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Philosopher Habermas

Photo: Arne Immanuel Bänsch / picture alliance / dpa

In a statement on the Middle East war, Jürgen Habermas and three other co-authors have declared their solidarity with Israel. They call Israel's response to the Hamas massacre "justified in principle."

In addition to the well-known philosopher, the political scientist Rainer Forst, the lawyer Klaus Günter and the peace researcher Nicole Deitelhoff have also signed. They published the three-paragraph text "Principles of Solidarity" on the website of the "Normative Orders" research center at Frankfurt's Goethe University.

According to the authors, there are many "conflicting points of view" on the current situation, which is why some principles must be recorded. Israel's retaliation is justified, but its execution is controversially discussed, which is why the authors recommend principles of proportionality, the avoidance of civilian casualties and the conduct of a war with the prospect of future peace. On the other hand, it does not help in the assessment if "genocidal intentions are ascribed to the Israeli actions."

The signatories are particularly concerned about anti-Semitic reactions in Germany. It is intolerable "that Jews in Germany are once again exposed to threats to life and limb and have to be afraid of physical violence on the streets." Israel's right to exist and Jewish life are elements particularly worthy of protection in Germany, and the commitment to them is fundamental for political coexistence. The right to liberty and protection from racism applies to everyone. "Even those in our country who have cultivated anti-Semitic emotions and beliefs behind all kinds of pretexts must adhere to this."