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(en) ait russia: "Anti-quarantine" protests in Germany and Britain: who and why [machine translation]

Date Fri, 22 May 2020 08:49:25 +0300

The restrictions on freedoms and the strengthening of totalitarian control carried out by almost all governments around the world under the pretext of "fighting the epidemic" cause widespread discontent and protests in many countries, including Germany and Britain. Unfortunately, many proponents of social transformation are essentially paralyzed by what is happening, like rabbits mesmerized by a boa constrictor and protest to the far right. ---- PROTEST IN STUTTGART ---- On May 16, another wave of protests against the restriction of civil liberties under the pretext of quarantine took place in the cities of Germany. The largest of them took place in Stuttgart. We reprint for informational purposes an article from a local publication:

"They don't want to miss out on any mouth protection or a muzzle. Thousands of thinkers from the Think Across Initiative came to Cannstatter-Wazen again. A day full of incidents and surprises.

In the woman's hands is a large red heart-shaped shield. "For peace, freedom and a beautiful future" - it is written on it. And who does not agree with this? The 68-year-old woman came from Goeppingen, and not for the first time. More than 5,000 permitted demonstrators gathered on Saturday at Cannstatter-Wazen and next to it for a demonstration against measures in connection with the coronavirus: against forced wearing of masks, against restrictions on fundamental rights, against all this "unthinkable idiocy", as the enthusiastically received video message says. However, the circumstances of this demonstration show: the tone is getting sharper, and the dividing gulfs are getting bigger.

A woman with a picture of a heart finds the future not at all beautiful. She is afraid of the state of universal supervision and is convinced that "we can no longer breathe freely," she says. The powers that be above are "no, I no longer believe a single word of them." She is surrounded by the same slogans on cardboard sheets: "Factory of Fear Federal Government", "Muzzle duty - stop immediately!" or "For democracy, without coercion!". Speakers speak of abuse of power, corrupt science, coercion, deceitful media coverage.

"We are a peaceful movement," says Michael Ballweg, organizer of the demonstration and founder of the Think Across Initiative. But this does not mean that he refuses legal conflict. Next week, he announces, there will be an appeal to the Federal Court. He does not accept that the city authorities limited the number of participants to the event to 5,000, citing protection from infection. The Stuttgart Administrative Court failed to convince him on Friday. And the administrative court of appeal, too - on Saturday rejected his complaint.

To circumvent the ban, Ballweg announced the backup plan the day before. Everyone who, due to restrictions, will not be able to get to the venue of the event, must form groups of 9 people on the spot and declare: "I declare the holding of a spontaneous meeting." In other words, more participants through the back door. The fact that 500 administrators were ordered to close their mouth and nose, Ballweg sees not as a defense against the virus, but as an attempt to "split our peace movement and sabotage our organizational concept."

But city officials set clear limits. After the virological chaos a week ago, when 10 thousand participants began to disperse home in groups, and sometimes even filled paths without masks, this time more was to be done for the virological defense of the non-demonstrating majority.

There were probably omissions. They probably thought that the police would intervene right there. However, she did not have the authority to do so. This was enough for the president of the land police, Stefanie Hinz, to clarify this in the internal circular. Monitoring hygiene in public space is "the task of the local police authorities," she said. That is, the task of the city itself. And "transport companies themselves are encouraged to participate in the obligation to wear a mask."

This Saturday obviously worked. The controllers looked more closely - and more than 60 intruders were immediately detected only on the tram tracks. They were fined 300 euros. The case of spontaneous gatherings was regulated by the head of the law enforcement agency Dorothea Koller, with significant support from the head of the police, Hinz. Hundreds of demonstrators were allotted a meeting place at a distance on Mercedesstrasse. As spectators behind the fence.

But more and more anti-fascist activists walked around the fence. They distributed leaflets that called for "not letting the Nazis and other right-wingers attend this meeting." Probably more severe blows followed from this environment. On the way to a demonstration near the stadium on Mercedes-Benz, three participants were attacked by a group of unknowns and were seriously injured. Obviously, they were specially selected.

The escalation level rose the day before: on Saturday night on Augsburgstrasse in Untertürkheim three trucks that transported technical equipment for demonstration on Wazen caught fire. The perpetrators of this are unknown, but the left circles suspect. "We have nothing in hot pursuit," said police spokesman Stefan Keilbach. The police created an investigation team of 10 people - first of all, state security officers.

The main surprise organizer Ballweg saved in the end. He announced that he would no longer organize major demonstrations. Why? "Because we created a powerful movement, and everyone should not rely on any major demonstrations, but should finally be active," he says. The movement goes further, in Germany there are already 72 Think Across Initiatives. On Saturday, protests took place in Munich, Hamburg, Frankfurt, Cologne, Dusseldorf, Dortmund and Dresden. Demonstrations will continue in Stuttgart. And next Saturday? "I have no idea," he says. He has not yet discussed this with his team.

This has nothing to do with the planned complaint to the Constitutional Court, he says. She is preparing, and "it would be wrong to say that they will not prepare her." It is about requirements, and this also applies to other demonstrations. But Ballveg himself, obviously, was already tired of his role: "Now everyone must defend their basic rights under their own responsibility and cannot rely on the fact that there will always be someone else who will rise" "(https://www.stuttgarter-zeitung.de/inhalt.corona-protest-in-stuttgart-streit-um-corona-folgen-wird-heftiger.fd43f309-f9be-4355-a191-041c0e145cbc.html)

The Dilemma of the Left

But what about the German left radicals? Instead of criticizing the authorities for totalitarian violation of freedoms and organizing their own protest movement, they prefer to reject the protest itself as purely far-right and insane, often justifying restrictive measures, taking on faith the myths of the "deadly plague of the 21st century" and thereby taking deliberately losing position. About this - a comment from the left German newspaper Noyes Deutschland:

"For weeks, right-wing conspiracy theorists, esoteric hippies and other" government critics "have committed atrocities in so-called hygienic demonstrations. They are nonsense about the fact that this information billionaire Bill Gates wants to take over the world and that the federal government allegedly plans to take compulsory vaccinations against coronavirus. This nonsense, of course, but talk the whole world about it, and the Tagesschau and other television formats broadcast messages during the most viewed hours, which shows that the right-wingers in Germany have r hegemony of discourse. The extra-parliamentary left is as far from this as the Moon from the Earth.

As a matter of fact, restrictions on civil rights during the crisis with the coronavirus are a left-wing topic. The hygienic demonstrations on Rosa Luxemburg's Berlin Square were initially attended by the left. But they allowed themselves to be squeezed out more and more. Now the left is mobilizing forces for demonstrations against the drift of these alliances to the right - and not only in the capital. The extra-parliamentary left where it too often found itself in the recent past: on the defensive. She leads defensive battles. She has long been unable to win points, putting forward their own topics. It used to be different: for example, during demonstrations against Hartz-IV (a cut in the social insurance system, - aitrus.info) and rallies against the war in Afghanistan. But it was a long time ago.

Christian Clemm

And in the UK?

Protests against the violation of rights and freedoms under the pretext of an epidemic in this country are small and gather the most motley audience. Unfortunately, even here, indignant at the new despotism rush to the other extreme, often denying the existence of an epidemic in general or building various exotic theories. We provide information on the May 16 protest in Hyde Park in London:

" Activists, including the brother of former Labor leader Jeremy Corbin, were arrested after coming to London's Hyde Park in protest against the lockdown due to coronavirus in the UK.

Photos from a park in the center of the capital show that around 40 demonstrators gathered Saturday morning.

A representative of the metropolitan police said that 19 people were arrested in the Hyde Park area, and another 10 people received fines on the spot.

Sitting near the Speaker's Corner in the north-eastern part of the park, the protesters waved banners with the words "It's not about the virus, but about control" and "There is no new abnormality".

Police took Pearce Corbin handcuffed after taking a megaphone and claiming that 5G and the coronavirus pandemic are related. He said 5G was increasing the number of people with coronovirus and called the lockdown "a set of lies to brainwash you and keep you in good order." He was taken after he refused to leave, at the request of a police officer, and refused to provide his details.

50-year-old David Samson, who said he works in finance, said he had come to protest because: "I never thought I'd see civil rights suppression in my lifetime" because of the "fake virus."

Another demonstrator, 62-year-old Katherine Harvey, said she would like to emphasize "the devastation caused by this lockdown." She stated that she was forced to close her store on the Columbia Road Flower Market, adding: "The effects of the lockdown are much, much worse than the virus - mental health, domestic violence, shops closed, theaters, cinemas, restaurants. This is not necessary."

A leaflet promoting the protest called for "no vaccines, no new standards, and no illegal lockdown."

A large number of police also gathered, and each time the arrest of the demonstrator was accompanied by a buzz and repeated cries of "put Bill Gates in jail." (https://www.standard.co.uk/news/london/anti-lockdown-protest-hyde-park-a4442461.html)

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