So, after the overdue goal by Neuville in the 91st minute, Germany has started into the World Cup with two wins (which according to the commentator, they 'haven't done since 1990 and before that in 1974 and we all know what happenend then' (in case you do not live here and thus this hasn't been pounded into you yet, Germany won the World Cup in both instances)). Great.
This prompts me to try to explain in some kind of coherent manner why I do not like and do not support the German national team even when I actually watch quite a good amount of football all years (unlike most girls (and guys too for that matter) running around with flags on their cheeks screaming for Deutschland now). So, why is that the case.
Truth to be told I don't really know exactly, a friend of mine recently (and repeatedly since) claimed that I am a counter-person. With that he meant that I always (or most of the time) choose whatever is less popular or maybe the opposite of whatever is the popular favorite. He definitly has a point and I think that might very well have something to do with it. Yet, when I was in Frankfurt for the weekend and watched England-Paraguay play with approximately 3,000 British fans, I completely supported England too (and not only because I love the 'Ten German Bombers' song) even though that definitly was a mainstream opinion in the Main Arena.
I used to think that I actually do kind of like the German national team, but then I went with my parents and watched the game against Poland today and I not only detested most of the Germany supporters in there, I also rooted for Polska all game long.
As I said above, I don't really have an explanation for this, just an attempted one. What I think Germany can be proud of in its history after the 2nd World War is the fact that we never really developed a patriotic/nationalistic pride. I assume no one here will try to argue the folly of nationalism with me here, so the virtue of not having that should be clear. Now, I know that this is nationalism is as prevelant in other countries, most likely more so than here, but somehow that doesn't bother me (the US for reasons not explained here is different). I don't care about people running around waving English, French or Italian flags, Germans doing that, I just find them distasteful.
I guess what this boils down to, is the fact that I actually hold Germans (because I am one after all) to higher standards than other countries (which I have to concede is a sort of nationalism in itself). I just feel that with our history we should know better, but I guess we really don't and that pisses me off.
Finally, one last comment in a similar vein (and I am kind of quoting something a friend said the other day to which I wholeheartedly agree though). This whole business about 'finally' becoming a normal country, about 'finally' being able to be patriotic really is a joke. The people who commited these atrocious crimes are still alive (and some of those who endured them as well), my grandfather still says things that I would be embarassed to repeat anywhere and so do thousand others. This whole state (the BRD) was built by and on people who should have been sentenced to prison for years on end. I am not saying Germany is a bad country nowadays, truth to be told I believe in many regards it clearly belongs to the world's best choics for living, yet that doesn't change the fact that only two generations ago we committed these crimes and sorry but two generations really isn't long enough to just shake off this guilt and walk on.
In this sense, I hope the Czech Republic will win the World Cup, or Argentina, or Italy, or the Dutch, or England even Brazil if it can't be avoided, but please don't let Germany win. I will not be able to rejoice with that many morons on the street waving flags and screaming their lungs out, I guess I am just too patriotic for that.
Maybe the stupidest aspect of all this is, that half of the guys/girls wear shirts saying 'Germany'. How stupid is that?