Foreign Ministry Blasts Goethe-Institut Over Nakba Event on Kristallnacht Anniversary


The Israeli Foreign Ministry blasted the Goethe-Institut Israel on Tuesday for its upcoming event, “Grasping the Pain of the Others – Panel discussion on the Holocaust, Nakba and German Remembrance Culture,” set to be held on the 84th anniversary of Kristallnacht.

“The Foreign Ministry expresses shock and disgust in the face of the blatant cheapening of the Holocaust and the cynical and manipulative attempt to create a linkage whose entire purpose is to defame Israel,” read the ministry’s statement.

The ministry also called on the organizers to cancel the “outrageous” event.

The panel, organized in conjunction with the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation’s Israel office, features Israeli academics and German journalist Charlotte Wiedemann.

Kristallnacht took place on November 9, 1938, when Nazi forces and German civilians attacked synagogues and Jewish business, killing hundreds.

Subsequently, the institute said it will postpone the event

“The remembrance of the Shoah and the commemoration of the victims is a major concern of the Goethe-Institut, to which we devote ourselves in numerous projects,” it said in a German-language statement, according to The Times of Israel. “We regret that the choice of date for a panel discussion has currently caused irritation.”

The new date is Sunday, November 13.

“The Goethe-Institut stands for understanding and dialogue,” the statement added. “That is what the planned discussion is about.”

The statement expressed regret for the timing of the panel discussion, but did not address the criticism about the linkage of the Holocaust to other issues.

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