Marek Siwiec MEP on Poland & Europe

Grass’s revival

Günter Grass has caused a fuss. His views expressed in the geopolitical poem “What must be said” are shocking because of two reasons: the credibility of the author and the total antagonism towards the German policy in the Middle East.

Grass, the 85-year-old poetaster, after having received the Nobel Prize award and admitted that he served in the SS, is now trying to condemn Israel’s nuclear power, the hypocrisy of the German policy, and generally takes the side of those who supposedly are threatened by Israel.

Since the last major war in the Middle East it has been over 12 years. Even if Israel has nuclear weapon, the threat of its use has never served offensive purposes. Moreover, Israel has proved that even the Egyptian tanks near Jerusalem in 1973 did not cause such a decision. Iran is an opposite case – it has no weapon yet and it already threatens Israel. And here lies the difference.

Günter Grass movingly asks in his poem: “Why do I stay silent, keep silent too long?”. Ad he answers: “Because I thought that my ancestry, which is afflicted by an irredeemable blemish, would forbid me to confront with this fact as spoken truth”. And this message frightens me the most. If it turned out that Grass’s way of thinking is typical for a part of the German public opinion, we would have to deal with a new quality. Then a significant group in this country will be revealed. A group that thinks in the same way as Grass but has never so far spoken in the name of “the irredeemable blemish”.

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