Does this step achieve its goal? “Stern” and Gruner Jahr have decided to award the “Nannen Prize” once in the coming week as a “Stern Prize”. This is intended to defuse the debate about Henri Nannen’s Nazi past. According to a press release on Friday, the publisher and “Stern” also want to appoint a committee that will advise on the future use of the name for the prize and also for the Henri Nannen School.
“The committee should include well-known journalists as well as students from the Henri Nannen School and the RTL School of Journalism.” Based on the knowledge gained, “Stern” and Gruner Jahr want to decide by the end of 2022 how to proceed in the future.
A preliminary decision could be made as early as next week, because in the new issue of “Stern” wants to deal in detail with the current allegations against Henri Nannen. In May, a report in the research format “STRG_F” by Norddeutscher Rundfunk about details on Henri Nannen’s Nazi past initiated the debate.
Nannen was a war correspondent in a propaganda company in the Luftwaffe during World War II. The new discussion focuses in particular on the question of whether and how Henri Nannen was involved in the production of anti-Semitic leaflets.
Gregor Peter Schmitz, Editor-in-Chief of “Stern”, said after the award ceremony next week “we will take the time for a calm and conscientious consultation on how to deal properly with our founder. In addition, in the coming year we will be dealing more intensively with the early years of ‘Stern’.” This is not a dismantling and certainly not a campaign, but a basic virtue of journalism: getting to the bottom of things.