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By John Helmer, Moscow

A Berlin court judge has dismissed a charge of threatening public order by a speech by Heinrich Buecker (lead image, left) last year for which he has been prosecuted for “publicly approving a crime of aggression”. Buecker  is a well-known Berlin anti-war activist and critic of the German government’s war against Russia in the Ukraine.  His speech was given in a Berlin park last June 22 on the 81st  anniversary of the German invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941.

In a 90-minute courtroom session on April 27, guarded by five armed police, Judge Marieluis Brinkmann  (right) of the Tiergarten District Court of Berlin (at rear of lead image) interrupted and stopped Buecker testifying in what the judge dismissed as “a history lesson”; refused to accept from his defence lawyer mainstream German media publications  and Bundestag reports as evidence that Buecker’s opinions had been circulating widely in public before he spoke at the Berlin rally;  and would not allow legal argument on Article 5, the free speech provision of the German constitution known as the Basic Law.

Instead, Judge Brinkmann  ruled that an earlier conviction and fine for Buecker in the Tiergarten District Court in January should be dismissed because his speech had been a private one in front of Buecker’s “fans”, not a public speech at all.  

This is a new interpretation of law for which there is no German constitutional precedent. Article 5 draws no distinction between private and public speech; or the size of the audiences which are covered by the constitution; “every person,” the text says, “shall have the right freely to express and disseminate his opinions in speech, writing and pictures, and to inform himself without hindrance from generally accessible sources.”

The Berlin judge also broke German court precedent and judicial practice by announcing in her ruling a finding of fact and law about which she had refused to allow any evidence or argument to be presented and tested in court.  In the Ukraine, she announced, Russia is waging a “war of aggression in violation of international law.”

In her ruling the judge signalled that the German authorities want to prevent the Buecker case from becoming a rallying cause for free speech advocates across the country. “They want the issue to go away as quickly as possible,” Buecker said. “They realize it’s becoming too public.”

Last January, in the first stage of the Berlin government’s prosecution of anti-war  critics like Buecker, Judge Tobias Pollman issued a summary judgement in the Tiergarten court without hearing evidence or argument. He ruled that Buecker’s  crime came under Section 140 of the Criminal Code  and had consisted of “publicly approving a crime of aggression (Section 138 of the International Criminal Code)   in a manner likely to disturb the public peace at a meeting.” Pollman charged Buecker with  approving in his speech “Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in violation of international law, the illegality of which you knew.”   

Left, Buecker reading his speech on June 22, 2022, at the Soviet Memorial in Berlin’s Treptow Park on the 81st anniversary of Nazi Germany’s invasion of the Soviet Union; read this report of the case here.     

Click to read, and listen to Buecker’s interview on TNT Radio’s War of the Worlds on April 15.     The German bureau of Ruptly, a subsidiary of the Russian RT group, has broadcast this interview in German with Buecker at the court house.  

Judge Brinkman has repeated Pollman’s conclusion but lifted the conviction and the €2,000 fine imposed. It is unclear what was the source of Brinkmann’s finding that the only people who had heard his speech last year were his “fan base”, or how many of them were present. At the hearing last week, there were more than 70 people attending, a much larger number than court officials had anticipated, and so they changed courtooms to accommodate the overflow. There were others waiting in the street outside. Five uniformed, armed police for security inside the courtroom was an unusual public demonstration of state force.

No reporter from the national German media attended, nor any representative of the Berlin papers. Click to read this report.  

Unsere Zeit (“Our Time”)m, a weekly publication of the German communist Party (DKP). Source: https://www.unsere-zeit.de

State prosecutor Esther Wegmann  read out the indictment and the state’s case against Buecker from a typescript. This was accepted by the judge;  she did not allow Buecker to read from his prepared speech in defence and ordered both Buecker and his lawyer to speak ad lib.  In a comment, she told Buecker his remarks were no more than “backing the view of Russia”.

The prosecutor also attempted to conceal her identity. She was only person in the courtroom who wore a Covid-19 mask; when the judge asked to remove it, she refused. “She didn’t want to be photographed,” a courtroom source said.

Read  Buecker’s court statement in full here.    Less than 10% was allowed to be heard in court. For an English translation of excerpts, read on:

Thank you for reading this speech, its content and statements

I hereby fully confess.

The accusations made against me by the court here I point out with a resolute reponse. On June 22, 2022, I attended the Soviet Memorial in the Treptowr Park when the speech just documented here was delivered. Under the title of my speech, “We do not forget!“, I have had to say that we must keep awake this “painful and shameful memory of the so-called the monstrous and cruel war of extermination, which the fascist Germany waged against the entire Soviet Union – especially the Ukrainian, the the Belarusian and Russian Republics.

During the Second World War in the Soviet Union, the German government either completely or partially destroyed: 15 major cities, 1,710 cities, 70,000 villages, almost 60 million buildings, 32,000 industrial enterprises, 10,000 power plants, 60,000 km of railway tracks, 100,000 km of motorways, 40,000 hospitals and medical centers, 64,000 schools and colleges, 43,000 libraries, 44,000 theatres, about 3,000 churches and 400 museums.

These figures are from the book “Fathers of Annihilation” by Professor Brian Easlea of London.   

Germany is responsible for the deaths of about 27 million citizens of the Soviet Union who died during World War II, or they were deliberately killed, the majority of them civilians. Including millions of Jews, Poles, Sinti and Roma, Ukrainians, Russians and Communists who regarded Hitler-Germany as subhuman who have been destroyed.

That’s why I want to take this opportunity again with the deepest conviction to repeat what I declared on June 22, 2022: “Never again may we as Germans get involved in a war against Russia in any form. We we need to unite and join to oppose this madness together

As the operator of the Coop anti-war café in Berlin, that I started in 2005, of course, my stance against the war is self-explanatory. And against all wars. But every war must also be fought in trying to understand and analyse the political-historical context. The German government supports Ukraine and thus at the same time many ultranationalist,  fascist elements, the military, police, and secret services which significantly control or influence Ukrainian administrative and political  bodies.

Source: https://www.reuters.com/

Meanwhile, these forces are using heavy weapons in Ukraine and Ukrainian soldiers are being trained in Germany. You are actually working directly with these forces – that is, with the descendants of those forces whom the Nazis had already been using since the beginning of the Operation Barbarossa; this combination has  worked together since June 22, 1941, with Nazi collaborators.

The West, i.e. Germany, the USA, Great Britain, yes,  almost all NATO countries support a corrupt regime in Ukraine with Nazi ties,  which was orchestrated from the outside in 2014 by a western financed  coup was brought to power. The illegitimate and illegal coup in Kiev in February 2014 had been prepared for years. Politicians such as the now deceased US senator [John] McCain, the US politician; [Under Secretary of State] Victoria Nuland; and  German politicians of the party  of the Greens, the FSP, and the CDU fired up protesters in Kiev in 2013 and 2014 at the Maidan in an increasingly charged protest against their President. This is known to have escalated into violent clashes with many dead, and which, to this day very significantly, have never have been investigated according to the rule of law in the state. How would the story have been lost without the intrusive interference of representatives of other states in Ukraine?

The reintegration of Crimea was a concerted action of the residents of Crimea and Russia. The inhabitants of Crimea as Russian-speaking and also ethnic Russians did not want to be part of an anti-Russian country  — you should be aware of that.

The Crimeans were a persecuted minority already under the Yushchenko government in 2004 and already in the 90s when they gained very negative experience. The Russian government, for its part, had immediately understood that from the coup in Kiev  the Crimea and the Russian naval bases on the peninsula would probably be the next targets of the Russophobes and their forces in Kiev. In March, the population decided in a referendum with over 90% of the votes to re-join the Russian Federation and that is after Russian soldiers without insignia occupied at first the Ukrainian military bases in the Crimea. In response, Berlin and other western governments accused Russia, including the leading western media. They said that allegedly the  annexation of Crimea was in violation of international law. The previous coup in Kiev was praised as a so-called “revolution” and dismissed the danger [to Russia] that the Russian Navy, which  has leased its naval base for many years at Sevastopol in the Crimea would have been  lost and thus at the same time that access across the Black Sea to the Mediterranean Sea.

The consideration that the so-called annexation of Crimea is also a kind of logical consequence of the anti-Russian coup in Kiev was, in my opinion, requires courage in speaking out. In this country Russia is portrayed as aggressive, as an aggressor. But in my opinion, Russia was looking for,  and the Russian government is always looking for the most defensive way to resolve conflict. For example, the desire of the Donbass republics for admission to Russia was refused by the government in Moscow for many years.

On the contrary, that government used all their authority to support the secessionists with the Minsk Agreements on bringing about a peaceful settlement with Ukraine.  Meanwhile, the Russian side regrets its reluctance, as we now know, was only used by Germany and France to give Ukraine time to “get stronger,” as Mrs Merkel put it. In fact, it’s exactly the other way around. With the endless repeated narrative that Russia wants more territory in Europe  distracting  from facing up to what  it means that NATO has been  moving further and further to the east. In the meantime, the war against Russia is practiced in regular and increasingly large-scale maneuvers.

Do you remember that for a long time the rationale for all this was just about defending  against Iran or North Korea, albeit if you are setting up missile silos in Eastern Europe? We are already there,so, thanks to the NATO it no longer has to disguise its intention under alleged Russian “aggression”. Donetsk and Lugansk in the Donbass region have also declared independence,  because the Ukrainians demonizesd them as a Russian-speaking minority and wanted to live free from under  the Russophobic regime of Kiev. When they initially sought autonomy within Ukraine, that  was rejected by the Ukrainian side. What did Kiev do instead? Send the military, and when the ordinary soldiers were not rigorous enough,  the time has come for the oligarchs to finance those -paramilitary volunteer battalions which have earned  their first spurs in the so-called anti-terrorist operation (ATO) in Odessa and other cities in the Ukrainian southeast which have had with strong traditional ties with Russia. Then  there were protests and uprisings organized by the coup government in Kiev from the second half of April 2014 and put down brutally.

On May 2, 2014, riots culminated in the massacre in Trade Union House in Odessa when the victims of this day officially stated to be 48 dead and over 200 injured. But about them one thing has been left out. They were all left-wing opponents of the putsch government supporting the federalization of the regions. They already had set up a  camp in front of the trade union building, and that became a thorn in the side of the higher authorities. So there were repeated clashes with Kiev support groups, including a local offshoot of the Pravy Sektor group. What had been peaceful opposition was lost.

After street battles in the centre with many injured and six dead, and then an armed mob went to the camp in front of the Union House, whereupon about 400 unarmed people fled to the nearby trade union building and barricaded themselves there. The camp was destroyed and set on fire and then those fleeing for refuge were chased with Molotov cocktails. The trade union building was then attacked. Thirty-two people burned to death in the building, plus a number of those who jumped out of the windows because of the heat were then brutally beaten to death or seriously injured by the right-wing mob downstairs in front of the building. This resulted in another 10 deaths.

Left, May 2, 2014 – Odessa Trade Union House. Right, May 2, 1933 – German trade union headquarters buildings throughout Germany were taken over by gangs operating with police protection.

For me, May 2 is also the day on which, in 1933, the trade union houses in Germany were stormed by the Nazis, and  left-wingers and trade unionists were sent to the first provisional concentration camps and beaten up there, tortured or even murdered.

As an anti-fascist and anti-imperialist, I expressly oppose the policy of regime change, against wars of intervention and against any Interference in the internal affairs of independent states. I call on the German government to adopt a policy in the interest of International peace, in the interests of international security and peaceful coexistence of all peoples. The principles of the Charter of the United Nations must be respected and international law must be defended.

I call for all arms deliveries and training programs for the Ukraine stop  immediately. I demand diplomacy instead of weapons. I call for all efforts of our government to negotiate and allow opponents of war without preconditions. The sacrifice of the Ukraine for the geopolitical interests of the West, namely the the strategic weakening of Russia,  is a monstrous war crime and must have an end. The role of the media in promoting the current destructive Ukrainian  politics is immense. The leading German media in support of  the views expressed by the government are expressed almost unreservedly. But about the actual events there is hardly a report in the bourgeois media,  or they  are reported only in passing. Before the start of the war on February 24, 2022, on the other hand, there were constant reports in the German bourgeois media debunking the ultranationalist elements operating in Ukraine for taking action against their own people. There were threats against ill-wishers, journalists, politicians and lawyers – or their imprisonment and killing. .

But now what is happening in the West and especially in Berlin, in London, in Canada,   and in the US, is that the extreme Russophobic ultranationalists in Ukraine are working closely together with the ruling circles.  This collaboration is not new in itself, but its intensity has accelerated.  Such collaboration already existed in the covert war of the US intelligence services against the Soviet Union after the Second World War,  and then from the 1990s to influence the state-building of Ukraine after its separation from the USSR and to change its relations with Russia. Canada,  and theold Federal Republic of Germany. This was to adopt a policy of state complicity in order to protect Ukrainian war criminals – that collaborators had generally protected them from prosecution before the Nuremberg Tribunal…

The Wehrmacht wanted to exterminate almost a million people in Leningrad by starvation. Now the Bundeswehr is back on the Russian border, and Ukrainian military personnel are being trained in Germany. I find all this unbelievable….Together we all express that it is incredible what is happening in Germany is that the right to free expression should be restricted, as is happening.  This trial today is therefore of great public importance. This is because if I were to be found guilty in this court, this would be represent an extraordinary violation of Article 5 (1) of the Basic Law. There, what is stated is that everyone has the right to express his or her opinion in writing and to  express and disseminate this freely.

Source: https://www.deutschland.de/

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