Current Issue 3/2020

 

Content Overview: English Titles and Abstracts:

  • Hubert Leber: Arms Exports and Holocaust Remembrance. Saudi Arabia, Leopard 2 Tanks and the Secret Israel Clause of 1982 – a Paradigm Shift.
  • Julia Hörath: Pimps Targeted by the Kripo. “Preventative Crime-Fighting” in the Reich and in Bremen, 1933‒1938.
  • Sebastian Voigt: A “Walk of Shame” in an Industrial Conflict. The Chemical Industry Strike at Merck in Darmstadt in 1971 – a Case Study on Industrial Relations in the Federal Republic at the End of the “Economic Miracle”.
  • VfZ Focus Globalisation - Jan Eckel: Politics of Globalisation. Clinton, Blair, Schröder and the Reinvention of the World during the 1990s and 2000s - free acces until the publication of the next issue

 

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Abstracts

Hubert Leber, Arms Exports and Holocaust Remembrance. Saudi Arabia, Leopard 2 Tanks and the Secret Israel Clause of 1982 – a Paradigm Shift

 

When the Federal Security Council passed new political principles for arms exports under Chancellor Helmut Schmidt in spring 1982, a secret protocol note was adopted, which became known as the Israel Clause. It stated that decisions about arms exports should “also take into account the historical responsibility of the Germans towards the Jewish People”. The background was that Saudi Arabia wished to purchase hundreds of Leopard 2 tanks, which had led to months of controversy in Bonn and a deep crisis in German-Israeli relations. For the first time Hubert Leber investigates the 1981/82 tank dispute on the basis of both German and Israeli government files while connecting international relations with the politics of the past. This postulated responsibility, which the German government approved on the initiative of Foreign Minister Hans-Dietrich Genscher, marked a caesura in Bonn’s Israel policy. While until then a sort of statute of limitations paradigm applied in relation to the Jewish state, the memory of the Holocaust was recognised as a permanently operative factor in German governance in the early 1980s.

 


Julia Hörath, Pimps Targeted by the Kripo. “Preventative Crime-Fighting” in the Reich and in Bremen, 1933‒1938

 

When Adolf Hitler became Reich Chancellor in 1933, the Bremen red light milieu was considered a top police problem in the city. Early on, the Criminal Police started to incarcerate sex workers and pimps on their own account without court judgments. Shortly after the introduction of the “preventative police detainment for professional criminals” policy in Prussia in November 1933, expert circles were already discussing its extension to include pimps. The argumentative contexts, which the Bremen criminalists presented in this debate, laid important groundwork for the extension of “preventative crime fighting” to new target groups. In the historiography of National Socialism, however, the history of “preventative crime fighting” has been neglected for a long time. To date persecuted persons such as pimps are considered “inconvenient victims”. Yet, as Julia Hörath shows, it is their history which highlights traditions and developmental dynamics which are central for the understanding of the radicalisation of police and penal power since the late 1930s.

 


Sebastian Voigt, A “Walk of Shame” in an Industrial Conflict. The Chemical Industry Strike at Merck in Darmstadt in 1971 – a Case Study on Industrial Relations in the Federal Republic at the End of the “Economic Miracle”

 

The early 1970s were a time of intensive industrial action. Even in the traditionally social partnership orientated chemical industry, the Chemie – Papier – Keramik union called for the first and so far only comprehensive strike in this industry. Sebastian Voigt recounts its origin, course and results. Using the example of the especially fiercely conducted confrontation at Merck in Darmstadt, he sheds light on the different levels of the conflict and the intra-union constellations by using a key document from the papers of Darmstadt union functionary Heinz-Günter Lang. In his conclusions, Voigt advocates affording the trade unions and industrial conflicts a central place in the history of the Federal Republic of Germany and “Rhenian Capitalism”.

 


Jan Eckel, Politics of Globalisation. Clinton, Blair, Schröder and the Reinvention of the World during the 1990s and 2000s

 

Instead of presupposing globalisation as a fundamental process of the late 20th century, contemporary history should investigate the idea of a globalisation as a historical product of the turn of the Millennium. Politically talk of globalisation received widespread importance. The governments of Bill Clinton, Tony Blair and Gerhard Schröder justified core reform projects in both domestic and foreign policy with the necessity to respond to a speedily interconnecting world. In doing so, policy in the name of globalisation was founded on fuzzy knowledge and oscillated between conviction and strategy, thereby promoting some of the interconnections, which had supposedly been the original necessities in the first place. As much as political opponents fought against these reforms, they nevertheless widely agreed with the underlying diagnoses.

 




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