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Date Posted: 09:37:25 10/14/04 Thu
Author: Shane
Subject: Re: German Politics and Culture
In reply to: Chris 's message, "Re: German Politics and Culture" on 16:32:19 10/13/04 Wed

Do you think there could ever be another war in Europe? If you could give an objective answer, how do Germans view Ronald Reagan?

>>I would like to know how Germany has changed since
>>WWII. How do the politics lean? What long term effect
>>did WWII have on German culture and politics? How do
>>Germans view European Union and the rest of Europe?
>Some thoughts from a very tired German who should be
>in bed already. Hope they make sense.
>WWII was a strong incision in German history. Before
>WWII Germany was leading in science and culture. The
>significant scientific publications were written in
>German, not in English as today. The leading
>scientists came from Germany, like Einstein,
>Heisenberg, Planck. Many of them were Jews and were
>all dispelled or killed at the time of WWII. Germany
>had a long history of scientists like Gauss, Leibnitz,
>Mendel, Koch, musicians like Bach, Mozart, Beethoven,
>Schumann, philosophers like Kant, Hegel, Nietzsche,
>Schopenhauer, poets like Goethe, Schiller, Lessing,
>Möricke. Germany was known as the "Land der Dichter
>und Denker," the country of poets and thinkers, the
>land of humanism. In shorts, we Germans believed we
>were the most civilized, cultured and intellectual
>nation in the world. Therefore, we were very proud and
>nationalistic. Our national anthem started with
>"Deutschland, Deutschland über alles" (Germany,
>Germany above all). This was probably meant in the
>sense that the poet loved Germany above all, but the
>Nazis interpreted it the way that Germany should rule
>over all.
>Then came WWII. The problem was not the war. The
>problem was Hitler. The Germans had to realize that
>the whole nation had followed this small, ugly and
>devilish man like he had been the Messiah, that they
>had participated in and caused a completely senseless
>world war and most of all torturing and killing
>millions of innocent Jews, systematic mass murder as
>the world had not seen before.
>Of course, this was a shock. It humbled us a lot.
>Nationalistic feeligns and ideas are now suspect in
>Germany. Aside from the phenomenon of Neonazis
>particularly in East Germany, the majority of Germans
>have no patriotic or nationalistic feelings as
>Americans have. Singing the first verse of the
>national anthem is frowned upon and maybe even
>forbidden. We have many foreigners in our country, we
>call it a "multi-culti" (multi cultural) society.
>We view us as a core part of the European Union. We
>love and know our European neighbours. Germans like to
>make holidays in Spain, Italy, France, but also
>Holland, Scandinavia or Turkey. Germans like to eat in
>Italian or Greek restaurants more than in German
>restaurants; and Turkish fast food (doener kebap) has
>already got ahead of German (curry sausages) and
>American (hamburgers).
>I have the feeling that my answer is a bit strange and
>I have to go to bed. But actually, your questions are
>difficult to answer, and I could write many pages.

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