Further to the post below on the protest against the pro-Iranian regime ‘Al-quds Day’ march in Berlin, a Harry’s Place reader from Berlin sends some more images and some description of the main speakers at the counter-demo.
I know this an unusally large amount of pictures for this blog but as well as the high interest in this event, I think there is obviously some food for thought in this for the British left.
Michael Sommer is the head of the german national trade-union DGB, who showed up and made a spontaneous speech. He labelled Ahmadinejads ‘wipe out’ speech as a “call for genocide”, that “should not be played down”.
Cem Oezdemir is a prominent Turkish-German politician from the Green Party who also made a strong statement against Islamism and hatred of Israel – “Israel will still exist when Iran is a democratic state, Egypt has finally democratic elections and even when Syria is democraticised”.
Arash Sarhaddi is an actor and director from Iran who called for the complete isolation of the theocratic regime also saying that “It is no wonder that among Israel’s enemy states there is not a single democracy”.
Mark Aizikovich is an Actor and Co-Owner of a small Jewish theatre in Berlin, who sang “Shalom Aleichem!” together with our whole demonstration while the Islamist al-quds-rally was passing by.
Seyran Ates is a prominent German-Turkish feminist lawyer and author. She specialises in taking the cases of women that are victims of forced marriages, sexist violence in their families and also victims of patriarchal-Islamic honour-codes. In her speech she took on this issue as well as Islamist anti-semitism and made some very critical remarks on the wide-spread cultural relativism in German politics (mainstream as well as on the left) and public that euphemise and even apologise for anti-semitism and violence as “culturally specific”.
There were also support from some Berlin members of the new Linkspartei and in all the 400 participants were people representing many different political camps on the democratic left. Jewish activists and anti-fascist militants were also among the protestors.
The Islamists march was not much bigger than the counter-protest and this we can modestly say has surely also to do with the fact, that we have now organised counter-activities for the third successive year.
On the blog Reality Gaps there are photos of the London Islamist rally today.
There was no counter-demonstration.