• Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    A fateful tug-of-war

    On June 2nd Christian Democrat Walter Lübcke was shot dead in front of his home. Stimulated by fascist blogs, one of them that of a prominent adherent of the Alternative for Germany (AfD), the murderer, a dyed-in-the-wool fascist, had been plotting the attack ever since hearing Lübcke’s fierce reply to vicious anti-foreigner catcalls at a public event four years earlier.

  • Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    Snow queen and Bremen hopes

    In late June, some 5000 protestors camped out, as part of the “Stop Air Base Ramstein Campaign,” drawing attention to Germany’s increasing militarization via NATO. They demanded the U.S. Army base at Ramstein—where the top generals direct troop movements in Africa and the Near East, and deploy drones to murder anyone the Pentagon decides is an enemy—be shut down.

  • Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    Women marchers and absentees

    Berlin, alone among Germany’s 16 states, has declared International Women’s Day a paid holiday, compensating for the fact that the city-state has fewer religious holidays than all the others. A third of the city was once part of the (East) German Democratic Republic, which always marked the day; that may also have contributed to the decision. This was its first year.

  • Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    Contrary creatures

    A majority of Germans want peaceful relations with Russia (and in general), despite the media, politicians and big biz groups pulling toward catastrophe.

  • Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    Karl and Rosa: 100th anniversary

    The masses of red flowers for Karl Liebknecht and, even more for Rosa Luxemburg, was higher than I have ever seen them. Both were murdered one hundred years ago. Why do those two names mean so much to so many people?

  • Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    Sighs of relief

    Germany’s feverish political scene cooled off just a little. Two big sighs of relief permitted some people, at least temporarily, to stop chewing their fingernails.

  • Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    A political seesaw

    It would be a mistake to see Germany’s Greens as radical, well to the left. While the Greens stress environment above all, they have decided that this does not require conflict with big business, which must simply be convinced that ecology and profits can be combined.

  • Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    A big rally and a Bavarian vote

    Last weekend was surely the most complex in ages! Were the results favorable for “the good side”?

  • Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    Cassandra calls

    Eye-catching in Chemnitz were not just Hitler salutes under the statue of Karl Marx but the friendly cooperation between leaders of nasty PEGIDA anti-Islam movement, local pro-fascist thugs and a representative of the racist Alternative for Germany party (AfD).

  • Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    Hate and hope

    The sight of thick-skulled, Nazi-tattooed thugs growling threats as they stormed through the city center, chasing and beating up presumed “foreigners,” unfriendly journalists or any other foes; invoked memories of Charlottesville a year ago—or Germany in the 1930’s.

  • Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    Nazis on the march

    Ten eventful days in Germany set alarm signals clanging louder and louder—worst of all in the East German state of Saxony—but in Berlin as well!

  • Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    Stand up with new hope?

    If you regretted (or rejoiced) that the left-wing German scene, rarely mentioned by US media, was an unimportant sideshow, be prepared for a surprising new hope, called Aufstehen: Stand Up—or for its opposite, more fear.

  • Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    A nasty witch and apes—not from Oz

    Even little victories are rare in the East German industrial landscape. But it is always worthwhile to oppose evil witches and even defy autocrats wearing golden caps full of diamonds and rubies.

  • Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    Fire and riddles at Hamburg

    I wonder whether those so horrified today were sickened then at US attacks on others’ sovereignty. There has been lots of masquerading, I think, by disguised provocateurs or indignant sovereignty defenders. Their threats against even hesitant moves toward dialogue, disarmament, de-escalation in the world’s charged atmosphere are what truly sicken me—and frighten me!

  • Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    Big shots in Hamburg

    Years ago the 35th US president made a speech in Germany, four words of which, in American-accented German, remain famous: “Ich bin ein Berliner!”—“I am a Berliner!” That was John F. Kennedy. Will the 45th president, soon to visit Germany’s second city, emulate him and tweet “I am a Hamburger! Wow!”

  • Berlin Bulletin by Victor Grossman

    Curiouser and Curiouser

    A story worthy of a mystery author—or dramatist—has been hitting German headlines. It began when police at the Vienna airport in Austria arrested a first lieutenant of the German Bundeswehr army when he picked up a pistol hidden some weeks earlier in a bathroom. He denied it was his and was released. But his fingerprints somehow matched those of a refugee who had applied for German asylum two years earlier

  • Martin Schultz

    Miracles Can Happen

    To follow German politics these days you have to like arithmetic. At first only up to six, for that many parties are now vying to get good grades, lots of votes, and more power in the September elections to the Bundestag, which will lead to a government ruling until 2021.

  • Angela Merkel & the CDU

    Bears and Musical Chairs

    Those who, like me, grew up with the writings of A. A. Milne may recall not just Winnie the Pooh but two other little bears and how “one of them was Bad and the other was Good” and kept getting better.  In a way, that recalls German politics. The goodie in next September’s elections, it […]

  • Spanish Recollections: the 80th Anniversary of the International Brigades

    In one hurrying day, eighty years ago, in Albacete, a center of Spain’s La Mancha region, a few officers somehow created quarters for five hundred men arriving the following day, then five hundred more, and more.  Soon three or four thousand, somehow organized in units despite a mad variety of languages, were issued a motley […]

  • Berlin: An Omen for the 2017 German Federal Elections?

    There is currently too much dramatic news abroad in the world, mostly bad.  What can an election in one single city mean, far from most fronts?  Yet the voting in Berlin last Sunday (September 18th) was full of drama and meaning, also outside Germany.  The results caused some to grieve, some to applaud, and analysts […]