A German Jewish journalist is being criticized for interviewing a top neo-Nazi for a magazine.
Michel Friedman, a former German Jewish leader, had intended to interview extreme rightist Horst Mahler for the German edition of Vanity Fair magazine about his days as a founder of the far-left Red Army Fraction some 30 years ago. But Mahler, who underwent a political transformation many years ago, uttered mostly far-right rantings, including Holocaust denial.
Friedman sued Mahler for his comments, which are illegal in Germany, after the two-hour interview.
But the interview should never have happened in the first place, said the general secretary of the Central Council of Jews in Germany. Stephan Kramer told the Tagesspiegel newspaper that the interview was “unspeakable, and completely without justification.”
Vanity Fair editor Ulf Poschardt had said he wanted to confront Germans with the reality of an ideology that recent opinion polls show too many of them secretly approve. He called Friedman “courageous.”
Criticism is also coming from across the political spectrum, including leading members of the Social Democratic, Christian Democratic and Left parties.