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I have a question: Stefan wrote in his account that the city of Dusseldorf was one of the sponsors of the rally, and that two CDU politicians spoke at the event.

Does this ever happen with the other side? Do cities or towns give official support to anti-Israel/pro-Palestinian/pro-Lebanon rallies?

Thanks. And of course, it was nice to see the pictures. Yay for sanity!

Note from David: No, not to my knowledge. And I wouldn't know why they should. Neither would I know of any official support for North Korea, Iran, Syria, etc., etc.
As to mp's: my guess is that members of the Green party in the past attended pro Palestine demonstrations, but I don't recall any specific occasions. Also, the FDP had a few mp's (not all of them are still alive, if you know what I mean) who leanded towards Arabian causes. Did they ever attend pro-Palestine demonstrations? Likely, but I don't know for sure.

It's good to know there is at least a counter-movement in Germany to the current wave of Jew hatred. A real relief to see that there are some Germans, like Stephan and our hosts, who are brave enough to swim against the tide.

"A sign of hope", "a pro-Israel demonstration took place"... you make it seem like this would have been the first pro-Israel rally in years.

Why not saa "another sign of hope" or "another pro-Israel demonstration" or better: "There are not just pro-Arab demonstrations and media reports, but also pro-Israel demonstrations and media reports in Germany"?

I know Medienkritik wants to be a watchblog, but the fact of the matter is that hundreds (or thousands) of your readers get all their news about Germany from you. At least that is the impression I get from many comments. Not just from the two comments above. With great power, comes great responsibility.

I know you can't cover everything and you want to be a watchblog. And watchblogs focus on the negative. That's fine. But here you just needed a few different words.

There are all kinds of demonstration organized by all kinds of people all the time in Germany. There have always been pro-Israel rallies and petitions, publicly funded exhibitions, publications, youth exchanges, arms shipments, intelligence sharing, etc.

There is a reason why Israeli PM Olmert recently said: "Right now, there is no nation that is more friendly towards Israel than Germany."

Even the pretty Anti-American Berliner Zeitung took note and writes about leftist radicals (how do you translate "Autonome"?) waving the US flag and demonstrating for Israel and mentions a few of the many other demonstrations?

"Die Antideutschen: Sie gehören zu einer rätselhaften politischen Subkultur, und sie irritieren nicht nur die Linke im Land - junge Autonome, die US-Fahnen schwenken und für Israel demonstrieren. (...)Es sind 600 meist junge Leute, viele mit schwarzen Brillen, schwarzen Baseballkappen und schwarzen Kapuzenshirts verkleidet, die an diesem Sonntag vor zwei Wochen durch die Spandauer Vorstadt im Berliner Bezirk Mitte ziehen. Die dabei den Davidstern und das Sternenbanner schwenken (...)Zwei Wochen zuvor wurden solche jungen Leute in einem ähnlichen Aufzug in der West-Berliner City gesichtet. Allerdings waren sie da nicht in der Mehrheit. Die meisten der mehr als tausend Demonstranten, die für Israel zur Gedächtniskirche liefen, waren nicht schwarz gekleidet, nicht vermummt. Viele gehörten zur jüdischen Gemeinde oder zur CDU. (...) Zu ihren gemeinsamen Kundgebungen mit jüdischen Organisationen gegen den iranischen Präsidenten Mahmud Ahmadinedschad kamen im Juni, anlässlich der WM-Spiele des Irans, mehr als dreitausend Menschen; in Nürnberg sprach neben Claudia Roth von den Grünen auch der bayerische CSU-Innenminister Günther Beckstein.

Saw this via Hagalil:
"BERLIN, Aug. 25 (JTA) — One of Germany’s largest pro-Israel demonstrations in recent memory took place here Saturday — with no support from German Jewish groups.
The demonstrators, waving Israeli flags and marching under the slogan “Germany on Israel’s Side,” were mainly fundamentalist Christians who oppose a Palestinian state and believe Jewish control of the biblical Land of Israel is one of the preconditions for Jesus’ return.
While the event, which police said drew 4,000 participants, received publicity and informational material from the Israeli Embassy here, the Union of Jewish Students in Germany “distanced itself completely” from the idea that Jews must accept Jesus as their savior. The group also distanced itself from the anti-Muslim beliefs of some the organizers, according to a statement distributed by a handful of Jewish students at the march. "

There are plenty of demonstration with non-fundamentalist Germans as well, but I don't have time to google. Politically Incorrect wrote about a few.

Germans were waving Israeli flags at the world cup.

Thank you so much, Jorg!

I actually wrote an e-mail to Ray just a few days ago--i.e., before the "Sign of Hope" was posted on Medienkritik--and stated my very similar concerns. He replied to me that he would address these issues in a post pretty soon, which is great. I also fear that readers from the U.S. exclusively reading Medienkritik get a very slanted view of the German press and, more importantly, society. While it is important to fight existing anti-american bias, this should not cause a new bias on the other side of the pond.

As to the pro-Israel demonstrations, the anti-defamation league Berlin reports on them regularly and hosts a lot of pics. See https://www.adf-berlin.de/ for more information.

Furthermore, there is the Deutsch-Israelische-Gesellschaft (DIG) which is very busy defending Israel's right to self-defense. See http://deutsch-israelische-gesellschaft.de/. There you can also find links to many other German organizations promoting friendship with Israel.

And so on and so on. There is lots of support for Israel in Germany.

There are also numerous organizations dedicated to German-American friendship. On the highest level, you've got of course the Atlantikbruecke, however, there are also countless little organizations working on the ground with ordinary people. For instance, in Kiel you've got the Amerika-Gesellschaft, see http://amerika-gesellschaft.de/. They are all volunteers and do a great job. In every city, you'll find comparable groups.

I am very glad that there were pro-Israel demonstrations in Germany. I attended the one in Frankfurt on June 17th. We were between 500-1000 people and it has been great. But I do not think that 1000 people in a city like Frankfurt is a lot and compared to the demonstrations that took place against the war in Iraq (500.000 people in Berlin) it is ashamingly little. No reason to assume we were living in the best of all possible worlds. And I have not yet mentioned the anti-Israel bias in the media.

Ray, the link about "pro-Lebanon/Hezbollah rallies" states that Neun Demonstranten wurden nach Polizeiangaben festgenommen, da sie Fahnen oder Symbole der Hisbollah nicht herausgeben wollten. Thus there was a crackdown on Hezbollah supporters. Besides it states that Jewish associations have supported that demonstration as well. Can it really be a pro-Hezbollah rally if Jewish associations support it? And it states that the Lefties condemned rockets at Haifa. Thus the demonstration does not sound THAT bad. Bad yes, but perhaps not as bad as your post suggests. I don't know I did not attend that rally. Perhaps the article you linked to is not correct.

Besides, you compared the proIsrael demonstration in the small city of Duesseldorf with "pro-Lebanon/Hezbollah rallies" in the big city of Berlin, at least you linked only to the rally in Berlin: "Although the number of demonstrators at pro-Lebanon/Hezbollah rallies were clearly higher." So the question is: Have their been pro-Hezbollah demonstrations in Duesseldorf with as many participants as the pro-israel rally in Duesseldorf? Could very well be or could not be. I don't know. That would be a fair comparison.

Or you compare the demonstrations in Berlin: Your link about the "pro-Lebanon/Hezbollah" rally in Berlin stated that the police counted 4000 participants. The police also counted 4000 participants at the pro-Israel demonstration that I mentioned above.

Thanks, Tibor,

The million dollar questions that come up all the time are:

1.) How Anti-American is the German media?

2. Do Medienkritik's American readers get a wrong impression about "the" German media from Medienkritik? In other words: Is "the" German media landscape not as bad as most commentators here think it is, while pro-US and pro-Israel press reports and public opinions are more common than they think it is. It is a difficult question. The commentators might not be the typical Medienkritik readers. And even if the answer is "yes", these misunderstandings might not be Medienkritik's fault. It could also be that Tibor and I and many others misunderstand many commentators here.

Don, Bill, David V. and I started to discuss the first question here. More opinions are welcome.
Or perhaps, David and Ray, you could write a new post about your views on the German media in general. Kind of a mission statement. I think such a general post about your views about the entire German press and the influence of the Anti-American papers/TV programs/journalists in Germany would be very helpful, clear up some misunderstandings and would save you time to defend your posts against repeated criticism.

And earlier in that very same thread Ray D, JC, David V., Don and Johnny discussed the second question. I believe the same discussion has taken place on many other blogs before.

Positive posts in Medienkritik like this one do not generate much of a response from the regular readers, but negative posts like the one about the Hezbollah rally wind up many more comments...

@ Jorg,

It wasn't my intent to directly compare the Berlin demo with the Duesseldorf demo. However, I think you will find that pro-Israel rallies were attended by fewer people than anti-Israel rallies throughout Europe and the world. It was also not my intent to make this seem like it was the only pro-Israel rally in Germany nor did I intend to make the Berlin rally appear as the only anti-Israel rally. I put them both up to give readers a small taste of what was going on, not to serve as a comprehensive picture. I stand by my article in which I report that the far left and Muslim extremists had teamed up to bash Israel during the march. That was 100% the impression I got from observing and listening to their chants.

As far as readers using this as their only source of information on Germany. I don't think that most readers do that. Those who do should realize that this is a watchdog site aimed at exposing bias in German media and politics. Unfortunately, there are always going to be people who do not make an appropriate effort to properly and fully inform themselves on a subject matter as large and complex as German society. That is something I would like to write about in the near future.

Ray, you are absolutely right. Please keep up the good work!

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