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In Final Interview, Günter Grass Warned Against 'War Everywhere'

German writer, who died on Monday, was known by some as the 'conscience of his generation.'

Nobel-award winning author and social critic Günter Grass, who died this week at the age of 87, said in his final interview that he worried humanity—now 15 years into the 21st century—could be "sleepwalking" into another world war.

"We have on the one side Ukraine, whose situation is not improving; in Israel and Palestine things are getting worse; the disaster the Americans left in Iraq, the atrocities of Islamic state and the problem of Syria," he told the Spanish newspaper El País in the interview, which took place at the author's home in northern Germany on March 21 and was published Tuesday, the day after his death.

"There is war everywhere; we run the risk of committing the same mistakes as before; so without realizing it we can get into a world war as if we were sleepwalking," he added, also expressing concern about climate change and overpopulation. 


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The novelist, poet, playwright, and essayist, who pushed his fellow Germans to confront even the most controversial aspects of their history, was known by some as the "conscience of his generation."

On Monday, the Guardian compiled a video of mourners paying tribute to the author:

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