Chancellor Angela Merkel and Jewish leaders will gather at Germany's biggest synagogue to pay tribute to the victims of the Kristallnacht pogrom of November 9-10, 1938 and to the miraculous rebirth of Jewish life in recent years.
Because it shares the same date, the fall of the Berlin Wall will also be marked and the victims of communist East Germany remembered at low-key events ahead of the 20th anniversary next year."
Commemoration of Kristallnacht has become ritualized in Germany. Virtually forgotten is Germany's November Revolution, which began on November 9, 1918 when Friedrich Ebert declared the end of the German monarchy. At the same time, Kurt Eisner declared Bavaria a Free State and Republic, which would be governed by workers- and soldiers soviets or councils (Räterepublik). The inspiration in both Berlin and Munich was the 1917 Russian Revolution. The Bavarian Soviet Republic was short-lived: the "White Guard" loyalists of the German army soon entered the city, assassinated Eisner and slaughtered over 1000 citizens. Today, as Andrea Naica-Loebell writes, Eisner and the November Revolution in Germany are virtually forgotten:
München hat einen Franz Josef Strauß Flughafen und auch sonst kann sich die Liste der Ehrungen dieses ehemaligen bayerischen Ministerpräsidenten sehen lassen.
Für Kurt Eisner und die Räterevolution hat das Land dagegen nicht viel übrig. In München ist eine unbedeutende Straße (die vom Karl-Marx-Bogen abgeht!) in der Satellitenstadt Neuperlach nach ihm benannt.
(Munich has a Franz Josef Strauss Airport and otherwise a long list of street-names, buildings, etc. honoring this (ultra-conservative) former minister president of Bavaria. But the state doesn't have much interest in commemorating Kurt Eisner and the Bavarian Soviet Republic. In Munich there is an insignificant street in the satellite city of Neuperlach that is named after him (a turn-off from Karl Marx Street).The end of Kurt Eisner and the Bavarian Soviet Republic ushered in an era of right-wing extremism and terror. Munich became a hotbed of fascist activity, culminating with Hitler's stormtroops marching in an attempted putsch on the War Ministry five years later - on November 9, 1923.