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.

In a period of intense global conflicts, attention turns to what comes after war and instability and whether the world should be trying to prepare for peace. Germany is often cited as an example of a country that transformed after World War II and the Holocaust from deep enmity with its victims to profound amity …Read More

Yeon Jeong Gu

Yeon Jeong Gu is a Harry & Helen Gray/AICGS Reconciliation Fellow in August and September 2016. She is a Research Fellow at the Institute for German Language, Literature and Culture at Seoul National University, focusing on German culture and literature in the twentieth century, especially remembrance literature of post-memory generation, urban renewal projects in Germany …Read More

Nina Janz

Nina Janz is a Harry & Helen Gray/AICGS Reconciliation Fellow from August 1 to September 15, 2016. While at AICGS, she will investigate the historical dialogue and the peacemaking process between Germany and Russia seventy years after World War II. Under the slogan “Reconciliation over the Graves” the German War Graves Commission (Volksbund Deutsche Kriegsgräberfürsorge …Read More

Ivo Plsek

Ivo Plšek’s research falls into the field of memory and reconciliation studies. He is interested in how nation-states deal with negative national histories and what factors influence this policy area most. Specifically, he compares Japanese and German political elites and their approach to World War II after 1945. He examines how pre-war experiences and political …Read More

A weekly round-up of news and happenings in German-American relations. Business and Economics Moelis & Co. names Bank of America’s Stefan Mueller to head investment banking in Germany. (Bloomberg) After Brexit, the Dax recovery rally continues. (FAZ) The International Monetary Fund on Wednesday said that Britain’s pending exit from the European Union is posing “a …Read More

A weekly round-up of news and happenings in German-American relations. Business and Economics Progressing in the diesel scandal, Volkswagen is proceeding with the conversion of their diesel-powered vehicles. (FAZ) Yields in the Eurozone corporate bond market have hit new lows as the European Central Bank enters as a giant buyer. The ECB is forecasted to …Read More

A weekly round-up of news and happenings in German-American relations. Business and Economics A press conference between Airbus and the Heinrich Boll Foundation was held to discuss how to make flying more environmentally friendly. (WIWO) Germany is seeking an alternative to a Chinese takeover of robot maker Kuka. The economics ministry is working on putting …Read More

Dr. Simone Heil, Program Director of the Africa and Middle East division of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, sits down with AICGS Society, Culture & Politics Program Director Dr. Lily Gardner Feldman for a discussion on youth exchange between Germany and Israel and its impact on the “special relationship” between the two countries. Dr. Heil …Read More

President Obama noted in an interview with the Asahi Shimbun before his visit to Hiroshima that his presence was an example of reconciliation: “I will point out that Prime Minister Abe and I coming to Hiroshima together shows the world the possibility of reconciliation—that even former adversaries can become the strongest of allies.” Six weeks …Read More

June 17, 2016 will mark the 25th anniversary of the German-Polish “Treaty of Good Neighborhood and Friendly Cooperation,”[1] in which both parties expressed the will to close a painful chapter of their history and to contribute to peace in Europe through bilateral reconciliation efforts. In the autumn of 2015, celebrations took place on the both …Read More

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