BERLIN — Most countries celebrate the best in their pasts. Germany unrelentingly promotes its worst.
The enormous Holocaust memorial that dominates a chunk of central Berlin was completed only after years of debate. But the building of monuments to the Nazi disgrace continues unabated.
On Monday, Germany’s minister of culture, Bernd Neumann, announced that construction could begin in Berlin on two monuments: one near the Reichstag, to the murdered Gypsies, known here as the Sinti and the Roma; and another not far from the Brandenburg Gate, to gays and lesbians killed in the Holocaust.
“Where in the world has one ever seen a nation that erects memorials to immortalize its own shame?” asked Avi Primor, the former Israeli ambassador to Germany, at an event in Erfurt on Friday commemorating the Holocaust and the liberation of Auschwitz. “Only the Germans had the bravery and the humility.”
Spiegel誌のオンライン国際版の記事は、建立決定に至るまでの紆余曲折を伝えているほか、"Initiative to Commemorate the Homosexual Victims of the Nazis"というグループのリーダーの発言として「遅すぎた」としている。さらに…
Still, even when both memorials are finished, it is hard not to wonder if more are on the way. A group representing those imprisoned and sentenced to death for deserting the German army is also interested in a memorial. The Third Reich likewise persecuted Jehovah's Witnesses as a group and also killed thousands of handicapped people. None of those groups have a prominent place in central Berlin.