Berlin - Chancellor Angela Merkel said Saturday that Nazi-era crimes must not be forgotten and that Germany had a responsibility to prevent such a “dark chapter” from ever repeating itself.
“And of course we want to make it clear that we will intervene in other places where there is injustice,” she said in a podcast timed to coincide with the 80th anniversary of Adolf Hitler's coming to power.
“(The responsibility) must be made clear to generation after generation,” she said.
“And we must say: With courage, and the courage to stand up for one's beliefs, every single person can contribute to ensuring that racism and anti-Semitism have no chance,” she continued.
Her comments also came a day before the anniversary of the freeing of the Nazi concentration camp Auschwitz, in today's Poland, by the advancing Red Army in 1945.
President Paul von Hindenburg appointed Hitler chancellor on January 30, 1933. The Nazi leader cemented his grip on power with a campaign of violence and suppression of political opponents.
“There were a lot of decent people who didn't take part,” said Merkel. “But unfortunately there were also very, very many who allowed themselves to be blinded.”
“That's why it's even more important that we don't forget this dark chapter ... that we always remember it, to make us immune, so that it can never, never repeat itself,” the chancellor said. - Sapa-dpa