Jörg W clears up some misunderstandings about the German national anthemn and German policies and attitudes towards Israel:
(1) “Deutschland über alles” (‘Germany above all’) is not the national anthem, but the first stanza of the Deutschlandlied (Song of the Germans) written in 1841.
Because the Nazis misused and reinterpreted the first stanza, Germany’s national anthem consists now only of the third stanza of the Deutschlandlied, i.e. the crowd was singing “Einigkeit und Recht und Freiheit” (‘Unity and rule of law and freedom’).
In fact, singing the first stanza, “Deutschland über alles”, is associated with the Nazis only. It is the Nazi anthem. More background in the box to your right: =>
This means Matthew Beard, the reporter for The Independent, did not listen very well and does not know much about the country he is reporting about. Winds of Change and Instapundit did not notice the mistake, but unintentionally spread it on the internet.
(3) Winds of Change expressed surprise that Germans show solidarity with Israel.
Why wouldn’t we wave Israeli flags to protest against Ahmadinejad? A recent PEW poll found that a higher percentage of Germans than Americans express negative opinions of Iran and oppose the acquirition of nuclear weapons. Another PEW poll concluded three weeks ago:
Germans, in particular, have become much more sympathetic to Israel in its dispute with the Palestinians. Nearly four-in-ten Germans (37%) say they sympathize with Israel in the Mideast conflict compared with 18% who sympathize with the Palestinians. In March 2004, Germans’ sympathies were evenly divided (24% Israel, 24% Palestinians).
The respected German paper Die Welt reported last weekend that Israel will receive two more German submarines, which cost one billion Euro, but the German government is paying 300 million. These submarines increase Israel’s deterrence against Iran by strengthening Israel’s nuclear second-strike capability, enabling Israel to destroy Iran even if Iran would launch a surprise nuclear attack on Israel first