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  • Germany’s History is Ours

    Posted by Ginny on July 5th, 2005 (All posts by )

    Fallaci may worry about the Italian loss of history, we of the American, but Berlin loses, too. And when each loses its own, history in general – all our histories – lose.

    See Gateway Pundit and Sissy Willis. Not surprisingly, David’s Mediankritik is on top of it.

    This is Germany’s problem and the solution will be theirs. Each country decides what is important to them. But what strikes me about this is that their solution is likely to affect Americans as well. When Chris Matthews was still available locally, I remember a remark he made about his trip to Europe with his son. He described their behavior at Hitler’s bunker and then described a Berlin slowly rising from the rubble of WWII. This trip had been in the last few years; his remarks about war-time rubble projected little sense of the importance of the fallen wall, of the 45 years of communist rule. Therefore, there was little sense of the difference in the two systems, of the fact that many had died, the fact that the word “escape” described what happened. Memorials such as the one torn down make history tangible, real–make it unforgettable.

    When Germany forgets, we, too, will. While I agree that “never again” should be fortified with our repugnance at memories of what happened in WWII (on both fronts) and the evil of which men are capable, memories of the long years of the Warsaw Pact also serve us well. (Okay and ironically, the bank’s property rights may be a factor here – but I don’t see an appropriate memorial in the works. Nor do I doubt that the government chose with which breeze to blow here.)


    7 Responses to “Germany’s History is Ours”

    1. -keith in mtn. view Says:

      That’s really too bad, institutional (not virtual) schizophrenia is very destructive. I visited East Berlin and traveled through Checkpoint Charlie to see the bust of Queen Nefertiti at the Ägyptisches Museum.
      It was funny and confusing to see “Die Mauer Muss Weg KPD/ML” written in red on the free side – but while it reflects on the confusion of the Left, I guess that doesn’t reflect well on the seamless unity of passing time that authorities want to project.

    2. Norden Says:

      What was the chain of custody for this land that at one time was firmly under U.S. military control?

      Would these German Vandals also tear down Traquilty base, also negligently out of our legal control, if their dirty, Marxist hands could reach?

    3. Shannon Love Says:

      So, this was an unofficial memorial constructed on private land without the owners permission? While I support the intent of the memorial it seems unjust for the community at large to appropriate someone else’s property for that purpose.

      What is the backstory here?

    4. Ginny Says:

      My son-in-law sees David’s Mediankritik as sometimes unreliable, but that has the most information. Yes, it was the “private initiative” of the director of the “Checkpoint Charlie Museum”, Ms. Alexandra Hildebrandt, who leased the land.

      Mediankritik argues “When, as a last resort, Ms. Hildebrandt offered to buy the land to save the monument, the bank asked for 36 million Euros, a price that, according to Henry Nickel of Republicans Abroad, is far above the actual market value and nothing more than a smokescreen created to frustrate efforts of monument proponents.” Of course, defining the motivations of all involved puts us on shakey ground, as does the fair value.

      However, if Mediankritik is at all right some Germans, especially those with a desire to lose that particular past, prefer to paper over the 1945 to 1990 years. And this distorts the narrative, for us as well as for them.

    5. Ralf Goergens Says:

      If somebody is distorting anything it is David Kaspar. And it’s not the first time, either.

    6. Robert Schwartz Says:

      Having tied ourselves into knots over Kelo, we should not be casting stones at a german lessor who wants his land back from a holdover lesee.

    7. Victor Says:

      I have visited Berlin two times after the reunification and it is very clear the Germans want to whitewash the times of the Russian occupation. Time will come and the history will be rewritten so that “American troops have occupied the German soil for fifty years”.