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Escudero, Miguel

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El Correo - Spain | 04/09/2006

The conscience of Günter Grass

The Spanish writers Miguel Escudero and Blanca Alvarez defend the attitude of German writer Günter Grass, who only recently revealed his past in the Waffen SS. They compare his situation to that of a young Spaniard enrolled in the army under Franco's dictatorship. According to them, between those who confess and those who forget, there is a difference: conscience. Like the Spanish soldier who cried at the time of the retreat, thinking back to when he was enrolled, "Günter Grass has confessed to enrolling in the army in his youth, aged 15, in the middle of the horror. A gesture against forgetting, like a request for forgiveness of past errors. ... Let us not forget that here our own former leaders with pro-Franco pasts are benefiting from their minister's retirement pensions, for 'service to the nation'."

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