If German history is any indication, simply turning the page isn’t an option.
A female reporter has been punched in the face in a crowd of counter-protesters as she filmed the aftermath of a fatal car attack in Charlottesville.
And yet this near-total destruction did little to prevent the neo-Nazis and revisionists from reorganizing.
The 1952 court ban on the Nazi Party’s successor, the Socialist Reich Party, sent a much stronger message.
East Germany, all the more parsimonious after bearing the brunt of Soviet reparations, was the first to realize that pragmatic compromise was essential.
Of course, the Third Reich’s insignia had to come down and mostly did, but the structures themselves were retained for new functions and uses.
Rather than rashly overcompensating for decades of inaction by haphazardly tearing down or hiding Confederate monuments, Americans should have the painful debates necessary to decide the fate of these relics of a bygone era.The overdue momentum to remove various Confederate symbols, especially about 1,500 statues, from their perches has picked up across the country in the aftermath of right-wing violence in Charlottesville, Va. In others, activists have seized the initiative to speed things up. In some cases, state or local authorities have driven the process.Recently, the issue has made headlines from Ukraine to Taiwan.But nowhere have the questions about the physical markers of unwanted pasts — first Nazi, then Communist and, lately, colonial — played out as long as they have in Germany.