Letter: Tabloid Germans

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The Independent Online
Sir: The recent wave of articles proclaiming German xenophobia do not simply report on bigotry, they create it. Believing that similar dislike for foreigners cannot also be found in Britain, or in any country, is arrogant nationalism. My American wife received insults in my native Britain, just for being American. We recently moved to Germany, and if I tell people in England where I live, I often receive the reply: 'I don't like Germans', even though they have never been there, and do not know any German people.

I have received little hostility from Germans; those whom I know are greatly embarrassed by the new wave of Nazism. I am sad that these very serious problems have been reported in Britain by hate-mongering reporters who take a minority of idiots and claim that they represent an entire nation. Neo-Nazism is a problem, but if you believe that it is unique to Germany or that nationalism and racism have huge support here, then you are wrong.

The distorted stories in the tabloids make Britain appear as a nation of fools. They give the impression that the British are a small-minded nasty people who rejoice in the misfortunes of others, while ignoring their own. There is a better Britain by far, and it is not to be found in the raging inferiority complex of the tabloid press.

Yours faithfully,

JONATHAN VALLIS

Weil der Stadt, Germany

5 October

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