A new study of German teens shows clear signs of anti-Jewish sentiments.
In talks with teens around Germany, the Berlin-based Amadeu-Antonio Foundation, which works against racism and xenophobia, found that a large number of the teens believed Jews must have done something to deserve being persecuted during the Third Reich.
The results of the study, titled “I have nothing against Jews, but …,” were presented Tuesday by sociologist Barbara Schauble during “Action Weeks against Anti-Semitism.” Scheduled to end Friday with commemorations of the 69th anniversary of the Kristallnacht pogroms against Jews and Jewish property, the action weeks include discussions with eyewitnesses, theater and film presentations, and other programs.
For the study, researchers interviewed some 20 groups of Germans aged 13 to 19. More than half reportedly agreed that Jews have too much influence on world events. Interviewers concluded that an educational offensive is urgently needed. According to news reports, many German teens believe the stereotype that Jews are rich. Many explained that they had learned this in schoolbooks, which, for example, suggest that the National Socialists persecuted Jews because they were suspected of manipulating the financial markets.
More than 20 percent rejected the statement that “Jews living in Germany should have the same rights in all respects as other Germans.”