Friday, March 30, 2007

German Update

[posted by Callimachus]

More here on that Sharia divorce case in German courts, which Reader brought to our attention a couple weeks ago. It's an extensive piece, but I haven't had time to compare it to the earlier report, which some of us questioned.

Also in Spiegel: Fifty-seven percent of young Germans (age 18 to 29) said in a recent poll they consider the United States more dangerous than Iran. Claus Christian Malzahn, Berlin bureau chief for Spiegel Online, is appalled:

For us Germans, the Americans are either too fat or too obsessed with exercise, too prudish or too pornographic, too religious or too nihilistic. In terms of history and foreign policy, the Americans have either been too isolationist or too imperialistic. They simply go ahead and invade foreign countries (something we Germans, of course, would never do) and then abandon them, the way they did in Vietnam and will soon do in Iraq.

It's an indignant editorial, but it's hardly typical for the magazine. The problem, as Ray D. also notices, is that "Neither Malzahn nor [Katja] Gloger [writing in a similar vein in Stern] address the key role German media, particularly SPIEGEL and Stern, have played in drastically raising the level of anti-Americanism in Germany over the past several years."

In that sense they and their colleagues remain - (Thomas Kleine Brockhoff comes to mind) - in a deep "state of denial." Introspection and self-criticism are painful - but to ignore the horrific malpractice and anti-Americanism in German media over the past several years is, in a sense, to play the audience for fools.

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