Merry Christmas Germany from a concerned citizen
For over one year, “refugized” migrants have occupied a public park and a former school in the center of Berlin. The strikers survived two winters. Bloody attacks came from without and within, but not from typical nazis.
Why? Because Germans can join the police îf they want to start pogroms. Not illegal violators, but legal ones threaten us. A nazi can go to jail for murdering someone. A cop or even a politician? No way!
The striking refugees saw the carnival of my pluralist society march past: white saviors and servants, “Kacktivists,” politicians, posh reporters. Christian ministers (the political type) preached against them, nazis Hitler would be ashamed of rallyed against them. The strike survived concerned neighborhood meetings, “donations” from charitable waste disposers, and critical whiteness.
But surviving was not the major achievement of the strike. It mobilized not just German asylum seekers, but people from the farthest corners of Europe: “Lampedusa refugees” from Italy, Roma families from Eastern Europe, Maghrebi sans-papiers, traveling hedonists from God-knows-where…
Knowing that the shift from chauvinism to charity is all we can expect of our fellow Germans, we citizen supporters want to at least inform migrants that they are not crooks or traitors for coming here, that they are entitled to go wherever they please and that it’s no cop’s right to harrass them.
The refugees confidently pushing aside your private guards and armored cops beat cracks into Europe’s fortified labyrinth. The people are angry, dear Germany. It’s not our fault.
We cannot consider your ninja turtles a serious threat. Really, we’re so strong, we’re our own worst enemies. There is much hostility inside our own movement. “Good” activists accuse “bad” ones of only “taking part to have a place to sleep.” But ist that a weakness? The CDU would probably demand much more baksheesh to support our cause. We should be grateful!
We tried many forms of action, experienced few successes and many failures, but no defeat. Every time we thought the nightmare was over, a new one started, so we reflected our European Dream.
Despite money squabbles, holiday activism and capitalist society’s ulcers breaking open, migration is a movement in motion. White German anti-racists and migrants deal with the same issues as in 1992, but a business can survive anything except un-busyness.
There is still no central structure, no leader, no order, no future, so fuck it! New people show up every day. “Anarchists” who tried to build institutions, called for structure, then became fatalists or developed chronic migraine. Others started playing the guitar with varying success or tried new hairstyles. Now I understand the meaning of “Rock and Roll McDonald’s.”
The former force of the German Left has whithered to moralism, self-castigation has replaced propaganda, soli parties have replaced bank robberies. Instead of recognizing our strength, we supporters create coffee-table problems: Is it emancipatory to support a place more violent and sexist than most Ku’Damm discos? Are we sacrificing our grassroots revolution? Turning into social workers by arranging legal support? Staging the humanitarian version of Hagenbeck’s Völkerschau?
Some nice politicians tolerated us and proclaimed solidarity with our demands – but that was it. Most ignored our political message and doubted whether our measures were constructive. The religious social organizations only showed up when the government called them – after police repression had failed. The most persistent support came from neighbors and autonomous activists – people who can’t or don’t vote for the Green Party.
Some sympathetic office-holders waited until it would be “politically correct” to join the hooligans and shout “No Border, No Nation!” and still keep their jobs. This moment will never come. Yet, they did not demand more of us than of themselves: To respect (German) law and order or piss off and bother the responsible bosses in Brussels.
We’re not asking society to reform or revolt, just to adapt. I would like to stop the spiral of social regression, economic monopolization and military aggression, but our immediate goals are more modest.
But even if the “police-icians” promise small improvements: We will not sing hymns when cops beat and pepper-spray us. Even if they just give us their blue-eyed hate stares: Fuck them! We will not kindly ask people to sign declarations of non-violence before they can join or check their IDs. We will not white-wash the bloodstains on our own vests.
We are peaceful, but just because rioting would harm us while our demos still attract more cops than protesters, but not because we value peace over justice.
The Ausländerbehörde will not stop its aggression. So refugees do not choose whether to fight against apartheid in the colonial metropolis – only whether to fight alone or together. Likewise, European citizens do not choose peace, only to ignore the war outside.
But migrants are not Fußvolk for our revolution. When we try to organize migrants in “Caravans” (like Moses) and “long marches” (like Mao), give them a “Voice” (like Bushido), make them “hunger strike,” “occupy” public property, “reclaim the streets,” “fight the power,” defy the “sexist-racist-capitalist” continuum and be nice to old folks and kids, are we asking our hostages to liberate us?
Supporters should let go of plenum frenzy, community fetishism, active activism and fixed ideas of what a movement should look like. The Oranienplatz camp follows the tradition of No Border or Occupy, gatherings by “fed up” university students. Camp protests may seem romantic to former scouts. To people who lived in UNHCR camps, in slums, on the streets, they may not.
Unfortunately, the German president didn’t invite our protest to stay at the Bellevue, God’s housekeepers didn’t open the churches, so we had to set up somewhere. We thought we’d besiege (not beseech) the government, until it fulfills our demands. Yes, siege camps more effectively summon starvation and plague than victory, but beating at the gates of the enemy is better than rotting away in the IMF reservation they call your “fatherland.”
Whether black or brown, red or green, we are all in the rat race. Like our friends the rats, we sometimes work together, other times fight over crumbs, but no human society has ever been able to defeat us, no border has ever stopped us. Our presence is powerful and fearsome, but we don’t even know it.
We achieved the logistic miracle of maintaining such a large group of people with no proper income, without even a proper organizational account to accept donations. We liberated two public spaces and made them forums for political debate in the Roman sense. By fighting us, Berlin’s Senate is revealing itself as a chauvinist Mafia in the Roman sense.
Germany, we bullied your phony government into negotiating with us. We told your friends to take their charity and give it to their own neglected Waldorf kids. We defended the camp against your nazis in uniform several times, we will defend it against their well-groomed masters. We know whom we are dealing with, you don’t. Merry Christmas!