In Germany, anti-Semitic riots, too
I'm here in Germany and watching the events in Israel unfold with immense interest, given Germany's anti-Semitic past.
And there are still anti-Semites. Instead of, say, celebrating Oktoberfest this past month or the month earlier, for them, October is their occasion to conduct anti-Semitic protests, targeting Israel. They have come out into the streets.
Here is a rough lay of the land, describing the uneven response from the authorities:
While two anti-Israel demonstrations were banned in Berlin, Israel haters marched in Frankfurt and Cologne this past October.
After two announced anti-Israel demonstrations were banned, things remained quiet in Berlin for much of the month.
The police were present at Neuköllnern Hermannplatz on a recent Saturday with numerous emergency services in place to ensure that the ban was followed.
In a previous Saturday, anti-Semitic slogans and threats of annihilation against Israel were chanted at a pro-Palestinian demonstration in Kreuzberg and Neukölln. The police did not intervene until later, after several reports initiated investigations on suspicion of sedition.
However, there were demonstrations in other places in Germany.
On Saturday, around 700 enemies of Israel marched in Frankfurt am Main, and the police reported "no particular incidents" after the event was concluded.
According to the Frankfurt public order office (yes, we have those in Germany), there was no legal basis for a ban on the demonstration as had been done in Berlin.
However, there were strict conditions: no flags could be burned, hate speeches to be made, or Israel’s right to exist to be disputed.
An anti-Israel demonstration also took place in Cologne on another Saturday – and it did not go smoothly, but was broken up by the police shortly before the planned end. Meeting participants repeatedly called for violence against Israelis, and a case was initiated against a man because he is said to have called for violence against the State of Israel.
And the organizer himself also has to expect criminal proceedings because he is said to have violated several legal requirements to hold the demonstration at all.
The end of the demonstration by the security forces was made easier because, unlike in Berlin or Frankfurt, several hundred enemies of Israel gave free rein to their hatred, but in Cologne only a modest 20 to 30 people took part in the demonstration. Incidentally, the Samidoun group, which is close to the terrorist organization PFLP (the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, based in Gaza) and which also supported the anti-Semitic march in Berlin last week, called for the event.
More than half a century after the Great War ended, the anti-Semites in this country are still around.
Image: Twitter screen shot