I’ve been living in Germany for a little over three years now and, language aside, I think I’ve adapted pretty well to the place. It’s a lot more chilled out than the UK that’s for sure. There are however some things that I think I’ll never stop finding amusing and/or frustrating. The sliproads from the Autobahn being labelled “Ausfahrt” for example. Yes I am a child.
Another really weird thing, and something that I probably only notice because I’m British and we are rather unreasonable about certain things at times. Queues in the supermarket. OK, a strange thing to pay much attention to but this really is a pestilence at the heart of German society. I’ve noticed a certain behaviour amongst Germans of all walks of life, all classes, genders, races, that is so abhorrent I am barely able to control my rage. Seriously, I even occasionally tut and roll my eyes.
This despicable practice only occurs when a certain kind of person reaches the front of the queue and, unbelievable as this will be to any civilised person, they will stand there calmly watching the cashier scan their shopping and then, once it has all been scanned and has formed a huge pile in front of them, they will pay and only then, ONLY THEN, will they begin to pack their groceries into bags! THE MONSTERS! Meaning that the cashier is scanning your groceries and adding them to the pile that this inhuman fiend has left of their own shopping.
Absolutely disgusting behaviour. Possibly the worst thing any German has ever done.
Another really weird thing that I’ve come across is a really strange phenomena that could only occur in Germany thanks to, you know, the Nazis. I think that there is probably a similar phenomenon at work in the US due to white guilt over slavery, segregation, and well, America in general.
The phenomena I’m speaking of here is the “Anti-Deutsch”, a current within the left that takes an, understandable given history, obsession with Anti-Semitism so far that it begins to become Anti-Semitic in itself. It’s fucking weird and really difficult for me to get my head around. Especially as my German is in no way good enough to read the dense political screeds these people write.
The theory, so far as I can understand, seems to be that there’s something inherent to the German people that is Anti-Semitic and predisposed to fascism (completely ignoring the history of fascism and authoritarian regimes all over the world) which means constant vigilance against all signs of Anti-Semitism and fighting against fascism every time it rears its ugly bonehead.
Fighting against fascism and Anti-Semitism is, obviously, something that all right thinking people should engage in but in the case of the Anti-Deutsch this has evolved into something pathological, possibly even psychopathic. Not only do they see Anti-Semitism absolutely everywhere and in everything but they end up espousing arguments that would be formerly heard by some died in the wool Black Shirt.
A couple of classy examples that I’ve heard since being here:
- It’s wrong to take action against or criticise shitty landlords as landlord is one of the few ‘jobs’ that Jewish people were allowed to engage in.
- Translation: Shitty capitalist practices are beyond criticism because a small minority of Jewish people also engaged in this shitty practice. If this isn’t reinforcing Anti-Semitic notions of the capitalist Jewry then I don’t know what is?
- Criticising the state of Israel is criticising all Jews.
- Translation: Jews are an homogenous group forever associated with the actions of a bourgeois state and its ruling class. Sounds very much like the arguments of Anti-Semites who use the actions of the Israeli state as an excuse to attack Jewish people as a whole.
- Jewish people that are critical of the Israeli state have been brainwashed into feeling guilt for being Jewish.
- I mean, this is just such obvious bullshit but it would be one thing for one Jewish person to criticise another with this but when it’s a bunch of intellectual German lefties it’s just patronising and offensive beyond belief. Poor little Jews, don’t understand themselves. We’ve read a lot about you so we know better. Urgh
The reason that these fruit-loops have been on my mind recently is because of recent events in Halle, Hanau, and Berlin.
Following the shooting of a number of people in Shisha bars in Hanau there was an anti-fascist demonstration called in Bremen the next day. A few thousand people attended and amongst them were a couple of left wing kiddies flying Israel flags. Because… reasons. It seems that someone had words with them about flying national flags on a demonstration against fascism being in pretty poor taste, So they fucked off and have now written an, long winded and ridiculous, article about how Bremen is now the capital city of left-wing Anti-Semitism because they were told to take their nationalist symbolism away. These people are demented.
[Addendum] The website “Ach Gut” is apparently owned by some AfD twonk. Which says a lot about the politics of these supposed Anti-Fascists…
[Addendum zwei] The AfD are the German equivalent of UKIP but are a lot more up front about being racist cunts.
[Addendum drei] Seems that the group who were flying the flags at the demo weren’t the ones who wrote the piece in Ach Gut, that was some right wing tit. However, if twats from the AfD are agreeing with you…
They also claimed that, following the shooting at a Synagogue in Halle last year, people weren’t as outraged as they were about the shooting of Arabs. (Yes, there’s a horribly racist anti-Arabic current within the Anti-Deutsch) Despite there being as many, and as large, anti-fascist demonstrations in the days following the shooting in Halle. They completely ignore actual facts in order to justify their pathology.
Which brings us to Berlin.
One of my favourite punk bands of all time are the amazing Oi Polloi from Edinburgh. I’ve seen them god knows how many times and their lyrics were always really good at explaining political issues in a way that anyone can understand.
They’re an anarchist band and have been politically active over their whole career and have always been very vocally anti-fascist.
A number of years ago they played a show in Germany, I forget where right now, but back stage there was a poster calling for solidarity with the state of Israel (yup, lefties calling for solidarity with a bourgeois state, only in Germany) upon which someone had written: “Help Israel, kill an Arab”. Rightfully Deek, the singer of the band, took the poster on stage and said that calling for racist murders of Arabic people was utter shite. He then set fire to the poster. Unfortunately this poster had a picture of the Israeli flag on it so, in the Anti-Deutsch way of seeing things, this became “Oi Polloi burned and Israeli flag on stage” which then because “Oi Polloi are Anti-Semitic”. Something that’s clearly nonsense but don’t let rationality confuse your ideology boys and girls.
This has led to Anti-Deutsch wing nuts trying, and often succeeding, to get the band’s shows in Germany cancelled. This happened again just last week when the band were due to be playing in The Clash in Berlin. Anti-Deutsch types sent a, I kid ye not, 25 page document demanding Oi Polloi answer for their behaviour. This was 25 pages of either outright falsehoods or twisting things done and said so far out of context that they may as well be falsehoods.
I’m not going to go into the contents of the letter but if you read German it shouldn’t be too hard to find online.
This was enough to get the show cancelled because who wants a bunch of bellends calling your venue Anti-Semitic?
But, to add to the insanity of these people, they included in this document information about where the supposed Anti-Semitic monster who is the former bass player of the band now lives in Berlin.
That’s right, a bunch of Germans have basically doxxed an anarchist anti-fascist and his immigrant family in order to chase them out of their homes. Oh, I should also mention that the guy is Jewish too. But then, I’m sure a bunch of Germans hounding an immigrant Jewish family is something that has never ended badly…
So, yeah, Germans can be fucking mental at times.
Still, it’s not like the British left isn’t also chock-full of absolute cock wombles too. It’s just a shame that the spunk bubbles always seem to be the loudest. At least the beer here is good and cheap and my German is still, for the most part, too shit to read Anti-Deutsch “lefty” bollocks when I’m bored.
*Bomber Harris was a fucking war criminal.