A warning voice and moral authority

A warning voice and moral authority

New synagogue in Berlin © Karin Wollschlager (KNA)

Moral authority, important companion in public debates and admonishing voice: Politicians have paid tribute to the Central Council of Jews on the occasion of its 70th anniversary. This Tuesday, the organization celebrates its anniversary with a ceremony.

Representatives from the political arena paid tribute to the Central Council of Jews in Germany as an important moral authority and admonishing voice. State Minister of Culture Monika Grutters (CDU) said Monday at the ceremony marking the Central Council’s 70th anniversary Tuesday in Berlin that the organization "played a decisive role in making Jewish people feel welcome in Germany again".

Unfortunately, this is still not a matter of course, especially in view of current anti-Semitic inflammatory slogans and violent attacks. The Green Party parliamentary group leaders of Katrin Goring-Eckardt and Anton Hofreiter thanked the Central Council for its determined commitment to Jewish life in Germany.

Ceremony in the courtyard of the New Synagogue Berlin

The ceremony in the courtyard of the New Synagogue Berlin – Centrum Judaicum will be attended by, among others, Central Council President Josef Schuster, German Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) and other invited guests from politics and society. The Central Council of Jews was founded on 19. Founded in Frankfurt am Main on July 1950. According to its own information, it currently has 105 Jewish communities with around 100.000 members.

Grutters emphasized that "when the Central Council of Jews was founded 70 years ago, a long road of confrontation with National Socialist barbarism lay ahead of Germany". This protracted process, he said, clearly demonstrated to Germans the failure of civilization during the dictatorship: "At the same time, it has strengthened our social resistance to anti-Semitism and racism," the CDU politician said.

Goring-Eckardt and Hofreiter expressed their thanks to the Central Council for its commitment to the reconstruction and strengthening of Jewish life in Germany after 1945. "We consider ourselves fortunate that 75 years after the Nazi atrocities, Jewish life is once again a central part of our society today," the Green politicians said. They called for concrete action against anti-Semitism: "Jews must be able to live safely in Germany."

Judaism firmly anchored again in German society

The FDP parliamentary group’s anti-Semitism commissioner, Benjamin Strasser, said Judaism was once again firmly anchored in German society. Its radiance is largely due to the 70-year work of the Central Council, he added. "He was, is and will remain an important companion in public debates and a warning voice for coming to terms with the German crime against humanity of the Shoah," Strasser explained in Berlin. He said it was shameful "that in the anniversary year of the Central Council, anti-Semitism is again showing its ugly face and Jews are subject to increasing hostility and violent attacks".

The former president of the Central Council, Charlotte Knobloch, said that it was impossible to imagine public debates in this country without the organization. The body, together with the Federal Republic, has "reinvented itself again and again in recent decades and supported and enriched Germany’s Jewish life," explained the president of the Jewish Community of Munich and Upper Bavaria. "Without him, our country would not be what it is."

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