A new TV documentary from an Israeli team filming at a neo-Nazi rock festival in Germany has shown how anti-Semitic views remain prevalent on the German right.
The two-part video exploration of the annual gathering in Thüringen is based on German-language interviews conducted by Antonia Yamin, Europe correspondent for KAN Israel. Released last month, they have now been translated with subtitles.
Yamin was given exclusive access to the festival and its organisers, and found most were reluctant to answer questions about the Holocaust, owing to German laws around Holocaust denial.
Despite the heavy police presence, however, she interviewed festival-goers who told her that those reading a Jewish newspaper in Germany “can always read what will happen in two weeks, because Jews always have more information than others… Press organs, it’s very interesting”.
Later, she was told “they take out the important paragraphs” of the Talmud, “for example that it is permissible to deceive and kill someone who is not Jewish”.
The event hit international headlines last year after video emerged of 2,000 neo-Nazis at the festival giving the Nazi salute and shouting ‘Heil.’ This year, the numerical reference to ‘Heil Hitler’ – 88 – is seen in abundance.
Some participants are seen wearing T-shirts expressing solidarity with jailed Holocaust deniers while others dismiss focus on the impact of refugees and those of different nationalities now living on German soil.
The far-right in Germany, which the documentary shows as honouring Nazi generals such as Rommel, has been buoyed by the recent electoral success of the AfD, an anti-immigrant party whose co-founder last year criticised the Holocaust memorial in Berlin, saying Germans needed to radically rethink how they commemorate the past.
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