Sunday, 10 November 2013

Things I heard at dinners in Germany

A man I just met at a dinner party told me that half of Berlin’s real estate was now in Jewish hands. I tried to suggest that this was somewhat exaggerated but he was certain of it. Since unification, he told me, they have bought packages of tens of thousands of flats in the city.

“I have no problem with it”, he hastened to add, fearing that I might think him an anti-Semite. “On the contrary, they are clever, they have a good nose for it”, he explained and “I try to follow the market to also do a deal now and then and it is useful to know what they are doing.”

Different party – different people, similar sentiment: a German academic in her forties, who has spent a couple of years in the USA, told me that Jewish academics look after each other. I questioned her statement and she was “certain” that if a Jewish researcher has his or her grant cut, his Jewish friends will help him out for a while, out of their own budgets, until things are sorted. “No”, she said “not forever, but for a year or two.”


  1. So terribly sad but not surprised at all about your dinner conversations....I doubt they will ever change.
    Don’t stay over there for too long!

  2. Although there is only a sample of two in this survey, you seem to have have found a representative cross section of the (educated part of) the German population.