The inability to accept the past by Japanese leaders stands in stark contrast to Germany’s clear acknowledgment of its responsibility for the Holocaust. The deep layers of reconciliation Germany developed with France, Poland, Israel, and the Czech Republic stand in contrast to Japan’s apologies to its neighbors, which have been thin, intermittent, and devoid of follow-up in bilateral policies toward China and South Korea that show a genuine desire to make amends. Germany’s experience—apologize, offer compensation, build other relationship—can serve as a guideline for continuing reconciliation in East Asia.

The AICGS Society, Culture & Politics Program focuses on how cultural beliefs and values, evolving interpretations of historical experiences, and shifting conceptions of national identity all shape perspectives and policy responses in the German-American dialogue. The program has three main areas of focus: Reconciliation in Europe and Asia looks to Germany for lessons for Japan’s …Read More

A Collection from This Week’s News on Important Issues for German-American Relations Geoeconomics The decline of the Swiss private bank (The Financial Times) China’s ghost in Europe’s telecom machine (Politico) Draghi dragging up the rear (Handelsblatt) U.S. criticizes Germany’s support of new Russian natural gas line (The Wall Street Journal) Foreign and Domestic Policy ‘One …Read More

“States cannot be tried before foreign courts because of their sovereign activity, for example, the actions of their soldiers,” claims Minister of Justice of the state of Berlin, Dirk Behrendt, in his justification not to deliver the U.S. statement of claim to the federal government in the case of a class-action lawsuit against the Federal …Read More

After World War II, various discourses emerged that assigned the “youth” and the “young generation” to an important role for the material and mental reconstruction of the postwar societies. These discourses partly referred back to interwar traditions and concepts of the international youth movement; partly they emerged out of the specific postwar situation that was …Read More

Since the end of World War II, the partnership between the U.S. and European countries, built on common security/economic interests and shared values, such as democracy, liberty, rule of law, and human rights, has played a pivotal role in the stability of global security and economy and the establishment of the liberal world order. However, …Read More

A Collection from This Week’s News on Important Issues for German-American Relations Geoeconomics US rejects China’s bid for ‘market economy’ status (Wall Street Journal) Euro zone reform: Weak or not, Berlin can still say ‘Nein’ (Handelsblatt) As OPEC extends output cuts, Asia turns to North America for more oil (Reuters) Foreign and Domestic Policy US …Read More

We should learn from this story of the Shanghai Jews. But we haven’t learned.

Between 1904 and 1908, over 100 000 people were killed in the first genocide of the twentieth century.[1]  Only 20 percent of the Herero and about 50 percent of the Nama survived the mass extermination committed under German colonial rule in today’s Namibia. The German government has never officially recognized the genocide as such.  It …Read More

In 2012, the short documentary “Kony 2012” by the NGO Invisible Children created a social media blitz and massive public support for intervention against the warlord Joseph Kony in Uganda. Partially as a result of the public attention, the U.S. Senate passed a resolution to support the African Union in a military intervention against Kony. …Read More

Relations between Asian countries are influenced by historical consciousness. The expression of that consciousness, which is extremely politicized in Asia, plays an important role in building or destroying modern relationships.

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