Gee, there sure is a lot of integration and understanding and goodwill action going on around town these days. While Turkish groups who feel like second-class citizens boycott a “summit on integration” in Berlin (west) designed to make them feel like first-class ones, police have arrested 15 far-right extremists protesting the “Islamization” of their neighborhood in clashes concerning the controversial construction of the first mosque to be built in Berlin (east).

Meanwhile, a Holocaust memorial at Grunewald station called “Platform 17” where tens of thousands of Jews were once shipped to Nazi concentration camps was vandalized while a neo-Nazi in Görlitz (Saxony) nearly blew himself up with a pipe bomb that went off while he was putting it together in his apartment (yeah, I know, couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy).

I could blame all of this on the heat wave that Germany is going through at the moment if that where indeed the case but the weather here is actually rainy and cloudy and sucky as usual instead. Maybe everyone should just fall into a big Sommerloch (the infamous German “summer hole” where nothing happens while everybody goes on vacation) for awhile and take another shot at this integration and understanding and goodwill stuff in September again. October would be fine, too.

Or maybe it’s just because today is Friday the 13th?

Come visit me at Observing Hermann…

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