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Helmut Kohl's family also quarreling after death

Wednesday, August 30th, 2017 | World News

How does it continue with the legacy of Helmut Kohl? This question concerns many people who know about the difficult family situation of the old chancellor. His son Walter has now answered these and other questions.

Kohl's material legacy had been decided before the court during the lifetime of the old Chancellor. "In 2016 (…), on the initiative of my brother, we also obtained legal clarification from the district court Frankenthal," said the 54-year-old at the ZDF talkshow "Markus Lanz". "Everything has been cleared up, the subject of inheritance in the family is complete."

Helmut Kohl had died on 16 June at the age of 87 years. Walter Kohl had learned from the radio about the death of his father, to whom he had previously had no contact for years. For his attention, shortly after his death, his visits to the house of Kohl, to which he was not admitted, took place.

  Helmut Kohl with his sons at the funeral of his wife Hannelore. (Source: Martin Athenstädt / dpa)

The older of the two Kohl sons made a tidy and sometimes happy impression during the 30-minute conversation with moderator Lanz, but sometimes also moved. It had been difficult times, but now he was well again, he said.

 "For me, it is important that today, ten weeks later, I can say: He is dead, and this death is ok." He said good-bye to his father's deathbed, and said, "Papa, we'll meet again somewhere else."

"We have nothing more that connects us"
For Maike Kohl-Richter, the widow of the old Chancellor, he found no positive words. Exclusion, delimitation, control – that is their behavior. Each of them had his own family and his own ideas about life. "We have nothing more that connects us, or where touch points are, except for two or three subjects, and that is perhaps quite good."

Witwe Maike Kohl-Richter at the funeral ceremonies for old Chancellor Kohl. (Source: Boris Roessler / dpa)

With regard to the classification and processing of Kohl's political heritage, the son said that he wanted "a foundation that is – very important – neutral, objective, outside all family members". Neither he, nor his brother or Maike Kohl-Richter should play a part in this foundation, "it should be suspended in a neutral state place – example, the Bundesarchiv (…) – it should be supported by experts, historians, Objective people, "he added. The complete documentation should be available openly and publicly – as with the former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.

Quarrel about tomb in Speyer
"That is exactly what I wish for my father's legacy – and, of course, for the legacy of my mother, for without my mother my father would never have become who he is," said Walter Kohl. Kohl-Richter's lawyer, Stephan Holthoff-Pförtner, announced in June the foundation of his own foundation for the estate.

He was able to unite Germany, his family remained disputed: old Chancellor Helmut Kohl. (Source: Ulrich Perrey / dpa)

Walter Kohl also defended his decision not to participate in the funeral of his father in Speyer. In his opinion, the father should have been buried in Ludwigshafen in the family grave, in which, among other things, his first wife was lying, Walter Kohl said. The fact that he was not part of Speyer was "no refusal to my father", that it was "a rejection of the situation". He criticized the grave in Speyer, which is currently surrounded by a green metal fence and is monitored with a video camera.

"I find it unworthy of my father," he said. "But I also find it honest with regard to the behavior of Maike: this exclusion, delimitation, control, which is very good." He himself had chosen for himself: "I will never die and be buried."

Maike Kohl-Richter replied that she was "not interested in a contact". For years the brothers had not been able to call Kohl at Ludwigshafen-Oggersheim, they had always been passed directly to Kohl's office in Berlin. "My brother has once seen a funny scene," said Walter Kohl. "He called, and then it was again: no information, no information, no information, and then my brother asked: Say: Can you tell me how much time it is in Berlin? , Replied Kohl, laughing.


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