Reuven Rivlin: Israel and Germany walk together between past and present – The Jerusalem Post

Posted By on January 29, 2020

President Reuven Rivlin addressed the Bundestag, German parliament, on Wednesday morning, to speak about the resurgence of antisemitism and the recently released peace plan of US President Donald Trump. Speaking at a special session of the Bundestag in memory of the victims of Nazism, the presidents speech marked the culmination of a week of Holocaust remembrance services. Rivlin spoke at the Fifth World Holocaust Forum in Jerusalem last week and addressed Holocaust survivors at a commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau on Monday. Rivlin began his speech by reciting the Jewish memorial prayer of Yizkor. It was a powerful moment, in a building where Hitler once stood and declared the end of world Jewry.Germany, the place where the Final Solution was envisaged, took upon itself the responsibility to defend nationalist-liberal values when they are being eroded by waves of populism, Rivlin said. If Germany fails trying to prevent the disaster, others everywhere are likely to fail.German governments have invested in an unprecedented way in remembrance and memorial, in fighting Holocaust denial and in educating the next generations, the president said, as he commended Germany on its role in the modern world and its determination to fight modern antisemitism and to continue educating future generations. Israel and Germany walk together, with tension and with courage, between past and present, between the obligation to remember and never to forget.The president also spoke about Trumps Deal of the Century, which was released on Tuesday, warning that trust needs to be built between the two sides in order to secure a lasting peace.We must build confidence between us. The future of the Middle East and the integration of Israel in the region hinges on building this trust, Rivlin stated.The strength of the State of Israel makes us, in the view of many around the world, into Goliath and the Palestinians into David. We are not David and they are not Goliath. [And] we are not Goliath and they are not David, Rivlin stated. Israels strength and might over the years was and is the key to peace, not an obstacle to peace.Rivlin followed German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier to the podium. The German president said, I wish I could say with conviction we have learned from the past. But how can I say that? How can I say that when wearing a kippah is dangerous? Or when Jews put their menorahs away when someone comes round to read the gas meter?Let us stand up to the old evil forces. Let us withstand the seduction of authoritarianism, Steinmeier said. We want to show Israel and the world that our country is doing justice to the trust bestowed upon us again. So that what can happen, will not happen.Rivlin and Steinmeier also visited a Jewish school in Berlin together on Tuesday. At the Moses Mendelssohn Jewish High School, Rivlin told students that building connections between different people from all over the world is the most important thing in order to build an inclusive society.

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Reuven Rivlin: Israel and Germany walk together between past and present - The Jerusalem Post

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