That used to be what Americans and Britons were advised in post-1950s Germany. Especially the decades during which one was likely to meet, socially or professionally, or just out and about, Germans of a certain age who, as Paul Fussell observed while teaching at Heidelberg for a year, were strangely silent about just what they’d been doing from . . . oh, say . . . 1938-45.
As that generation dies out [n.B. What might turn out to be one of the last Nazi war criminals — a former guard at Auschwitz and Buchenwald — has been arrested in Philadelphia and is being deported back to Germany to stand trial.] it appears that there are still things you cannot mention in Germany.
Things like where immigrant criminals come from. From the FAZ we have this report. A woman “from an immigrant family,” but who is a German citizen, is raped. She knew her attacker (a German), although they apparently had no connection (specifically, no prior or current romantic connection) otherwise. She reported the crime and an arrest warrant issued. The perp hoofed it. Yesterday four men, two from her family and two Germans, found him in a parking lot near the French border. They beat him to death (and good for them, I have to say). [Update (20 Jun 14): It appears that it was the woman’s 17-year-old brother, and he stabbed the perp to death . . . 23 stab wounds.] All four have now been arrested.
Nowhere in the article do they mention where this woman’s family came from. [Update (20 Jun 14): This article corrects the oversight; she came from Lebanon.]
I’ve posted earlier here about the concerns in Germany about the rise and dynamics of a parallel justice system among immigrants of specific groups, specifically groups which just happen to follow the Religion of Peace. There’s all this hand-wringing about “parallel justice” among certain specific groups, and yet when instances of it occur, it’s as if there’s no connection at all. Silence. It’s as if the entire German media industry is experiencing the Butterfield Effect.
Don’t mention the war. Don’t mention where they’re from.
[Update (20 Jun 14): With today’s article in the FAZ, linked above, it appears that this post is largely mooted. One interesting thing mentioned in the article is that the woman’s family appears to have lured the perp, whom the police somehow couldn’t find, to the parking lot where they killed him. They got a buddy to arrange a bogus drug deal, using unspecified social media. The article also mentions that the police didn’t bother with a wire tap, didn’t put out a BOLO, and weren’t themselves monitoring the perp’s social media — although the article specifically recites that they could have. The woman’s brother — and good for him, allow me to repeat — got understandably pissed that the police were dragging their feet. So he did their job for them. It’s a shame that he’ll be tried there, and not here, because if I were defending him I think I’d go with justifiable homicide as a defense. And I bet most juries around here would agree.]