Shalom Life | August 02, 2015

Holocaust Guilt Inspires Germans to Donate Estates to Israel

Donations from Germans have peaked in 2012, say Israeli government officials

By: Sammy Hudes

Published: August 1st, 2012 in News » Israel

Holocaust Guilt Inspires Germans to Donate Estates to Israel

Government sources in Israel say that there has been a rise in donations in 2012 from German citizens who wish to leave their estates to the State of Israel, according to Yedioth Ahronot.

Approximately once a month, a courier arrives at the Israeli embassy in Berlin with a letter sent from a recently deceased old German citizen and signed by an attorney stating that the deceased has decided to leave his or her money, home or jewels, and in some cases even gold bars, to Israel.

This phenomenon has gone on for years, says the Israeli embassy, as officials estimate that these donations are often sparked by the guilty conscience of some Germans due to the country’s dark past.

“We think these people's conscience was burdened with the mass extermination of the Jews and at the end of their days they decided to make amends by giving their estate to Israel,” an embassy official told Yedioth Ahronot.

Thus far, a total of 200 donors aged 80 to 100 years old have been recorded, with the largest single donation worth approximately NIS 6 million, or $1.5 million in Canadian currency.

The Israeli government says that there has been an increase in donations as of late, as this might be attributed to higher mortality rates of the donors due to old age.

While most donations are only revealed posthumously at the reading of the deceased’s will, some have even been known to occur during a donor’s lifetime.

After receiving these donations, the Israeli embassy in Berlin then transfers the assets over to the General State Custodian at the Ministry of Justice in Jerusalem.

A recent inquiry shows that many of the donors are devout Christians who decided to transfer their funds to Israel for religious reasons. The list also includes Jewish donors, probably childless, who decided to transfer their estate to Israel.

Anti-Violence Rallies Taking Place Across Israel Today Anti-Violence Rallies Taking Place Across Israel Today TrendingReport: 53% Rise in Anti-Semitic Incidents in the UK Report: 53% Rise in Anti-Semitic Incidents in the UK TrendingWoody Allen Speaks Out About Netanyahu Woody Allen Speaks Out About Netanyahu Trending
 

Anti-Violence Rallies Taking Place Across Israel Today

August 01, 2015 | By Noam 'Dabul' Dvir, Roi Yanovsky, Ahiya Raved, and Gilad Morag
Anti-Violence Rallies Taking Place Across Israel Today

Following two blood-soaked days, in which a Palestinian infant was killed and his parents and sibling were critically wounded in a fire and six people were hurt in a stabbing at Jerusalem's gay pride parade, thousands are expected to protest in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and Haifa

Read More

Report: 53% Rise in Anti-Semitic Incidents in the UK

August 01, 2015 | By B. Shane Morganstein
Report: 53% Rise in Anti-Semitic Incidents in the UK

Government officials are speaking out against anti-Semitism after new report finds rapid increase in anti-Semitic incidents

Read More

Film to be Made about Jonathan Pollard

August 01, 2015 | By B. Shane Morganstein
Film to be Made about Jonathan Pollard

The American jailed for passing sensitive information to Israel will have his story adapted for the big screen

Read More

Over 100 Jewish Gravestones Toppled in Philadelphia

August 01, 2015 | By Maria Cruz
Over 100 Jewish Gravestones Toppled in Philadelphia

Some of the headstones date back 160 years

Read More

Woody Allen Speaks Out About Netanyahu

August 01, 2015 | By Maria Cruz
Woody Allen Speaks Out About Netanyahu

The director thinks the Prime Minister's decision on Iran deal could be "foolish"

Read More

WATCH: Jon Stewart Addresses Uproar over his "Secret" Meeting with President Obama

July 30, 2015 | By Daina Goldfinger
WATCH: Jon Stewart Addresses Uproar over his "Secret" Meeting with President Obama

"Something is not a secret just because you don't know about it"

Read More

Canadian Couple: Killing Young Jews Will Save Them from Hell

July 30, 2015 | By B. Shane Morganstein
Canadian Couple: Killing Young Jews Will Save Them from Hell

The couple, convicted of trying to bomb the British Columbia Legislature, hoped to save Jews from growing up and going to "eternal hell"

Read More

WATCH: Viral Video of Israeli Father Shaving his Beard for First Time in 14 Years

July 30, 2015 | By B. Shane Morganstein
WATCH: Viral Video of Israeli Father Shaving his Beard for First Time in 14 Years

People are going crazy for this family's reaction to a man named Mooki shaving his beard

Read More

More Headlines