Just as intense was our visit to Memorium Nurnberger Prozesse- Courtroom 600 (location of of the Nurnberg trials following World War II) and to the Dokumentationszentrum Reichsparteitagsgelande (Documentation Center Nazi Rally Grounds). Seeing the site where the United States played such an instrumental part in the Nurnberg Trials gave me such pride in my country for helping to bring to justice so many war criminals. Walking the same rally grounds where Hitler hosted rallies consisting of more than 100,000 party members chilled me to the bones.
An interesting question has been posed to the German people and subsequently posed to our group: What do you do with the large buildings, specifically this 11 acre Nazi party rally site, that have a difficult history? Do you demolish them? Do you memorialize them? Do you turn them into a museum? Do you repurpose them? The 11 acre site was considered a sacred site by Hitler to be used once a year. The Germans have decided that it would be far too expensive to demolish the site so they have determined to use it in a way that would have offended Hitler: for rock concerts, as a public park, for wedding pictures, car races, football--ANYTHING to show that it is NOT a sacred space.
I am in awe at how willing the German people are to deal with their past while moving forward.