This week, Israel and Germany are celebrating the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries. Germany and Israel have a unique common fate, influenced by the Holocaust but also by the experience that was gained shaping a common present and future in spite of that terrible disaster. Today, 60 years after the end of World War II and the Holocaust - the mass murder of German and European Jews by the Germans - relations between Israel and Germany are stable and solid.

Our countries have established social and political ties. Germany recognizes its responsibility for preserving the memory of the past for the future generations. It also recognizes its responsibility to defend the existence and security of Israel as the homeland of the Holocaust survivors and Jews throughout the world.

Forty years ago, we opened a new chapter in our relations and Israel today regards Germany as a friend. We live in a time of declining number of Holocaust survivors when anti-Semitism still develops. That is why we must further develop our relations. We have multiplied the cultural exchanges and we have created organizations to coordinate our policies in front of the challenges of the 21st century. This anniversary is the right time to strengthen our association.

Ha&8217;aretz (Israel)
Reference newspaper for the Israeli intellectual left wing. Property of Schocken family. Circulation: 75 000 copies.

Israel and Germany, a 40-year friendship ”, by Silvan Shalom y Joschka Fischer, Ha’aretz, May 18, 2005.