing climate has and we have a short film about that in recent years berlin has actually seen something of the rebirth of jewish life but could this increasingly be perceived as a less than welcoming place we can listen now to the voices of benson the shas these children interviewed for a film called because you're a jew what they were showing on t w. i always felt it was better not to say i'm
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jewish. really yeah i don't see it that way. oh yeah i hardly told anyone. not at university either. and i don't keep quiet about it because to me that would feel like it's something i should be ashamed about it was even if that's not how it is for use as if it were secret and assist i know i'm jewish. my kitchen discuss their problem this is the image my. has the mobbing experience that your son went through change to the children's attitude and if you look toward the young israelis who in the past years have been coming to berlin with great alacrity would you say to those thinking about coming better stay away no i wouldn't say better stay away but i would say brace yourself be aware. to what
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kind of city and what kind of country you're coming to and look really carefully which area you want to live but i think most israelis who are coming to germany are wealthy sings a kind of medicine anybody from all countries in the world that want to resettle to germany that they haven't thought about that but your own kids have their attitudes changed. i don't think their attitudes have changed because they were always aware of this my daughter as we have seen says iraq a high being jewish she's studying in england and england especially at the universities there is a very lively and to some it isn't at the moment and my son studies in the us and there's not such a big problem with that system it is so they see it from their own point of view but it has changed my son my wife and me and my parents ferry much we see the
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country now with different us your cat parents of course being holocaust survivors yes alan posner let's talk about the link which you mentioned between criticism of israel and anti-semitism where and when does the one begin to shade into the other and would you say given germany's crimes that german simply should refrain from criticizing israel altogether oh of course not. israel is a country like every other so it's a country which makes mistakes maybe. commits crimes. and these can be criticised the thing is there's a there's a word in germany called is square kotick one word right which means criticism of israel is not no such thing as how we say critic or french marketing you know it's only ng and at the jewish state and a state which declares itself jewish and if you ask where does it change over
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there's a very clear definition which has been accepted by the european committee european community and by the german government and this is it's the three d's demonization deal at your demise ation and double standards if you hold israel to a higher standard than you would another country in that critical security situation if you demonize israel as being some kind of apartheid state if you diva just in my eyes that by saying you know we're going to boycott academics from your country which you don't do with regard to china or russia or other countries this is where israel could take becomes anti semitism obviously. criticism of israel was much in evidence at a demonstration in december that was amongst the incidents fueling fear of a rise in anti-semitism in germany let's take a look. at a demonstration that took place in berlin after donald trump's announcement that
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the u.s. would move its embassy to jerusalem pro palestinian demonstrators chanted death to israel and burned israeli flags. now christian helberg at those proper protest cameras did capture young men of arab origin sitting on each other's shoulders and shouting and shouting a recent report from the american jewish committee i mentioned it briefly earlier document some pretty egregious expressions of anti-semitism among arab immigrants in germany so your opening statement says that backbone is needed but what kind of backbone is needed here in this case are arab immigrants who've come in the past couple of years part of the reason we're seeing this trend to greater intolerance there's a big problem of. among arabs or took fish youngsters i fully agree but we have to
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make an important difference between people who were born here a second or third generation young people will race to you who went to germany schools and who should have known some political rules and some self understandings of germans not only concern and to say what is he but what is written in the very german constitution that nobody should be a privileged or should be. neglected for his religious. for his religion or ethnic. background so the the other story is refugees who have come here during the past two years for example from syria in syria there is a political problem with israel is until now. occupying the syrian golan heights so syrians have learned all their lives that israel is the enemy and that it should be fought against so this is the narrative that these young people come to germany with and this cannot be changed easily in some integration course this needs time
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and they have other problems when they come here because there's a lot of problems about integration and finding work in the in the language but what really really is a big problem for me is when people who grew up here and have went to german schools still have this entity so it is the medic but come on and t. muslim and she against everything that is considered to be. different that is a big problem for me and there we have fate and we have a structural problem problem inside germany among germans or original value will be will germans and people with migration background and we have to confront this by different means maybe as well by a different culture of for member of the holocaust i want to come in just a moment to the culture of remembers but let me just ask you would you say that america's open door policy has in fact paved the way for this rise in anti-semitism and have we in a way imported the middle east conflict right here into the heart of germany. well
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first question i would say not all the people we've seen here demonstrating most of the people who came here a long time ago politicize their activists hamas is behind those people we see them in regular basis on anti israeli demonstrations here in berlin and i mean you know we germans have to grow up that these people are here in germany and we have to deal with this. but what we haven't dealt with is. actually in schools educating. young. muslims in a smart way how them and muslims and. muslims and mostly those of german muslims to to see this i mean most muslims because they were born already interim they have so the call of some conservative. party members here in germany to expel all
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foreign muslims is very shortsighted because it puts the finger only on a certain group which we have to deal with of course but which does not represent all the muslims in germany. also does the effort to educate has of course been part of an effort here in germany to come to terms to confront the crime of the holocaust there is even a special word for it forgotten in height the vent take on confrontation with the past and one example of that fair gun fights began to go is the culture of remembrance including a monument that remembers the holocaust just a few kilometers from here. the memorial to the murdered jews of europe it took a good twenty five years for the plans to be brought to completion. its location and berlin's government district is perhaps the most visible indication of
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germany's intent to face up to its history. unobtrusive in contrast are what are called stumbling stones they reflect the everyday horrors of the nazi era and commemorate jews who were deported murdered or driven out tens of thousands have been placed all across germany and europe making them the world's largest decentralized memorial. and then there are the places of horror themselves such as auschwitz today it's a memorial site that makes the nazis machine of genocidal destruction tangible to visitors what is the right form of remembrance. posner the former german president. said to two years ago there is no german identity without auschwitz remembering the holocaust remains a concern for all citizens who live in germany but can we really expect migrants to
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germany to share that view and also perhaps very young germans who say hey that's ago. well there's just two aspects to this. the first aspect is this is not a german question the holocaust was and remains. something that that is that is important for every person everywhere in the world whether you're a german whether you're a jew whether you're a german jew whether you're a german muslim whether you're an american if they have a holocaust memorial in washington d.c. why they have a heart of caused a museum in los angeles why because this is something which we all need to think about so it's not a question of can we expect sort of my grandchildren to take responsibility given that you know that the great grandfather was a jews of course we can can respect young muslims of course we can't because every human being needs to understand that this kind you know this crime is something that must not happen again which leads us again to israel if
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you're talking about israel has no right to exist you're talking about denying six million people the right to exist which is precisely what the holocaust was about the need to make this connection that's the second problem because people talk about the holocaust yeah well it must never happen again was not going to happen again like that it's going to happen with an iranian missile on tel aviv it's going to happen we you know with with with jews being with the synagogues being burned by arabs here in germany is going to happen in a different way and we need to make that connection if we have to disconnect a little bit from this criticizing it's what i know you think it's possible and it is necessary to kind of disconnect. it's where the jews went because the germans threw them out they didn't kill them so this is. part of holocaust remembrance is supporting israel is no wait you cannot but then it's very difficult for people for example come from syria and hope to see if israel as an enemy and if you talk about
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palestinians were being occupied and who are being taken their rights from by this very state of israel if to criticize this this not must be possible by and this and it's not so easy to say you know that. you could take is equal to and to say much as it is equal to an eye on it you know for me we have to by mixing up these things this makes it more fluid look bill if i have to i have to honestly i'm perfectly should visit with a palestinian who says i lost my my grandparents was their home and so on and and i can't be expected to like israel but when he says we're going to go back one day and this is going to be part of palestine with the with the flag and the jews you know who do you as if they are going to be gone then i say they are just really sorry they say it all the time may i just interrupt here because i would like to come back to the culture of remembrance and ask you. after those december protests that we saw the pictures of there were calls from a number of people for there to be mandatory visits to remembrance sites such as
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concentration camps for those young muslims in germany you said we have a problem particularly with young muslim men including young muslim men who have been here for quite some time would that be a good idea would that make a difference anything men dettori with teenagers will not work that's a very important point i think it would be very good if people come to the point that they would like to go there to confront the sister and i very much agree with mr posner that this is not a german thing that it's an international unhistorical an international scale a crime against humanity and it has to be remembered like this and this is the big chance for me if we consider this part of german identity then we have to make it more inclusive for whatever lives in germany. base germany has changed germany is an immigration country it's supposed to be an integration country so we have to talk in schools in a different way about the holocaust and shouldn't be just a chapter in the history class but it should be connected with what happened in the
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middle east after that's what at that time was going on there how did people all regimes position themselves to this what was the outcome of this holocaust in europe concerning palestinians and their being you know. fourteen and being pulled out of expelled from their country so by by connecting this with other countries to make it more international the way of talking about it we keep it as one important pillar for german identity events and what do you think needs to happen the former head of the central council of jews in germany has called for the federal government to create a new authority that would monitor and defend against the rise of anti-semitism as we said there have been calls for mandatory visits to concentration camps what steps do you think need to be taken now here in germany i think the fact that we will have a special envoy special on and to submit is now is
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a good step in the right direction. the other subject i must say that we are very good in germany in remembering and creating the more real we are world champions but the danger is that we have a hidden our present day and to some it isn't that still there. under those memorials we have to deal much more with present day and to some it isn't and the and to simitis off those people who would who regard themselves as anti semitic semitics and or anti racists because that is sometimes just a label and under the surface boiling so how how would you want to do that what you do for example with a show with a school director who clearly didn't get what was going on in his school. yeah i think there has to be accountability this guy is still the director off the school
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and what can happen to him the worst can happen that he is transferred to another school then the people have to deal with that though there has to be a accountability and the schools and the teachers they have to be put pat and trained to deal with those problems and they are not at the moment and they just put their head in the sand and that's it let me briefly come back to our title and ask for all of you in one word if you look at the rest of europe and the rest of the world how anti-semitic is germany because of the middling. i think it's not more than the rest of the on top of the bad enough. i think that's actually one of the question the question is how is germany dealing with the existing as much as right now for doesn't matter. and not well enough according to you thank you very much shock to all three of you for being with us today and thanks to all of you for tuning in please do watch the film because your job as we are showing and thanks so
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p w news live from bird land and being germany's political limbo chancellor angela merkel's conservatives on the social democrats finally start formal talks to forge a new government a full four months after september the election can they deliver and brown's coalition. plus turkey pushes ahead.


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