The “Pro Chemnitz” demonstration
The civic movement “Pro Chemnitz” called for a registered demonstration against migrant crime on Monday, 27 August, at 6 p.m.
The party “Die Linke” (“The Left Party”) and other leftist groups called for the same time for a counter demonstration against the “Pro Chemnitz” group whom one of the leftist organizations called “Nazis”.
While the participants of the two rallies were gathering, disturbances and attacks against the other side started. The Police report about these events doesn’t detail from which side the attacks started but it is quite clear that the leftist demonstrators aggressively tried to disturb the “Pro Chemnitz” rally, for example by blocking the rally’s route.
Some far-right people also joined the “Pro Chemnitz” demonstration and the Police reported that some of them showed the Nazi salute, forbidden in Germany. Some people later suspected that some of these “Nazis” might have actually been leftist provocateurs. In any case, one of the people whose picture showing the Nazi salute appeared in many media reports as a proof of the far-right leanings of the demonstrators, had a R.A.F. tattoo on the right hand.
“R.A.F.” are the initials for “Rote Armee Fraktion” (“Red Army Fraction”), the leftist terrorist organization which committed bank robberies and murders in Germany during the 1970’s. Leftists then alleged that the photo with the tattoo was a fake, but it apparently was not, and at least one German online magazine—T-online—had to apologize for calling it a fake.
The “Pro Chemnitz” march started at around 8 p.m.
The leftist counter-demonstration started at around the same time. While on the march, the “Pro Chemnitz” rally was apparently attacked with bottles and “pyrotechnics” thrown at them from a house alongside the march’s route. Also, as mentioned earlier, leftists tried to block the route of the rally and had to be removed by the Police.
Both demonstrations ended at around 9 p.m. According to the Police report some rally participants were attacked while they were on their way to leave the demonstration. The Police report is vague about who the attackers and the attacked were. But it is pretty clear from the context: masked Antifa, armed with sticks, were the attackers and participants of the “Pro Chemnitz” rally were the victims of the attacks.
Reactions from politicians and the media
The Police report states that about 6000 people participated in the “Pro Chemnitz” rally and about 1500 in the leftist counter demonstration. The report mentions that 43 charges were made. It lists, as presumably the most important ones, 11 bodily harm charges, 10 charges for “using symbols of forbidden organizations” (probably Nazi salutes), 3 violations of the Saxony demonstration act and 2 breach of the peace charges.
The 10 Nazi-salute charges would have been made against rogue participants of the “Pro Chemnitz” rally. That leaves 33 charges. Knowing the aggressiveness of leftist demonstrators, one would assume that most of the other charges would have been made against them. But even if one assumes a 50-50 distribution of the remaining 33 charges, the Police would have charged 16 or 17 additional “Pro Chemnitz” rally participants with some offense.
That gives 27 charges in a rally of 6000 people—0.45% of all participants. As one can see in the pictures of the “Pro Chemnitz” rally, by far the majority of the demonstrators was listening to the speakers and marching in complete peace and in an orderly manner. But you would not know this by reading reports about the rally in the German media. For example, this is from the headline of a report by the Spiegel, one of the most influential German political magazines, about the event:
Man hunts, again: several people were injured in Chemnitz in volent clashes. The police had underestimated the right-wing deployment – and had to allow the mob to do whatever they liked.
Reporting about Chemnitz in this style dominated the German media during the following days. The event leading to these demonstrators—the killing of Daniel Hillig—or the serious security problems which Chemnitz had been suffering from since Chancellor Merkel opened the borders completely faded into the background. The problems that almost the whole German media was focusing on was: the “man hunts” by the “right-wing mob” which “ganged up” against foreigners and which showed Nazi salutes.
Politicians soon joined into this chorus of condemnations. Merkel’s press speaker said this on Monday, 27 August (about the spontaneous rallies which took place the previous day):
Such ganging up, man hunts of people with different looks, different ethnic origin, or trying to spread hatred on the streets—we don’t accept that.
And Chancellor Merkel herself said this:
We have video footage that there were man hunts, that there was ganging up, there was hatred on the street. That has nothing to do with our constitutional state.
The article in Die Welt newspaper which reported on the statement of the Government press speaker was commented by 1683 people. I read many of the comments and not a single one was supportive of the Government’s statement. This comment was typical of many others:
But, as far as I know, the Federal Government does not condemn the almost daily stabbings, rapes and fights by its new charges [i.e. the asylum seekers]. That speaks for itself.
The reporting in the media became more and more hysterical. The foreign press joined in, too, taking over uncritically what the German media reported. For example, this is the headline from the Telegraph in the UK, reporting about the demonstrations which took place on Monday, 27 August:
Right-wing mobs creating ‘civil war’ in Germany after second night of violence in Chemnitz
To be continued …