An interesting subject. Thanks for posting.
I am convinced that every cultural group or nation has its special mentalities and characteristics. Even
when we compare us with our neighbours, the French, nobody will deny that there are clear differences
here. The French have different characteristics than, for example, southern Italians or Norwegians.
Even after 30 years of separation, i.e. only one generation, there are differences between people between
the new and old federal states within Germany, and that with a common language and history.
After 20 years in Africa and the Middle East, these are my experiences when it comes to comparing specific
mentalities of different cultural groups. To get to the point, Germans are generally more unfriendly, more
intolerant, harsh and much more direct than other nations, but they undoubtedly also have advantages.
An old Tanzanian proverb was in Swahili:
“Wengereza maneno mazuri, roho kali,
Wadtaschi maneno makali, roho nzuri
(Today's Swahili grammar would certainly be written differently)
“Die Deutschen haben harte Worte aber ein weiches Herz,
die Engländer benutzen weiche Worte sind aber hartherzig
To come back to your remark; - I've never seen someone treat me badly because I'm German. On the contrary,
German product quality and engineering are welcomed everywhere around the world. Absurd, but in Arab-Muslim
nations, Germans are even admired for their crimes against the Jews. 15 years ago I was asked in Libya whether
Adolf Hitler was still alive. I tried to explain to them that if it hadn't been for these madmen, these historical problems
between Israel and its Arab neighbours would not have existed.
Germanophobia (also German-hatred or German(en)hostility) is an attitude that rejects Germans, sometimes
Germany per se, with its culture, language, and ascribed "traits." During imperialist conflicts and wars in the
19th and 20th centuries, this was a widespread phenomenon in other countries, especially those that fought
wars with Germany.
I can definitely confirm the statement. In my opinion this is due to two lost world wars. In both wars, the British
Empire in particular was brought to the brink of the abyss and only saved from it with the help of the Americans.
But those who hate the Germans the most nowadays; - are the Germans themselves:
“Dazu kommt, vor allem unter den politischen und medialen Eliten in Deutschland, „eine feindselige Haltung
gegenüber der eigenen Gesellschaft und ihrer politischen Ordnung, bei gleichzeitiger Glorifizierung alles Fremden,“
wie der Psychiater Alexander Meschnig diagnostiziert hat: „Der Selbsthass und die eigene Bußfertigkeit, die in der
Abwertung des Eigenen eine Tugend erblickt, sind so tief in den kulturellen Traditionen unserer protestantisch
geprägten Schuldkultur verwurzelt, dass etwa jegliche Kritik an der selbstzerstörerischen Asylpolitik als moralisches
Versagen und herzlose Haltung erscheint. Europa, der geografische und politische Raum, in dem die Menschenrechte
erfunden wurden, wird so wahrscheinlich an der strikten Einhaltung seiner humanistischen Grundsätze zugrunde
“Day by day and almost minute by minute the past was brought up to date. . . . All History was a
palimpsest, scraped clean and reinscribed exactly as often as was necessary” – G. ORWELL 1984