Incendiary devices and rockets aimed at police officers and rescue workers, blasts in prohibited zones, almost 30 firecrackers injured – and a supermarket that burned down: Unfortunately, the hope for a peaceful New Year’s Eve in Berlin was only partially fulfilled this time!
At the turn of the year, the fire brigade only drove about half as many missions as in 2019/20. The Berlin police, on the other hand, say that they cannot draw an exclusively positive balance sheet, despite 2900 additional police officers being mobilized. “This year, too, there were unfortunately targeted attacks on police forces,” said a spokeswoman.
The worst happened on New Year’s morning in Neukölln, when officers from the 13th mission were attacked by a group of 50 with a Molotov cocktail and cobblestones on the corner of Hobrechtstrasse and Sanderstrasse. Fortunately, a second incendiary device thrown from the mob, which has now grown to 80 attackers, did not ignite.
► Unfallkrankenhaus Berlin reports 10 people seriously injured by firecrackers – man loses hand!
► Rescuers attacked by the police and fire brigade on New Year’s Eve
The perpetrators were able to flee. Kripo and the State Criminal Police Office closed the crime scene to secure evidence. It is under investigation for attempted manslaughter.
On the other hand, police arrested five suspects out of 60 on Brunnenstrasse in Mitte who had pelted fireworks at a police car. Attacks with pyrotechnics and targeted shots from alarm weapons on officials also occurred on Behmstrasse and Wollankstrasse in Gesundbrunnen.
Hostage: “again some unreasonable”
The police also had to intervene repeatedly in some of the 54 firefighting zones, including in Gropiusstadt, on Herrmannplatz in Neukölln and in the Märkisches Viertel (Reinickendorf). Here the police wrote reports for violations of the Weapons and Explosives Act and the Infection Protection Ordinance.
Berlin’s Senator for the Interior Andreas Geisel (54, SPD): “This time there were some unreasonable people again”. And further: “The police were present throughout the city, have consistently intervened in hot spots and enforced the rules.
With 862 missions from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m., including firecrackers, balcony and small fires, the Berlin fire brigade had significantly less New Year’s Eve stress than last year, when the helpers had to be deployed 1523 times. Ten people injured by explosive devices were admitted to the Berlin Accident Hospital alone. Parts of the hands were amputated in two patients.
The largest fire brigade operation with 110 people came on New Year’s morning because of a burning grocery discounter on Marienfelder Chaussee in Buckow. Here the flames of a dumpster had spread to the roof. Fireworks stored in the market made the extinguishing work more difficult.
The Berlin police received 2,765 emergency calls between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m., 300 fewer than in the previous year (3065).
KLess than a month after the first arrests in connection with the spectacular theft of jewels from the Green Vault in Dresden, the police arrested another wanted suspect. It is one of the twins from a well-known Berlin clan of Arab origin that was searched for internationally. The 21-year-old man was arrested in Berlin, said a spokesman for the situation center of the Dresden police on Monday.
The Berlin police confirmed that the arrest took place on Monday evening in the Neukölln district by a special task force (SEK). The “Bild” newspaper and the “BZ” had previously reported. According to the report, the man was caught in an apartment building on Jahnstrasse. Accordingly, he wanted to meet an acquaintance there and was targeted by the civil investigators. Further details should be announced on Tuesday. The search for the second twin continues.
On November 25, 2019, several perpetrators stole valuable jewels from the famous Grünes Gewölbe treasury in Dresden during one of the most spectacular break-ins of the past decades.
On November 17, the Dresden and Berlin police arrested three suspicious men aged 23, 23 and 26 from the extended family in a raid. They came into custody in Dresden.
However, the raid broke down: although the police had been watching them for a long time, the twins escaped the police that night. They were then searched for with their names and photos. All suspects are charged with aggravated gang theft and arson. According to the investigators, you belong to a Berlin clan. Members of the family were also convicted of other large crimes such as stealing gold coins from the Berlin Bode Museum in 2017.
The police receive praise for their efforts. The water cannons remained without pressure because there were children among the demonstrators. Is that correct?
Use of water cannons against corona deniers Photo: Paul Zinken
BERLINtaz | Shortly after 12 o’clock on Wednesday it began to rain between the Brandenburg Gate and the Reichstag. Two water cannons advanced on the crowd of corona deniers to disperse the previously dissolved gathering, from which the pressure on the police chain grew. For the Berlin police, the mission was something special. It has been over seven years since they last used their water cannons, during protests against an NPD march on May 1, 2013 in Schöneweide.
Five water cannons were in use for several hours on Wednesday. The fact that many demonstrators did not back down is due, on the one hand, to their radicalization – their delusional idea that the Infection Protection Act, which was passed in the Bundestag at the same time, would abolish fundamental rights.
On the other hand, the effect remained limited because the water cannons did not spray a hard jet, but instead let a rain shower over the crowd. Police spokesman Thilo Cablitz reasoned: “We cannot use the direct beam because there are children among them.”
In social media and Telegram groups, the child question dominated many discussions, which mainly knew two Poles: One was angry about a campaign against “peacefully demonstrating children and pensioners” as a further sign of an increasingly authoritarian state. The others accused the demonstrators of acting irresponsibly by even bringing children to such a demonstration, or writing that children had been “abused as protective shields”. Leftists pointed out that the police would crack down on their demos.
Many observers and journalists who reported directly on the protests were surprised at the reference to children. In the first rows there were mostly middle-aged men, some even with protective goggles and rain caps. Among them was a little who’s who of the right-wing scene: from Halle neo-Nazi Sven Liebich, who shouted: “Shoot the first rows dead”, to comradeship and ex-NPD member Thomas Wulff to Brandenburg AfD member Lars Günther.
Niklas Schrader, left
“London rain and not a Stuttgart jet”
Cablitz defended the action against the taz. At the beginning of the mission, a child of about ten years was in the front rows. That excludes the use of the hard jet, the effect of which he describes as “immense”. While the police acted directly against aggressive interferers in the first rows, a large area was irrigated. “There were parents who made fun of everyone being wet,” said Cablitz.
Benjamin Jendro, spokesman for the Berlin police union, spoke to the taz of a “difficult operation” because “thousands broke the rules”. He assessed the use of the water cannons as a “clear sign that the police had no other options” after they had not achieved any success with conditions, announcements and addresses to individuals.
Jendro also justified the moderate use of water cannons with children in the crowd. Attempts were made to disperse people in order to be able to “better select troublemakers”. In view of the danger for police officers of being infected in the crowd by people without mouth and nose protection, he repeated his demand for a temporary restriction of the permitted size of the gathering.
On the part of the domestic political spokesman for the Greens and the Left, there is also praise for the effort, as is the case from Interior Senator Geisel (SPD), who described the deployment as necessary. “Well done,” is the verdict of the green Benedikt Lux. It was right to proceed more consistently than in the last corona denier demos. “The police reacted very calmly, prudently and with a sense of proportion.” To break up the meeting was a backbreaking job, said Lux.
The leftist Niklas Schrader also saw the police much better prepared this time. When the water cannons came up, he had to swallow and think of the events on Black Thursday, the protest against the new Stuttgart 21 station, when a demonstrator lost a large part of his eyesight due to the hard beam. But: What came out of the water cannon nozzles on Wednesday, according to Schrader, was “London rain and not a Stuttgart jet”: “Seen in this way, the procedure was okay.”
A total of 2,500 police officers were on duty during the protests, 365 people were taken into custody, more than for a long time. Pre-trial detention is checked for two people on suspicion of serious breach of the peace. 77 out of 2,500 police officers were injured, three of whom were treated in hospital. A policewoman was kicked in the head.
Right-wing corona deniers want to take to the streets again on Sunday for a silent march that starts at 12 noon on Bornholmer Straße. Left groups have announced counter-protests.
On Sunday afternoon, walkers in Buch (Berlin-Pankow) found bones walking their dog and alerted the police.
The walkers found the bones around 4 p.m. in the Buchholzer Graben, as the police announced on Monday. Since it could not be ruled out that it could be human bones, the bones were secured by forensic medicine for further examinations.
► 30 men attack each other with knives, benches and shisha pipes
► Caught by accident – man was about to bury weapons and ammunition
A spokesman said the bones would now be analyzed. If the find were human bones, the medics would take DNA samples and compare them with missing persons. A specialist commissioner from the State Criminal Police Office took over the investigation.
► During a search with corpse tracking dogs, other smaller bone fragments were found. These pieces would also be examined by forensic medicine, said a police spokeswoman on Monday.
Berlin. After racist chats became known, six Berlin police students were suspended. You are not allowed to continue your education at the University of Law and Economics, as police spokesman Thilo Cablitz said of the German Press Agency. The university provides training for the higher and higher police forces. “We have a clear stance, it’s about character suitability for the police profession and it’s about loyalty to the constitution,” said the spokesman.
The public prosecutor is investigating seven suspects for alleged incitement to hatred. You are accused of having sent messages with inhuman content in a chat group with 26 members. The police have also initiated disciplinary proceedings against the suspected men and women. A police spokeswoman said on Monday that one person did not participate in the chats in such a serious way to be able to pronounce a ban on official business as the other six.
Also read: “In the beginning it was just a funny Hitler meme. Why even laypeople are now realizing that right-wing extremist attitudes among state authorities cannot be isolated cases. “
According to the public prosecutor’s office, individual notices in which swastikas are said to have been used were also directed against asylum seekers in a racist and contemptuous manner. The genocide of the Jews was played down in other news. A police officer reported the case. During searches the week before, smartphones were seized as evidence. At first, the students did not know each other personally because they had online lessons because of Corona, the spokeswoman said. dpa / nd
The police presented the evacuated Liebig 34 to the press as a “dirty hole”. A nauseating violation of the right to privacy.
Police officers in front of the vacated house in Berlin-Friedrichshain Photo: Fabian Sommer / dpa
The night before the evacuation, a policeman was standing on top of the roof of the Liebig 34 house project. Legs apart, arms stretched up, he apparently posed for the cameras of his colleagues on the neighboring roofs. A few hours later, officials were seen taking selfies in front of the house that had already been vacated. Sure, especially when it comes against an anarcha-queer-feminist project, it may be en vogue in the male-dominated police to demonstrate who has the longest. The photos should now be circulating in the police’s catchy chat groups.
Completely different images reached the public, also with the active help of the Berlin police. Their press spokesman led a group of journalists through the newly cleared house. Initially to show the barricades made of wood and concrete in the stairwell that his colleagues had to break into. So far okay, at least that explains the severity of the mission that has just ended.
But then the press was allowed to take pictures of kitchens and bedrooms, partly via live stream on the Internet, partly as photo documents. Later, it was not only the tabloid media that reported piqued about dirty dishes, leftover food in the kitchen and rotten mattresses.
The photos are actually disgusting. But for a completely different reason. Because here a lifestyle is deliberately disavowed. Here, through the power of the images, the assertion is made that the Liebig 34 is actually the “bastard”, as which it is denigrated by relevant right-wing groups on the Internet thanks to the steep submission of the police.
Not cleared because of the flush schedule
As if someone had expected that the residents would hand over their house to the bailiff, swept and ideally still freshly papered. That the house looked much more homely before the police operation, which had been announced for months, now show older pictures on Twitter.
But even if it should have been that the furnishing style in the Liebig 34 does not meet the demands of Beautiful living or the latest Ikea catalog. Even if the bathroom was not powdered aseptically with ecologically correct disinfectant every hour, as with the oh-so-clean neighbors. Is it anyone’s business? Is it the job of the police to allow such images? And above all: Is that a reason for putting people on the street?
No. No. And again no. The house was not vacated because the washing schedule in the communal kitchen was not followed or the bed linen did not have a clean bill of health. The house was not even cleared because there were repeated attacks against police officers, cars and other houses in the neighborhood. It was vacated because the value of property is valued by legislators and judges above the right to housing.
Right to privacy
That means: the condition inside the house was completely irrelevant for the police operation. If the police still actively ensure that pictures from the apartments are accessible to everyone, then this is solely for public excitement, so that the fine society can enjoy themselves in an orgasmic Ah-Oh-Ih moan.
So: it is on the verge of pornography. Funded by the Berlin police, who should actually know that even freshly evacuated maybe squatters still have a right to privacy.
These pictures make you blind. They distract from the actual scandal: In Germany, it is possible to put people outside the door, even after decades of using a house or apartment, if they stand in the way of an owner’s interest in returns. And that threatens many tenants, as well as the “dirty chaots” they are now pointing their fingers at.
The eviction of Liebig 34 shows that without democratic control of the housing market, it does not matter which parties are in government.
End of an alternative location: eviction of Liebig 34 Photo: Björn Kietzmann
With the evacuation of the Liebig 34 house project completed on Friday morning, Berlin is losing another place that has made the city so interesting since the fall of the Berlin Wall. The liveliness of Berlin never emanated from its office towers, townhouses or Mercedes-Benz squares, but from its open spaces, self-managed structures, its culture and politics from below. All of this has been destroyed for years, regardless of the government majority.
The anger of the residents and sympathizers of the Liebig 34, whose story has come to an end after more than 30 years, is understandable. Dozens of demonstrations, spectacular actions such as the ascent of Molecule-Man, alliances with the established cultural scene and persistent legal efforts are evidence of an unconditional commitment to the preservation of your project. All of this was unsuccessful. All that was left was anger.
But no state could be won with militant attacks on the police, real estate companies and party offices in advance. Except in the form of an even more martial mission that went beyond any comprehensible framework. The police went into the field as if to quell an armed uprising. In fact, it was able to keep the chaos announced for the eviction day within very limited framework. However, this is also due to the autonomists themselves, who are no longer as capable of acting as they were when the Mainzer Straße was cleared in the early 1990s.
The advance threat to use the SEK if necessary now seems even more absurd. But it was a border crossing that opened up the possibility of shooting demonstrators if necessary. Belarus can be closer than you think. Red-Red-Green bears political responsibility for this inappropriate state demonstration of violence.
error in the system
Nonetheless, the loss of Liebig 34, like the Syndikat pub before, is not due to the failure of the governing parties. The fact that nothing could be opposed to the eviction is an expression of the political and social inability to act in a private housing market. Where access to housing is left to private speculators, the state can only carry out the legally protected profit interests. When the market rules, it doesn’t matter who rules. For a democratic society that is a sign of poverty.
The answer to the mess can only be the strengthening of state and public welfare actors in the housing market. The largest and most radical approach is the popular initiative to expropriate Deutsche Wohnen and Co. The socialization of hundreds of thousands of apartments would be the democratic answer to the profit-driven destruction of the city. It may be the last chance that Berlin will remain interesting and lively in the future.
The radical left house project Liebig 34 has been cleared, residents waving as they leave. There were scuffles and arson in the area.
October 9, 2020: Demonstrators in front of Liebig 34 on the day of the eviction Photo: dpa / Fabian Sommer
BERLINtaz | The autonomous Liebig 34 house project was cleared 24 hours after the red zone was set up in the northern district of Berlin’s Friedrichshain district. Police officers first set up scaffolding in front of the house, from which a window was broken at around 7:20 a.m. Steel bars with which it was barred were flexed open. Inside, they apparently encountered other obstacles.
The police later drove up a cart. The first residents were brought out of the house through the window on the first floor. Only after two hours were the police ready to lead people out through the house entrance. Apparently the stairwell had been heavily barricaded. The use of flex devices could be heard from inside the house for hours. Axes were also used. According to the police, among other things, laid out beams had to be cleared away. Remnants of the wall and concrete were also piled up.
By 10 a.m., around 20 people were led out of the anarcha-queer-feminist house project. The eviction was apparently largely peaceful. Some of the evacuated waved to the supporters in the opposite houses as they left. A person in a rainbow-colored knitted hat proudly allowed himself to be led away by two officers. Others were taken away with their arms turned on their backs or carried up the entire Liebiegstrasse. Local residents and demonstrators accompanied them with applause.
The bailiff announced that he would be at 7 a.m. Up to 5,000 officials, including 19 hundreds from other federal states, were ready to go. It was probably the most complex and delicate evacuation in Berlin since 2011, when Liebigstrasse 14 opposite was cleared.
Parallel to the evacuation, there was a rally with several hundred participants within sight of the house project to confrontations with the police. When a protester lying on the ground was kicked by the police, a cluster formed around the officers. The police used heavy blows and pepper spray against the demonstrators; then bottles and stones flew.
In the course of the morning there was noticeable frustration among the eviction opponents. Again and again they were pushed back by the police for no apparent reason. The officers were numerically far superior, helmeted troops repeatedly attacked individuals from the crowd of demonstrators. For a short time, just under a dozen managed to block the intersection at Frankfurter Tor, but it did not take long before the police had the situation under control.
Meanwhile, residents from a house across from the Liebig 34 were playing a classic by Ton Steine Scherben. “The dream is over. But I will give everything to make it a reality, ”could be heard while some police officers had taken off their helmets on the street. The neighbors step up and play “police officers” from extra wide. “She will be with you day and night”. At least the music program is right that day.
There had been rallies against the eviction since the early morning. Around 5 a.m., a few hundred people had gathered on Rigaer Strasse within sight of the Liebig 34. A woman’s voice from the house project explained via megaphone: “We are not the problem. The problem is called capitalism. ”When the police went into the crowd and took two people out, the first bottles flew. Shortly afterwards the situation calmed down again.
Further east in the Rigaer fireworks rose into the sky, while in the hermetically sealed area in front of Liebig 34 only police could be seen – and the constant beating of pots from residents could be heard. Overall, according to the taz’s assessment, the protest is relatively small; hardly more than 1,000 people were out in the morning.
A bicycle demonstration with around 70 people also cycled through the neighborhood, the police followed. On Frankfurter Allee, the cyclists split up: inside. There was commotion, some people fell off their bikes. About twelve people were searched and detained by police officers, the others continued on their bikes.
In the southern part of Friedrichshain, around 6 a.m., small groups of masked people marched through the neighborhood, the police’s blue light was omnipresent. Burned on Wühlischstrasse a Mercedes and several garbage cans. Police officers secured the spot, but could only watch the flames spread. A resident with an empty fire extinguisher stood by, aghast, and asked: “Don’t they even want to turn that off?” Finally the fire brigade arrived and put out the fire. Meanwhile, in several places around the house smaller barricades erected.
Canan Bayram, the green member of the Bundestag for the constituency of Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg, had the impression after a first tour in the morning that the neighborhood was under siege. “I am amazed that such a police operation takes place under Covid-19 conditions,” Bayram told the taz. The Robert Koch Institute reported more than 4,500 newly infected nationwide in the morning, a new record. Bayram fears that as a result of this effort, many voters will lose confidence that something will fundamentally change under a red-red-green Senate in Berlin.
Liebigstrasse and part of Rigaer Strasse had already been open since Thursday so that the police could at least penetrate the house from the outside undisturbed has been declared a prohibited zonethat only residents are allowed to pass. Schools and daycare centers in the neighborhood will be closed on Friday. The mood in the Kiez had been spooky all Thursday: Wannen patrols were in deserted streets, police officers were posted on the roofs of the surrounding houses and the Liebig 34 itself. They partially stretched NATO wire there. In the meantime, the noises of cordless screwdrivers and hammers boomed from the colorful old Liebig 34 building.
Especially in the house project opposite at Liebigstrasse 15, the officials also went in and out on Friday morning to get to the roof. The irritated residents of the project, which belongs to a cooperative, had the impression that their attic had been converted into a command center.
No chance in court
In the legal struggle for the eviction, the residents of Liebig 34 suffered another defeat on Thursday. The Chamber Court rejected the application to suspend the enforcement of the eviction order for the time being.
After a ten-year lease had expired at the end of 2018, the house owner, the Berlin real estate speculator Gijora Padovicz, sued for eviction and was judged by the regional court at the end of August. According to Liebig 34 and its lawyers, the Raduga eV association, which was condemned to surrender, is no longer in possession of the rooms, but rather the former sub-tenant association Mittendrin eV – but no eviction title was issued against them.
When the eviction was already in progress and the police tried to break into the house, Lukas Theune, lawyer for the Mittendrin eV association, which currently owns the premises, was still waiting at the police cordon in northern Liebigstrasse. For 20 minutes they have been checking whether he can go in, Theune told the taz. Acting on the bailiff who has issued an eviction title against the Raduga e. V. has become impossible.
The Liebig 34 is considered a symbol in left-wing, anarchist and queer feminist circles and has mobilized the scene far beyond Berlin. It is criticized that a unique shelter will be omitted, that around 40 residents will be put on the street in the middle of the pandemic and that the gentrification of the neighborhood will proceed even faster without the resisting project. Left Berlin had declared its solidarity with the project, including the Greens in the district. A political solution, however, was not attempted to force and failed due to the unwillingness of the owner.
Collaboration: Jonas Wahmkow, Christina Gutsmiedl.
The Liebig 34 house project in Berlin is to be cleared. A press conference ended by the police gave a foretaste of it.
Demonstration for the Liebig 34 on Saturday Photo: dpa
BERLINtaz | Two hooded representatives of the anarcha-queer-feminist house project Liebig 34 sit on Tuesday morning in front of the brightly painted and banners-adorned old building on the corner of Rigaer Strasse in Berlin-Friedrichshain. It is the last attempt by the residents to present their view of the eviction announced for Friday morning at 7 a.m. – and the capital city press has appeared in large numbers.
A woman in a tiger costume describes the house occupied 30 years ago as a “shelter” for women, transgender people, refugees and those affected by sexual violence. The Liebig 34 is a “utopia” and its mere presence hinders the “displacement dynamics” in the neighborhood.
But what is a radical left-wing symbol for some is a thorn in the side of others. While residents’ attorney Moritz Heusinger answers questions from journalists, the police intervene. Officials seize the second Liebig-34 spokeswoman, who had recently worn a helmet with her crocodile costume, and lead her away. The charge: illegal protective armament. Lukas Theune, the second lawyer, castigates the “attack on freedom of the press”, then the press conference is over.
It’s a bizarre prelude to what lies ahead of Berlin in the next few days. For the autonomous scene in Berlin and far beyond, the planned eviction is a general attack on their self-determined structures, which must be prevented – or at least sink into chaos. For the police, it’s a scenario like the old May Day times.
The red-red-green Senate, on the other hand, has days ahead of it, which will bring criticism from the left and applause from the wrong side. And for the residents, many of whom show solidarity with the left, the eviction means an exceptional situation, including a red zone, as well as the closure of a primary school and half a dozen daycare centers.
The scenario had emerged since the end of 2018, when a ten-year lease between the property speculator Gijora Padovicz and the residents expired, but they did not move out voluntarily. The legal battle ended in August with an eviction order from the regional court.
But according to lawyer Heusinger, who appealed to the higher court, the Raduga e. V. no longer owns the rooms, but the former sub-tenant association Mittendrin e. V. – but no eviction notice was issued against this. The lawyers want to convey their view of the “illegal eviction” to the bailiff on Friday. Janko E., chairman of the Mittendrin association, confirmed this in an interview with the taz.
Meanwhile, the radical left are preparing to make operations more difficult with “targeted chaos”, that is, attacks on the infrastructure. Preventing the evacuation, for example through blockades, does not seem very promising to them. An attack on cable systems was carried out on Monday morning, which still severely restricted S-Bahn traffic in the east of the city on Tuesday. Statements by Liebig 34 and those around them, in their irreconcilability towards state structures and their open calls for militancy, seem like holdovers from the weddings of the autonomous people.
Together with Rigaer Straße 94, two doors down, Liebig 34 forms the last autonomous stronghold in the city. At the Rigaer- / Liebigstrasse intersection, known as the “Dorfplatz”, confrontation with the permanently present police is almost everyday. The fight for one’s own whereabouts in the middle of a predominantly gentrified quarter is vocal, often with property damage.
But there is no longer any mass militancy, as was the case with the evacuation of the occupied houses in Mainzer Strasse in 1990. A demonstration for the Liebig 34 on Saturday took place with a lot of pyrotechnics, but without riots.
However, the police have significantly increased their originally planned number of 2,500 officers, with 19 hundreds coming from other federal states to reinforce them. According to one in the tabloid B.Z. quoted high-ranking state security officers, one wants to “also call in special units from LKA 6” in a worsening situation – we are talking about special task forces that are located in the corresponding department of the State Criminal Police Office.
It is a scenario like the 2017 G20 summit in Hamburg, when heavily armed SEK commands cleared the Schanzenviertel. The left wing’s domestic political spokesman in the House of Representatives, Niklas Schrader, said at the request of the taz: “I don’t see any signs that would justify a SEK deployment,” after all, you are not dealing with armed terrorists.
While 34 rotating cordless screwdrivers can be heard from the Liebig to barricade the house, it is quiet in the political arena. Neither Interior Senator Andreas Geisel (SPD) can win anything with tough announcements, nor can the district member of the Bundestag in solidarity with the residents, Canan Bayram (Greens), achieve much. The decisive battle will be waged by the police and the left alone.
The more known about the right-wing extremist filth, the better. The truth is bitter, but politics can no longer avoid it.
Right structures in the police: new “individual case” now also in Berlin Photo: dpa
BERLINtaz | So now Berlin also has its right-wing extremist chat group. Like the ARD magazine Monitor Reported on Thursday, 25 police officers from a Berlin police station wrote each other messages for over three years, sometimes with blatant racist agitation. The whole field of right-wing extremist clichés was apparently served: the “large population exchange” by refugees, unchecked hatred of the left, the most primitive violent fantasies against “foreigners”. To be frank: after North Rhine-Westphalia, Hesse and all the other police scandals of recent times, this should not surprise anyone. The “individual cases” are now so numerous that you can almost lose track of them.
On the one hand, this is deeply frightening: The nightmare in which people who visibly think and look different have always lived and in which the police are not your friends but the (armed and powerful) enemy is reality. And regularly. There is not just one police officer or two, so that one could legitimately speak of exceptions, as politics and police leaderships and unions always do. The error is “in the system”, as this case also shows. Even those who don’t think like their right-wing extremist colleagues shut up. Not even the chief of the troop, who apparently knew about it, has put an end to the hustle and bustle.
On the other hand, such revelations are also encouraging: after all, it was two Berlin police officers who stank the matter so much that they “leaked” the chat logs and Monitor willingly give information about the racist everyday life on their guard. So there are (after all) the democratically minded law enforcement officers – even if they wanted to remain anonymous for fear of the corps spirit of their colleagues.
And even if police scandals are usually not uncovered by internal whistleblowers but in the course of investigations: there is reason for hope. Because the more of the dirt that comes to light, the greater the willingness of people to speak about it – be they victims of racist police violence or witnesses.
Every scandal encourages those affected and witnesses to speak
At least that is how it is in the general debate about (everyday) racism and discrimination in society: The public awareness of the topic in recent months has encouraged more and more BPoC (Black and People of Color) to report on their experiences and no longer to put up with everything. And it encourages members of the white majority society to take a critical look at their own racisms and prejudices.
And with each new revelation about racist structures in the police, the moment inevitably draws nearer when politics and police leaders can no longer come up with excuses. The truth is ugly. But all of us – including the middle class, who has so far defended their law enforcement officers – must finally look their faces.