Germany commemorates Friday, 80 years later, the "Crystal Night", these pogroms, murders, arrests and sackings announcing the extermination of the Jews, in a context of fear of a revival of anti-Semitism.

Numerous events are organized throughout the country on this occasion, which will be commemorated by Angela Merkel in a speech in a synagogue in Berlin, in the presence of the Central Council of Jews in Germany.

More than 1,400 places of worship burned throughout Germany, shops held by Jews ransacked and pillaged, at least 91 people killed and thousands deported: for historians, what happened in Germany and Austria the 9 and November 10, 1938 marks the passage of the discrimination of the Jews to their persecution then their extermination by the Nazis.

The propaganda then asserts that it is an eruption of spontaneous violence after the murder of a diplomat in Paris. But it was actually planned at the highest level of the Nazi hierarchy.

Cloudy context 

The signal was given by Joseph Goebbels, Minister of Propaganda, and the destruction carried out by SS, SA, Hitler Youth. The "Crystal Night" or "broken glass" night differs from pogroms in Eastern Europe in the 19th century.

This commemoration, which telescopes with the centenary of the Armistice of the First World War and the end of the German Empire, takes place in a troubled context in Germany.

Just a year ago, the Bundestag was an extreme right-wing group, the Alternative for Germany (AfD). And in August, the city of Chemnitz (former East Germany) was the scene of manifestations and xenophobic violence.

"Today, we see again violence in the streets", is alarmed by AFP Felix Klein, the government commissioner against anti-Semitism, who is worried about the "radicalization of speech in Germany".

French President Emmanuel Macron said he was "struck" on October 31 by the resemblance between the current situation in Europe, "divided by fears, the nationalist withdrawal", and that of the 1930s.

"Look how in five years the situation has evolved in Turkey, Brazil, the United States, Syria and even here in Germany, with Chemnitz", abounds Uwe Neumärker, director of the Foundation in memory of murdered European Jews.

He is one of the designers of an exhibition devoted to the "Crystal Night" at the Berlin Topography of Terror Museum, located on the former site of the Gestapo and the SS.

"In November 2018, we are not on the precipice of another Crystal Night, but it is our duty to prevent such atrocities from happening again," warns the World Jewish Congress.

Many Germans commemorate this Night by polishing or laying flowers on the "Stolpersteine", thousands of small brass plaques embedded between the cobblestones to identify the victims and their address.

 New form of anti-Semitism 

In 2017, plaques were stolen, fueling the fear of a resurgence of anti-Semitism, a shameful reality for a country whose identity was built on repentance for the Holocaust.

A new form of anti-Semitism for Germany regularly makes headlines, the one lent to many Arab-Muslim migrants who have flocked since 2015.

But the rise of the German far-right has also brought national anti-Semitism to the forefront. The AfD has multiplied the controversies related to Nazism, judging in particular that Germany had to stop his repentance for the extermination of the Jews. Right-wing activists wanted to demonstrate in Berlin on Friday, but the rally was banned.

The concern continues to grow in the German Jewish community, with about 200,000 people.

The number of antisemitic crimes and offenses has remained stable in police statistics, with around 1,400 cases registered each year since 2015. More than 90% of cases are attributed to the extreme right.