Trump’s statements on election night: Unsubstantiated threat

The US President cannot simply turn to the Supreme Court. In any case, Republican plaintiffs have so far had little success on election campaign issues.

Trump and his supporters have to wait. The president has no right to stop the count Photo: John Locher / ap

BERLIN taz | It was already after 2 a.m. when US President Donald Trump stepped in front of the cameras in the White House and commented with anger and a certain astonishment on the ongoing counting of votes: He was leading so clearly in a number of the particularly hotly contested states, that no one could catch up with him – that must finally be recognized: “To be clear: We won this election!”

The further counting must stop, and: “We will call the Supreme Court” to enforce this and to prevent a “great fraud against our nation”. “We don’t want anyone to find votes at 4 a.m. and add them to the result.” Trump added that this was “a very sad moment.”

At this point in time, no TV station and the Associated Press, which has always been authoritative, had declared a winner in the presidential election. Only partial results were available from the decisive states such as Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin. Everyone was aware that, because of the record turnout and the high percentage of postal votes, a result of the election would by no means be certain on election evening.

And so Trump’s appearance caused a storm of indignation among commentators and politicians: even from Trump’s own party, and with a delay also from abroad.

Biden warns

Trump’s competitor Joe Biden appeared in front of his supporters shortly before Trump’s speech in his hometown of Wilmington: inside, who were giving horns in their cars. He sounded confident, although the interim results didn’t look nearly as positive as the polls had predicted: “We believe we are on the way to winning this election,” said Biden.

But he warned: “Neither I nor Donald Trump can announce who has won the election. This is the decision of the citizens of America. ”Biden’s campaign director Jen O’Malley Dillon called Trump’s speech“ outrageous, unprecedented and wrong ”.

Trump’s remarks once again called the country’s democratic institutions into question. He had repeatedly railed against the postal vote because it was particularly prone to fraud – for which there is no empirical evidence. Politicians of his party sued more than 300 times in court in order to change the electoral procedure or to limit the options, for example by in some states not being allowed to take into account votes received after election day.

In Texas, according to the will of Republican plaintiffs, 120,000 votes allegedly cast by Democratic voters in so-called drive-in polling stations were to be declared invalid. Clearly recognizable in all of the lawsuits was the ulterior motive of making an election victory more difficult, especially for candidates for the Democrats. All major lawsuits were dismissed by the courts.

Much too early to decide

Trump’s proposed motion to have the Supreme Court stop the count early is also likely to remain unsuccessful. For one thing, it has long been standard and good democratic practice to count all votes cast according to the rules.

It often takes several weeks for states to report their official final results to Washington. The votes of military personnel stationed abroad are also only counted later.

But above all, Trump as President has no legal powers to intervene in the election process. According to the constitution, the election of the president is a matter for the states.

That is why it is only from there that legal action can be taken against the course of an election. Only when local judges have decided on the lawsuit is it possible to appeal to the Supreme Court.


Halle trial – defendant fully culpable – politics

The psychiatric report, which is of decisive importance in the Halle trial, certifies that the defendant Stephan B. is fully responsible. “An impairment of the guilty capacity from a psychiatric point of view is not to be assumed,” said the forensic psychiatrist employed in court.

It is true that he diagnosed the defendant with a severe complex personality disorder as well as signs of paranoia and autism. The man’s ability to control and his awareness of injustice were not impaired, the expert concluded. Both points are crucial for assessing the culpability.

In contrast to delusional offenders, the accused planned his act meticulously and was able to wait for an occasion that seemed favorable to him to start the attack. This is what perpetrators who act in a delusional manner are unable to do so.

The defendant did not show any insight or even regret, said the psychiatrist, who spoke to and examined the defendant for about twelve hours during his pre-trial detention. It is therefore more likely than not that the man would commit similar acts again if he were able to.

On this basis, in the event of a guilty verdict, the court could impose preventive detention after imprisonment. The attack has been going on since July.

Stephan B. shot two people

On October 9, 2019, a heavily armed man tried to storm the synagogue in Halle in order to cause a massacre on the highest Jewish holiday, Yom Kippur. After he did not get into the house of God, he shot a 40-year-old passerby and shortly afterwards a 20-year-old in a kebab shop.

The 28-year-old German Stephan B. confessed to the crimes and justified them with anti-Semitic, racist conspiracy theories. The trial is running before the Naumburg Higher Regional Court, but takes place in Magdeburg due to lack of space.


MAD officer in court (Junge Welt newspaper)

Lieutenant Colonel Peter W. from the Military Counter-Intelligence Service (MAD) in front of the Cologne District Court on Thursday

Not only among the elite warriors of the Special Forces Command (KSK) there is a lot of trouble. Secret service and police authorities also stand in the way of solving various scandals in the troops. This impression was made on Thursday in front of the Cologne district court, where an appeal against Lieutenant Colonel Peter W. from the Military Counter-Intelligence Service (MAD) is being tried for treason. According to the public prosecutor’s office, W. is said to have warned Sergeant André S. about the search of the Graf Zeppelin barracks of the KSK in Calw by the Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) on September 15, 2017. S. is the leader of the “Hannibal” network and co-founder of the ultra-right association “Uniter”. In the first instance before the Cologne district court, the MAD man was acquitted in March 2019. The public prosecutor immediately appealed.

The 44-year-old, a tall, stocky guy in uniform with a surprisingly winning smile, was at the MAD with the investigation into the case of the extreme right-wing soldier Franco Albrecht. Albrecht had posed as a Syrian refugee and is said to have planned attacks in order to then blame refugees. As part of the investigation against Albrecht, he was the BKA contact person at the MAD, said W. in court. In this capacity, he also learned of a survey of three KSK members planned for September 15, 2017 by the police authorities. André S. and two other KSK men should be questioned. The accused said he had no knowledge that a raid was planned.

W. admitted, however, that he had met S. two days before the BKA action in a hotel in Sindelfingen, although the Federal Prosecutor General (GBA) and BKA were strictly against the MAD continuing to investigate the Albrecht case because of the missing results . The MAD didn’t do that either, as the 44-year-old assured with a smile. Rather, his order was to “obtain information” with a view to a farewell party for a KSK company commander, “which is said to have gone haywire”. At the celebration in April 2017, elite warriors from the now defunct Second Company are said to have shown the Hitler salute, heard right-wing rock and played bizarre games such as pig’s head throwing.

At breakfast in the hotel, S. let it be known that he already knew about the upcoming survey on Friday. His company commander said to him: “There are officials coming. We should be ready, “W. repeated the conversation. S. also said: “I know that it is about Franco Albrecht and the investigations of the GBA.” S. wanted the information from an “informant, a Uniter member of the GBA”. S. did not mention who this “informer” was. At the GBA, in turn, this allegation was “not yet known” – a spokesman for the Federal Prosecutor’s Office was dated Thursday HIGH-Portal quoted. S. could not yet be questioned in court in this case. He was missing “due to illness,” as the presiding judge Sylvia Sella-Geusen announced on Thursday.

Instead of S., his former KSK comrade Robert P. turned the big wheel on the witness stand: He stated that S. had informed him and another soldier about it four days before the planned questioning by officials in Calw. In addition, the MAD had withdrawn from the Franco Albrecht case due to a lack of investigation results, and from now on the BKA would take over “for political reasons,” S. said. The minister of justice at the time, Heiko Maas (SPD), was the puller who wanted to plunge the CDU-led Defense Ministry into a scandal by exposing “the largest right-wing network in the Bundeswehr.” And why? Because the SPD wanted to win the upcoming federal election a good week later on September 24th. The trial is ongoing and a verdict is due to be pronounced in mid-November.


Wave of arrests in Turkey (Junge Welt newspaper)

HDP protest against the arrest of local politicians surrounded by the police on October 21, 2019 in Diyarbakir

There was a large wave of arrests in Turkey on Wednesday, directed against activists of the radical left. At least 93 people were arrested in twelve provinces on the instructions of an Istanbul public prosecutor, the state news agency reported Anatolia on Thursday. 27 people who were posted for arrest are still wanted. Loud Anatolia the police operation is directed against the left-wing radical Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party Front (DHKP-C). The arrested are said to hold high positions in the militant underground organization and to have planned attacks.

Among those arrested are the lawyer Seda Saraldi, the two musicians of the popular political folk band Grup Yorum, Metin Kaleli and Yasar Coskun, and several activists who fought for their reinstatement in the public service after politically motivated redundancies.

The “People’s Legal Office”, which represents several of the arrested, criticized the fact that it had not been informed about the allegations against its clients for reasons of “confidentiality” ordered by the public prosecutor’s office. Two Grup Yorum members and an imprisoned lawyer had died earlier this year as a result of hunger strikes to protest political persecution for alleged DHKP-C membership.

In Istanbul, Sanliurfa, Adiyaman and Diyarbakir, five members of the People’s Democratic Party (HDP), which is mainly anchored among Kurds, were arrested on Wednesday. They are accused of being involved in an attack in Iskenderun, a city in the southern Turkish province of Hatay, in which a militant blew himself up on Monday after a gun battle at a police checkpoint. So far, nobody has committed to the action. But the provincial governor accused members of the Syrian-Kurdish People’s Defense Units YPG of having flown in a mini helicopter from the Syrian city of Manbij to the Amanos Mountains of Hatay. This unbelievable story is supposed to serve to justify another military intervention threatened by the Turkish government in the northern Syrian self-government area.


US Supreme Court for absentee voting

In the corona crisis, more Americans than usual cast their votes in the presidential election by letter. But nobody really knows how quickly the election documents will arrive. Now the Supreme Court has dealt with the issue of postal voting.

The US Supreme Court has mailed ballots counted in two major states that arrive after the November 3rd election. In Pennsylvania, postal ballot papers should still be valid if they arrive up to three days later. It’s even nine days in North Carolina. The Supreme Court now put this decision in effect. President Donald Trump and Republicans want only ballots delivered by November 3rd to be counted.

In view of the corona pandemic, significantly more Americans vote by letter than usual. At the same time it is unclear how long the letters could take after, among other things, austerity measures at the US Post. There are already disputes in several states, further proceedings could follow.

In North Carolina, the electoral authority had extended the deadline for the arrival of ballots from three to nine days. An appeals court declared that to be admissible. The Supreme Court now voted for this decision with a majority of five to three votes.

Berett not involved in the decision

In the case of Pennsylvania, the Supreme Court initially only denied a motion by the Republicans to expedite their lawsuit against the three-day time limit. However, this means that it remains in force for the time being. However, three conservative judges expressly kept it open to take up the case again after the election.

Pennsylvania and North Carolina are among the contested states that could make the choice. In Pennsylvania it is about 20 electorates, in North Carolina it is 15. To win the presidential election you have to get 270 voters.

The Supreme Court’s decisions on cases involve complex considerations of whether state or local and federal courts can rule on issues surrounding the election. According to polls, the Democrats who support Trump’s challenger Joe Biden are more likely than Republicans to vote by mail. At the same time, many states offer the opportunity to vote in a polling station before November 3rd or to drop your ballot papers in collection boxes.

The newly appointed judge Amy Coney Barrett stayed out of both decisions. You didn’t have enough time to familiarize yourself with the documents, said a spokeswoman for the Supreme Court New York Times on Wednesday. Barrett had only been sworn in on Tuesday. The Democrats, who failed to resist their appeal, generally demand that they not take part in decisions on the upcoming presidential election.

President Donald Trump had particularly emphasized that he wanted to occupy the vacant seat at the Supreme Court, especially with a view to possible proceedings relating to the counting of votes before the election date on November 3rd. The conservative majority in the Supreme Court grew with Barrett to six of the nine seats.

dpa / acr / LTO editorial team


Erdoğan’s leader state: Diary of a Turkish exile

Kurdish civilians are pushed out of the helicopter. Journalists who report on it are criminals. And the medical board? Full of “traitors”.

On October 18 in Sirnak: AKP leader Erdogan is greeted Foto: Murat Kula/Anadolou agency/picture alliance

20. September

I looked at wedding photos. Attorney General Yüksel Kocaman got married at the Sheraton in Ankara. The Chairman of the Court of Cassation, the Minister of Justice, the Minister of the Interior, the Chief of Staff, the Chairman of the Election Commission and many, many other important men were guests. The honeymoon before the wedding was already present in the media: by helicopter to the tourist coastal town of Bodrum, where you stayed in a hotel that costs 1,000 euros per night.

After the wedding, we went to the presidential palace. Tayyip Erdoğan in the middle of the bride and groom. The photo session with the president is wedding present enough. But how can a chief prosecutor, who in the past behaved like the tyrant’s devoted lackey anyway, top it off with thanks? More arrests, more state terrorism? Why do I now remember a sentence from Interior Minister Soylu, who was also the best man at the wedding? “You cannot compare us to Hitler. We didn’t kill anyone in gas chambers. “

The Mesopotamian News Agency, whose website is blocked in Turkey, reports an incident that happened nine days ago. In a village in Van Province, the villagers were rounded up by soldiers and had to kneel down. Two men, 55-year-old Servet Turgut and 50-year-old Osman Şiban, were taken away in a military helicopter. It was only days later that relatives were able to find them in a hospital several hundred kilometers from the village.

Disfigured their bodies, they are in the hospital. “My father has 11 broken bones, hemorrhages and cracks in his lungs,” says Turgut’s son. The men were pushed down by the helicopter. The sentence is inhuman, but true: “No cock crows at any poor Kurdish farmers.”

25. September

The exclusive honeymoon, the pompous wedding and the photo shoot with the president are bearing fruit. In the early hours of the morning, police counter-terrorism units struck. 82 top officials of the HDP (Democratic Party of the Peoples) were arrested. Among them the mayor of the city of Kars, Ayhan Bilgen, and the former MP Sırrı Süreyya Önder, who once worked with the government on a peace plan for the Kurdish question.

According to prosecutors, the arrests are linked to the October 2014 events in which 46 people died. The Kurdish border town of Kobani in Syria was about to be captured by the jihadists of the “Islamic State”. Tayyip Erdoğan celebrated the impending fall of the city with relish. The Kurds in Turkey were in an uproar and the HDP called for mass protest.

Those arrested are likely to spend years in custody, like the former leader of the party, Selahattin Demirtaş. The most brilliant politician Turkey has ever seen has been in prison for four years. “Membership in an armed terrorist organization” is the charge. The HDP received almost 12 percent of the vote in the last parliamentary elections. Perhaps the Fiihrer will have it banned. Thousands of party officials are behind bars anyway.

29. September

An opposition MP has published an internal official document on corona cases in Turkey. It is a detailed inventory of September 10th – number of approved tests, test results, etc. According to this, 29,377 people tested positive for Corona on this day. That is twenty times what was officially announced. The daily announcement by the Ministry of Health speaks of 1,512 people who tested positive for this day.

I spoke to my mother on the phone. “These villains lie,” she keeps saying. “You lie about everything. Why shouldn’t they lie about the corona cases? ”In the past few months, mayors, doctors and hospital staff who were confronted with the consequences of the virus on site had repeatedly questioned the official statements.

October 1

The daily newspaper spokesman has documented the strange transformation of a German textbook for 9th grade students. In the old edition of the year there is a map of Germany with “typically German” symbols. For example the Brandenburg Gate, the Frauenkirche in Dresden, the Cologne Cathedral, a car, a woman in a dirndl. A wine glass, a beer mug and the Oktoberfest are also represented. “Researched! What information can you find about Germany? Discuss your results in class! ”Says the textbook. The beer mug, wine glass and Oktoberfest have now been eliminated in the new edition. There are now white spots there thanks to Photoshop experts at the Department of Education.

Anyone who makes beer glasses disappear from school books in the national interest can certainly also manipulate corona case numbers. “In the fight against the pandemic, our state must protect not only the health of the population, but also national interests,” tweeted Health Minister Fahrettin Koca. Before that, he gossiped at a press conference. At some point it was decided to no longer disclose the number of cases of infected people, but only those of the sick who show symptoms. Even the Scientific Council he set up to combat the pandemic did not know that.

Neither did the World Health Organization, which included the Turkish numbers as daily infection cases in their statistics. There was also no indication of the change in the basis of the survey on the website of the Ministry of Health: There was talk of “infections”, not “sick people with symptoms”.

What’s the point of the medical association protesting? In any case, her explanation does not appear in the media that are in line. The Medical Association has appealed to the government dozens of times to handle data transparently. In cooperation with scientists, she wrote detailed reports on the development of the pandemic. On a day of action in September, doctors and nurses protested against the government’s failure with a black cord.

The synchronized media, however, spread the statement by Devlet Bahçeli, chairman of the Nationalist Action Party, the most important partner and supporter of President Tayyip Erdoğan: “Because of an alleged increase in corona cases, the band of traitors called the Medical Association wants to wear black cords. This is a poisonous and humiliating plot. The Turkish Medical Association is as dangerous as the coronavirus. “

I looked up the meaning of “delirium” in the Duden dictionary: “Clouding of consciousness that manifests itself in confusion and delusions.” I wonder whether only individuals can fall into delirium. Or even entire societies?

A court in Van has issued a ban. In view of the ongoing investigations, it is not allowed to report on the Kurdish farmers thrown from the military helicopter. One of the men, Servet Turgut, is now dead.

October 6th

The four journalists who investigated the drop from the helicopter for eyewitness and medical reports were arrested. A question of time, when they will be tried for “supporting a terrorist organization”.

October 13

The daily newspaper calendar headline: “Our words to the constitutional court member Engin, whose face resembles an assassin’s whiner: You will dangle on the gallows of this flagpole”. The Constitutional Court had conceded the judgment of a criminal chamber against Enis Berberoğlu, an opposition MP. For once in history, the criminal chamber refused to obey the judgment of the Constitutional Court. Engin Yıldırım, one of the chief judges, tweeted a night photo of the Constitutional Court with the text “Our lights are on” after the judgment received.

Yıldırım, a conservative who was appointed constitutional judge in the Erdoğan era, was then referred to as a “coupist”. “Our lights are always on,” says the Interior Ministry’s official Twitter account. The poor man. That he deleted the tweet and apologized will be of little use to him. Someone tweeted: “We are prisoners of violent pornography.”

The daily newspaper calendar belongs to the Turkuaz media group, led by the brother of Tayyip Erdoğan’s son-in-law, Berat Albayrak, who is in turn finance minister. The media group Turkuaz (in the pool are the Turkish editions of Esquire, Cosmopolitan, Bazaar, House Beautiful and many more) belongs to the Kalyon construction company. The group that always wins public tenders.

I think I remember that the company made it world famous. Google, World Bank website: Private participation in infrastructure 1990–2019. Kalyon is one of the top ten companies in the world that have implemented public infrastructure contracts. Four are from Turkey, all of them linked to Tayyip Erdoğan.

October 14th

Erdoğan rages against the medical association. “How can we entrust our sick to them. How can we expect recovery? Can we expect that from terrorists? ”I think of Şebnem Korur Fincancı. She is the chairwoman of the Medical Association. An extraordinary woman. Professor of Forensic Medicine. She has contributed to the constitution of the United Nations standard work on the investigation and documentation of torture. In 1996 she was involved in the exhumation of mass graves and autopsies for the International Criminal Court in Bosnia.

She was able to prove murder and torture in the Philippines and Bahrain. She was once the head of the forensic medicine department. She was able to convict the head of the organized crime department of torture. It documented the murder of the trade unionist Süleyman Yeter. Many international awards, in Germany the Hessian Peace Prize. A few years ago we were waiting in front of an Istanbul prison for her to be released from custody. It only seems a matter of time before the medical board will be smashed.

15th October

Özer Sencar, professor and head of the Metropoll polling institute, is a trustworthy source. In an interview, he said that President Erdoğan’s party always had a voter approval between 30 and 35 percent. The party that has ruled Turkey for 18 years never sagged below 30 percent. The approval for Tayyip Erdoğan is significantly above this percentage. How can that be in view of the catastrophic development, the decline of the lira, impoverishment and mismanagement in the corona crisis?

Are nationalism, religious slogans, an expansionist and aggressive foreign policy enough to cover it all up? The professor, a man of empiricism, statistics and numbers, gives an answer that is actually inappropriate: “It is the belief in Tayyip Erdoğan.” The belief. It’s like gambling: once you’ve bet on a horse, there’s no going back. Even in the face of disaster, one does not want to admit mistakes. After all, Turkey is on the way to becoming a great power.


“Class justice does not decide pro anti-fascists” (daily newspaper Junge Welt)

imago images / Arnulf Hettrich

Demonstration against nationalism in Stuttgart (May 19, 2019)

The Stuttgart district court sentenced an anti-fascist, known in local circles as “Findus”, to a prison term of two years and six months. Did you expect such a severe punishment?

At least it didn’t surprise us. The court has passed several exaggerated judgments against people from the anti-fascist movement in recent years. “Findus” were charged with several crimes over a period of around two years, including assaulting a police officer, attempted assault and trespassing. During a Nazi rally in Pforzheim he is said to have tried to pull a police officer into his own ranks. As with other allegations, however, the evidence was very thin. In another case, protests against a morning pint from fraternities, in which “Findus” was involved, was processed as follows: Anyone who resisted the rights that were beating up at the time was reported afterwards.

Another accusation against “Findus”: coercion against the AfD city councilor Olaf Barth from Villingen-Schwenningen as part of protests against an event of the party. Downright ridiculous! In spite of decades of experience in the Bundeswehr, Barth once worked as an individual combat instructor, felt threatened “with his life” by what he said was a boy who was 1.60 meters tall. Barth came to the trial with two bodyguards who, unlike all other court observers, were not checked by the judicial officers.

Do you see this as evidence that there are entanglements between the judiciary and right-wing circles?

At least it is noticeable that everyone who wanted to accompany the proceedings in solidarity was searched and scanned and their cell phones were taken away. On the first day of the trial, there were arguments because judicial officers took pen and paper from a comrade. The question arises as to why the AfD attendants were allowed to bring mobile phones and writing utensils into the meeting room on the penultimate day of the trial, contrary to the court order. After the lawyer from “Findus” complained in court that there were double standards, the judicial security service told the judge that the companions of the AfD city council had to hand over weapons or weapon-like objects during an initial inspection. The officer checking the hall again spoke of a mistake, he had taken the people for police officers.

Incidentally, the bodyguards of the AfD man were apparently so well known to the public prosecutor that she went to lunch with them. That observed trial attendants who were standing in front of the court at the time.

The antifascist’s attorney has filed a regulatory complaint. Do you place your hopes in action like this?

No. From our point of view, this class justice is and has always been on the wrong side. It decides according to the interests of the rulers, not in the interests of the left and anti-fascists. The actions of the Judicial Security Service towards anti-fascists are unfortunately not an isolated case.

Do you fear that AfD and neo-Nazis on the street see themselves confirmed by the behavior of the court could?

From our point of view, the proceedings at the court are further proof of how much fascists are already part of the bourgeois institutions. In the districts of Esslingen, Sigmaringen and the Rems-Murr district, law enforcement officers recently confiscated such an amount of weapons that trucks were needed to transport them. The suspects are at large again. That actually says everything about how the state deals with anti-fascists and how with fascists.


Opponent of war defends anti-militarist occupation of the Altmark combat training center (daily newspaper Junge Welt)

Press release of the »Abolish Nonviolent Action GÜZ« from October 20th: War opponent defends anti-militarist occupation in court

On Tuesday, an opponent of the war was sentenced by the Bonn District Court to a fine of 100 euros. As part of the non-violent campaign to abolish the GÜZ, she entered the combat training center (GÜZ) Altmark last summer to disrupt the practice. In front of the court, supporters protested against the war exercises of the Bundeswehr and the imposition of fines on activists as part of a vigil with corona distance.

Julia Weise, 23 year old student of cultural studies, argued in court:
»We entered the Altmark Combat Training Center of the Bundeswehr with 25 people. In doing so, we did not cross pacification. Still, I knew what I was doing at that moment: I was entering a military security area. And for several reasons. 1. This is the place where war is practiced. According to the Bundeswehr, all soldiers who are deployed abroad are in training here beforehand. War causes suffering. 2. Wars in violation of international law are being prepared. 3. This place is rented out. Profit is made here with war. 4. The Colbitz-Letzlinger Heide is located in a nature reserve. The fired ammunition runs the risk of polluting the groundwater. «(…)

Julia Weise demanded in court: “If there is going to be a conviction, then I would like to work off the fine in a social organization. Then at least fractions of the money will not flow into the military budget ”. In the judgment, the fine was reduced from 200 euros to 100 euros. (…)

For the occupation of the Altmark military training area in August 2019, 25 activists have received fines of between 200 and 500 euros in the past few months.

The Verdi regional district of Berlin-Brandenburg announced on Tuesday about the warning strike by 4,000 workers in Berlin:

On October 20, over 4,000 employees of the BSR, Vivantes and Charité, the pension insurance and numerous other federal institutions were on a warning strike in Berlin.
For example, the garbage disposal and parts of the city cleaning department were on strike. The BSR recycling yards will remain closed all day. Several hundred strikers took part in decentralized rallies at Fehrbelliner Platz (pension insurance schemes, job centers, employment agencies), Alex (Charité and Vivantes) and a silent vigil in front of the Federal Ministry of Finance (employees of federal institutions). (…)

»The offer from the employers’ side that has been available since Friday has very disappointed many of our colleagues. I see that the bargaining parties are still very far apart in this collective bargaining round. One thing is clear: if there is no agreement in the negotiations, which will resume on Thursday in Potsdam, the Berlin workers will still be ready to strike! «Said Frank Wolf, Verdi district manager Berlin-Brandenburg. (…)

In the current collective bargaining round, Verdi is calling for salary increases of 4.8 percent, but at least 150 euros a month. In addition, the increase in the apprenticeship remuneration by 100 euros as well as regulations for taking on apprentices and adapting vacation leave to the level of the employees are required. The negotiations will continue on October 22nd and 23rd in Potsdam. (…)


New allegations against Israel’s prime minister: submarines could sink Bibi

Israel has bought German submarines from Thyssenkrupp. The deal went to court – now Prime Minister Netanyahu could also be investigated.

In the submarine for a demonstration against Prime Minister Netanyahu, Tel Aviv on October 14th Photo: Oded Balilty / ap

JERUSALEM taz | “We are putting pressure on an investigation into the submarine affair,” says Yossi Zamir and points to his T-shirt: “Investigation now!” by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. It is surrounded by hundreds of cars, many of which have a self-made submarine dummy on the roof. The convoy set off in northern Israel on Wednesday morning; in the evening he was to arrive at the Supreme Court in Jerusalem.

This must decide whether to initiate an investigation against Netanyahu in the so-called submarine affair. The case first came to light in 2016 through a report by investigative journalist Raviv Drucker. It is about the purchase of three nuclear weapons-capable submarines for 1.5 billion euros and rocket ships for 430 million euros from the German weapons manufacturer Thyssenkrupp. To make the business possible, bribes should have flowed.

Several people close to Netanyahu have already been charged with bribery, fraud and money laundering, including Netanyahu’s lawyer and cousin David Shimron and ex-Thyssenkrupp representative in Israel, Miki Ganor. Netanyahu himself, who is also on trial in three corruption cases, has not yet been investigated in this case. The court could change this now.

The car convoy was organized by Roi Peleg. The former officer has little to do with the image of an anarchist that Netanyahu paints of the demonstrators who have been demanding his resignation for months. “The submarine affair,” says Peleg, “is arguably the largest arms corruption scandal in the history of Israel.” Like so many, Peleg suspects that Netanyahu himself is involved.

Military staff considered the submarines superfluous

They see indications, for example, in the fact that the submarines were bought even though the Ministry of Defense, military staff and the Navy agreed that Israel did not need any further submarines for defense. In addition, the purchase price was extremely high. According to media reports, however, Netanyahu pushed for the deal and replaced the then defense minister, who was against the purchase, with Avigdor Lieberman. In 2016, the government approved the purchase.

Ganor, the representative of Thyssenkrupp who is said to have initiated the deal, is also said to have brought his legal advisor Shimron with him to the negotiations, who is said to have received a high commission. The explosive thing about it is the family relationship between Shimron and Netanyahu and that Shimron was also Netanyahu’s lawyer.

Investigations could also get Netanyahu into trouble over another cousin, Nathan Milikowsky. Netanyahu held shares in his company Sea Drift (later GrafTech). Explosively, the company had supplied Thyssenkrupp with steel, which may have been a serious conflict of interest for Netanyahu.

Netanyahu could have made the equivalent of several million euros with the deal and put it in his own pocket, according to Blue-White boss Benny Gantz. In the past election campaigns, this suspicion was central to Gantz’s former opposition alliance. Now, however, Blue-White is in a coalition with Netanyahu, and the Knesset voted against the establishment of a committee of inquiry in August. Blau-Weiß abstained from voting.

By Thursday, the attorney general, the prime minister’s office, the defense ministry and the police have to tell the Supreme Court whether they approve of an investigation. Then the court will decide whether to initiate an investigation. Time is of the essence: In November it will be ten years since Netanyahu sold his GrafTech shares – after that no further investigation can be initiated in this case.


Intervene instead of looking the other way (daily newspaper Junge Welt)

The mobile Opferberatung Together e. V. from Halle (Saale) announced on Thursday about an attack by a right-wing man in a tram:

On Friday at nine o’clock in the Halle district court, the trial of a right-wing politically motivated attack will open almost exactly a year ago. Only one week after the right-wing terrorist attack in Halle, three young women intervened when a 39-year-old man racially insulted three men on the street car because of the color of their skin and showed the Hitler salute on the evening of October 17. Two of the women themselves were offended and z. T. been seriously injured.

It is only thanks to the commitment of the injured women and their lawyers that the attack is even heard in court. The Halle public prosecutor’s office closed the investigation against the accused in February 2020 (…). Such an adjustment is possible, among other things, if the punishment to be expected is not significant alongside another one – here following an attempted manslaughter charge from December 2019. However, a guideline on the prosecution of politically motivated criminals by the Saxony-Anhalt Ministry of Justice states that “the effects of the offense on the victim and the public interest in prosecution (…) must be given special attention”. »From many years of experience we know how central the intervention of witnesses is for those affected by right-wing, racist and anti-Semitic attacks: not only in the situation itself, but also for processing what they have experienced. It is all the more important that courageous helpers who are affected by their intervention also find out from the judiciary that such acts are consistently pursued, ”said a spokeswoman for the mobile victim counseling service. After a complaint by the joint prosecutor’s representatives, the public prosecutor finally brought charges in May 2020 against the accused, who was known to the police and had multiple criminal records, of sedition, assault, insult and the use of symbols of unconstitutional organizations. (…)

Hubertus Zdebel, until 2016 member of the Bundestag commission »Storage of highly radioactive waste« and member of the Bundestag for Die Linke, criticized the cancellation of the face-to-face event planned in Kassel for the start of public participation in the search for a repository on Thursday:

The responsible federal authorities risk the failure of the new nuclear waste repository search before it has even started. The Federal Atomic Waste Authority only wants the public to be there from the video tube. Starting the public participation now exclusively as a video session despite all corona restrictions and other deficiencies is wrong. The search for a repository for such waste has not really made any headway for over 50 years. For decades, corporations and federal governments had hindered a sensible and appropriate search for a final repository with an arbitrary political commitment to Gorleben. Now, when the restart is overdue, citizens are supposed to foot the bill again and, under unacceptable conditions, simply listen to what the authorities announce via video and ask questions as a mere staging.