Football by an other name has the capacity to arouse fierce feelings of pride and anger. Ibrahim Bassal, an immigrant to Germany from Lebanon owns a small store in an area which has a high percent of immigrants. The immigrants became fanatic fans of German football and demonstrated their passion by purchasing a giant German flag to hand over the street as people gathered around their television sets in order to watch World Cup matches. They exploded with joy when Germany defeated England, but much to their surprise their enthusiasm was not shared by a group of left wing Germans who hated football as much as they hated what their nation represents as a result of World War II. A woman entered his shop and viciously attacked Ibrahim for displaying flags. She shouted that she was ashamed to be German because of World War II atrocities.
As among the founders of a Holocaust museum in America I stand with Ibrahim. The people of Germany have no connection with Nazi atrocities before they were born. A human can only be responsible for his/her actions, not those of parents or grandparents. If the Lebanese immigrants to Germany take pride in their football team it clearly shows that those who select to live in a nation are just as patriotic as those whose ancestors came a thousand years prior. Wave the damn German flag when your team wins.