When a small off-cinema in St. Pauli recently tried to show Claude Lanzmann’s 1973 documentary “Why Israel”, the public found themselves in front of barricaded doors, guarded by fake troops decorated with Israeli flags on toilet paper. After the cinema had called off the screening in order to avoid a physical conflict, visitors declaring themselves unsatisfied with the artistic standard of the “street theatre” performance where hit in the face by activists well-prepared for violence, shouting “Schwuchteln!” (faggots) and “Judenschweine!”. The disturbing (though not at all surprising) thing about this is that the attackers are not Neo-Nazis (at least not in the usual meaning of the word) but leftist “anti-imperialists” from the “Internationales Zentrum B5” next door – who themselves also shouted “Nazis raus!” at the cinema guests.
This happened already on October 25. The press largely failed to recognise the event as something worth mentioning until about three weeks later when Spiegel Online became aware of a notice in Le Monde. A more extensive English language coverage later appeared in the Jerusalem Post.
An alliance initiated by the Hamburger Studienbibliothek and others to fight anti-semitism in the Left and to support the re-screening of the film on December 13, now calls for a demonstration in Hamburg on that day. While reactions of the left majority range from half-hearted stand-offs over complete silence to open vindication of the attack, the list of people and groups supporting the proclamation on b-g-h-u.blogspot.com is growing daily. We would be happy if Engage supporters would sign the proclamation. An English tranlsation is Here. To sign please email your name and details through the Engage contact facility.