The Washington PostThe Washington Post

Germany, a model for coming to terms with its past, still struggles with its colonial period

By Luisa Beck

03 Jan 2020 · 6 min read

BERLIN - The man appointed to negotiate an apology for the 20th century's first genocide, German diplomat Ruprecht Polenz, speaks of a need to establish "a common understanding of what happened in the past."

At issue is what happened between 1904 and 1908, when German colonial troops killed an estimated 80,000 people in southwest Africa, in what is now Namibia.

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