One-third of Germans: Israeli and Nazi policies similar


BERLIN (JTA) — More than one-third of Germans equated Israeli policies toward the Palestinians with Nazi policies towards the Jews, a new study found.

Called “Germany and Israel Today: Linked by the Past, Divided by the Present?” the study of 1,000 Germans aged 18 and over was released Monday, one day before International Holocaust Remembrance Day.

The survey, which was conducted in October by the German Bertelsmann Foundation, found that while many Germans would prefer not to discuss the Holocaust, they are willing to compare Israeli policies toward Palestinians today with those of Nazi Germany.

Among the findings, 35 percent of the respondents held the view on Israeli and Nazi policies, rising from 30 percent in 2007. The view was more likely among less educated respondents, according to a statement accompanying the study.

In addition, 48 percent of respondents held a negative view of Israel, including a majority of those 18 to 29. Overall, 36 percent of Germans viewed Israel favorably.

Regarding the Holocaust, 58 percent of Germans said it was time to put the past behind them, while 38 percent disagreed.

Stephan Vopel, the Bertelsmann Foundation’s expert on Israel, said the study showed an increased need for “direct encounters between young people from both countries.”

The survey was conducted by the polling firm TNS Emnid through telephone interviews. The margin of error was 3 percent.

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