Predictably, the 70th anniversary of the outbreak of the second world war provoked a few rhetorical skirmishes this week between Russia, Poland and Poland’s western allies. It reminded me of an unusual evening that I spent in 1989 in Waldkirchen, a small town in southern Germany near the Czech border, on the 50th anniversary of the war.
I was the guest of a German friend who in her youth, when I was a young boy, had lived as an au pair with my family in the UK. She had spent months walking me to school, taking me swimming, reading me stories and fixing meals for me. As we grew up, we stayed in touch, and now I was staying the night with her and her husband in Waldkirchen. Read more