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Seen at Kathedrale Sanctissimae Trinitatis in Dresden, August 2022

Sonntag, 31. Dezember 2023


Kurt Tucholsky, 1931: No one has ever tried to fight the war seriously. All the schools and all the churches, all the cinemas and all the newspapers have never been closed for the propaganda of war. So we don't even know what a generation generation would look like, if it grew up in the air of a healthy and combative but war rejecting pacifism. We don't know.

Freitag, 25. Dezember 2023


War is over, if YOU want it now.

Freitag, 8. Dezember 2023

Refaat Alareer, palästinensischer Dichter und Literaturwissenschaftler

23 September 1979 – 6 December 2023
If I die
Written on 1 November 2023, performed by Brian Cox.
Killed in Gaza by IDF strikes on 6 December 2023.

If I must die,
you must live
to tell my story
to sell my things
to buy a piece of cloth
and some strings,
(make it white with a long tail)
so that a child, somewhere in Gaza
while looking heaven in the eye
awaiting his dad who left in a blaze—
and bid no one farewell
not even to his flesh
not even to himself—
sees the kite, my kite you made,
flying up above
and thinks for a moment an angel is there
bringing back love

If I must die
let it bring hope
let it be a tale.


Montag, 8. Mai 2023

Commemoration of the dead of World War II

The commemoration of the end of the Second World War was worth a whole 30 seconds to the Tagesschau on 8 May 2023. Literally (the entire contribution):
Germany commemorated the end of the Second World War 78 years ago today.Berlin's mayor Wegner, together with the Ukrainian ambassador Makeyev, commemorated the more than 60 million war dead in the new guardhouse. Against the background of the Russian war of aggression on Ukraine, Makeyev said he deliberately refrained from laying wreaths and flowers at Soviet memorials.
No country has more war dead to mourn than the Soviet Union or Russia: 13,000,000 soldiers and 14,000,000 civilians (source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_II_casualties)
Am I the only one who finds it shameful that war commemorations of the Second World War in Germany are only reported from the perspective of Ukraine? Am I the only one who finds it shameful that the country with the highest blood toll is excluded from commemoration? Are the Russian dead of the Second World War worth less than all the others? What is the value of "news" that produces such reports?
Shouldn't a "good Germany" ((https://www.bpb.de/system/files/dokument_pdf/M%2002.24%20Kinderhymne.pdf), a good Federal President, have invited the Russian ambassador to a joint commemoration today, especially against the background of the war in Ukraine?

Sonntag, 2. Oktober 2022

Marxlohland by Stephanie Heidamowicz

Preview at the Catholic Church in Petershof in Marxloh.
Just as Alice Agneskirchner did in 1994 with Rauliens Revier about Duisburg Bruckhausen, which is not so far away, Stephanie Heidowicz and her camerawoman Kathrin Hartmann succeed in taking a look of the people in Marxloh. Far removed from the politicians' gossip about a no-go area or multi-culti rapture, she looks at problems and successes. Camera and interviews are always close to the people, but never revealing or voyeuristic.
Runs soon at filmforum. Don't miss it!!!

Saturday, October 1st 2022

Brexit finally delivered

Boris Johnson was proud on having delivered Brexit. But it is only with Liz Truss as prime minister and her mini-budget is the goal of Brexit really achieved: To turn Britain into a super-casino for the super-rich.

Thursday, September 8, 2022

Elizabeth II Windsor dies at Balmoral.

With Elizabeth II dies the last acute "politician" of the generation Second World War. Her reign lasted longer than any other. How will it continue?

Tuesday, August 30, 2022

Dresden Residence Palace

The Residenzschloss in Dresden has been restored in the "best-of" style of all eras, as one would have liked it to look, but it never actually looked in the past. In order to make it as pleasing as possible to today's superficial eyes, those architectural styles were always selected from all those found on the building during the restoration that were most congenial to today's tourist ideas, without regard for historical sincerity.
This "technique" runs through the entire Dresden Old Town, from pseudo-Baroque houses to the Frauenkirche, rebuilt in full Baroque splendor.
As if the 20th century had not taken place. This reconstruction is deeply revisionist and not an isolated case. In view of this, one no longer wonders about a revisionist german foreign policy.

Tuessay, May 10, 2022

Day of the Bookburning

Places where books burned
Ein Onlineatlas zu den Orten der nationalsozialistischen Bücherverbrennungen 1933.

Sunday, February 27, 2022

SPD bids farewell to Willy Brandt's legacy

Anyone who now goes on "peace demonstrations" and does not demand an end to all arms deliveries, who does not demand immediate withdrawal from NATO or possibly even collects or gives money for the Ukrainian army, is not standing for peace but pouring oil on the fire.

Having moved away from his social policy legacy twenty years ago, the SPD in the Bundestag is now ending Willy Brandt's foreign policy legacy. They should remove his monument from their party headquarters. At least that would be honest.

And the press? As to be expected: a disaster. The Bundestag, the government, the press, the demonstrators. Germany in a collective war frenzy. As of today, Germany is a nation of warmongers. But it is in the very idea of the "nation" that it ends this way.

It is human nature that strong feelings cannot be prolonged indefinitely, neither in a single individual nor in a nation, and the military organisation knows this. It therefore needs artificial incitement, a constant doping of excitement, and this incitement service was to be provided - with good or bad conscience, honestly or out of professional routine - by the intellectuals, the poets, the writers, the journalists. They had beaten the drum of hatred and beat it vigorously until every unprejudiced person's ears rang and heart shuddered. Almost all of them in Germany, France, Italy, Russia and Belgium obediently served the war propaganda and thus the mass delusion and mass hatred of the war instead of fighting it.

Zweig, Stefan: Die Welt von Gestern. Erinnerungen eines Europäers. (1944 erschienen.)

Sunday, 20th February 2022

Europe at war can be thought and spoken aloud again.

What happened to the "Never again!" of 1918 and 1945? Why did the EU win the Nobel Peace Prize ten years ago (2012)? Today, the possibilities of war in Europe can once again be thought about and debated openly and with impunity.

Arms lobbyists like the Munich "security" conference and warmongers such as NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and the German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock are constantly pouring fuel on the fire without anybody cutting them off.

That is why I would like to remind you very LOUDLY and clearly here of a text by Wolfgang Borchert (1921-1947) which seems to have been forgotten by too many people.

Let my NO! be clearly audibly shouted out into the world.

Please find an english translation on http://www.swans.com/library/art13/xxx123.html

Wolfgang Borchert

Dann gibt es nur eins!

Du. Mann an der Maschine und Mann in der Werkstatt. Wenn sie dir morgen befehlen, du sollst keine Wasserrohre und keine Kochtöpfe mehr machen - sondern Stahlhelme und Maschinengewehre. dann gibt es nur eins:


Du. Mädchen hinterm Ladentisch und Mädchen im Büro. Wenn sie dir morgen befehlen, du sollst Granaten füllen und Zielfernrohre für Scharfschützengewehre montieren, dann gibt es nur eins:


Du. Besitzer der Fabrik. Wenn sie dir morgen befehlen, du sollst
statt Puder und Kakao Schießpulver verkaufen, dann gibt es nur eins:


Du. Forscher im Laboratorium. Wenn sie dir morgen befehlen, du sollst einen neuen Tod erfinden gegen das alte Leben, dann gibt es nur eins:


Du. Dichter in deiner Stube. Wenn sie dir morgen befehlen, du sollst keine Liebeslieder, du sollst Haßlieder singen, dann gibt es nur eins:


Du. Arzt am Krankenbett. Wenn sie dir morgen befehlen, du sollst die Männer kriegstauglich schreiben, dann gibt es nur eins:


Du. Pfarrer auf der Kanzel. Wenn sie dir morgen befehlen, du sollst den Mord segnen und den Krieg heilig sprechen, dann gibt es nur eins:


Du. Kapitän auf dem Dampfer. Wenn sie dir morgen befehlen, du sollst keinen Weizen mehr fahren - sondern Kanonen und Panzer, dann gibt es nur eins:


Du. Pilot auf dem Flugfeld. Wenn sie dir morgen befehlen, du sollst Bomben und Phosphor über die Städte tragen, dann gibt es nur eins:


Du. Schneider auf deinem Brett. Wenn sie dir morgen befehlen, du sollst Uniformen zuschneiden, dann gibt es nur eins:


Du. Richter im Talar. Wenn sie dir morgen befehlen, du sollst zum Kriegsgericht gehen, dann gibt es nur eins:


Du. Mann auf dem Bahnhof. Wenn sie dir morgen befehlen, du sollst das Signal zur Abfahrt geben für den Munitionszug und für den Truppentransport, dann gibt es nur eins:


Du. Mann auf dem Dorf und Mann in der Stadt. Wenn sie morgen kommen und dir den Gestellungsbefehl bringen, dann gibt es nur eins:


Du. Mutter in der Normandie und Mutter in der Ukraine, du, Mutter in Frisko und London, du, am Hoangho und am Mississippi, du, Mutter in Neapel und Hamburg und Kairo und Oslo - Mütter in allen Erdteilen, Mütter in der Welt, wenn sie morgen befehlen, ihr sollt Kinder gebären, Krankenschwestern für Kriegslazarette und neue Soldaten für neue Schlachten, Mütter in der Welt, dann gibt es nur eins:

Sagt NEIN! Mütter, sagt NEIN!

Denn wenn ihr nicht NEIN sagt, wenn IHR nicht nein sagt, Mütter, dann:

In den lärmenden dampfdunstigen Hafenstädten werden die großen Schiffe stöhnend verstummen und wie titanische Mammutkadaver wasserleichig träge gegen die toten vereinsamten Kaimauern schwanken, algen-, tang- und muschelüberwest den früher so schimmernden dröhnenden Leib, friedhöflich fischfaulig duftend, mürbe, siech, gestorben -
die Straßenbahnen werden wie sinnlose glanzlose glasäugige Käfige blöde verbeult und abgeblättert neben den verwirrten Stahlskeletten der Drähte und Gleise liegen, hinter morschen dachdurchlöcherten Schuppen, in verlorenen kraterzerrissenen Straßen -
eine schlammgraue dickbreiige bleierne Stille wird sich heranwälzen, gefräßig, wachsend, wird anwachsen in den Schulen und Universitäten und Schauspielhäusern, auf Sport- und Kinderspielplätzen, grausig und gierig, unaufhaltsam -
der sonnige saftige Wein wird an den verfallenen Hängen verfaulen, der Reis wird in der verdorrten Erde vertrocknen, die Kartoffel wird auf den brachliegenden Äckern erfrieren und die Kühe werden ihre totsteifen Beine wie umgekippte Melkschemel in den Himmel strecken -
in den Instituten werden die genialen Erfindungen der großen Ärzte sauer werden, verrotten, pilzig verschimmeln -
in den Küchen, Kammern und Kellern, in den Kühlhäusern und Speichern werden die letzten Säcke Mehl, die letzten Gläser Erdbeeren, Kürbis und Kirschsaft verkommen - das Brot unter den umgestürzten Tischen und auf zersplitterten Tellern wird grün werden und die ausgelaufene Butter wird stinken wie Schmierseife, das Korn auf den Feldern wird neben verrosteten Pflügen hingesunken sein wie ein erschlagenes Heer und die qualmenden Ziegelschornsteine, die Essen und die Schlote der stampfenden Fabriken werden, vom ewigen Gras zugedeckt, zerbröckeln — zerbröckeln — zerbröckeln —
dann wird der letzte Mensch, mit zerfetzten Gedärmen und verpesteter Lunge, antwortlos und einsam unter der giftig glühenden Sonne und unter wankenden Gestirnen umherirren, einsam zwischen den unübersehbaren Massengräbern und den kalten Götzen der gigantischen betonklotzigen verödeten Städte, der letzte Mensch, dürr, wahnsinnig, lästernd, klagend - und seine furchtbare Klage: WARUM? wird ungehört in der Steppe verrinnen, durch die geborstenen Ruinen wehen, versickern im Schutt der Kirchen, gegen Hochbunker klatschen, in Blutlachen fallen, ungehört, antwortlos, letzter Tierschrei des letzten Tieres Mensch – all dieses wird eintreffen, morgen, morgen vielleicht, vielleicht heute nacht schon, vielleicht heute nacht, wenn – wenn –
wenn ihr nicht NEIN sagt.

Sunday, 3. October 2021

Walter Kaufmann - Welch ein Leben. (What a life)

Walter Kaufmann, born in Berlin in 1924, lived in Duisburg until his escape in 1938, led an impressive and impressive life. He died on April 15, 2021, at the age of 97.

I was fortunate to experience him at two readings in Duisburg. I recommend, to look at the film absolutely.

Saturday, 18 September 2021

Rescue Chain for Human Rights #HandInHand

I was alerted to this important action by the newsletter of the Buchhandlung Scheuermann. A human chain from Hamburg to the Adriatic coast.

For more info, please go to https://www.rettungskette.eu/de/home/

First comes the food, then comes the morals. Bertold Brecht
About forty participants managed to form a human chain in Wanheimerort from the height of "Fischerstr." to the height of "Im Schlenk", i.e. roughly along the DVG stop. Quite few, in my opinion. All the more thanks to everyone who was there.
Many shoppers were not interested.

Friday, 27 November 2020

Make Amazon Pay instead of Black Friday

Among the winners of the Corona crisis is clearly Amazon. Nevertheless, the company does not pay adequate taxes anywhere in the world, but exploits its employees. Reason enough not to participate in actions like BlackFriday.
more information at https://makeamazonpay.com/

Thursday, 10 September 2020

City Palace of the Hohenzollerns

While in other countries people are demolishing monuments, in Germany the Hohenzollern city palace is being rebuilt. The family that usurped the whole of Germany with wars and violence and played a major role in instigating the First World War.
That is also a statement.

Addendum (10. September 2021):
Interessanting outside view, here from Guardian: https://www.theguardian.com/culture/2021/sep/09/berlin-museum-humboldt-forum
Like an imposing Disneyland castle minus the fun, the Humboldt Forum stands in the middle of Berlin’s Museum Island, its beige walls and freshly carved stonework gleaming with the unreal quality of a high-definition digital model. Pieced together from photographic records, it is a simulacrum for the media age: a reconstructed image of a palace, made from images, to project an image of an idealised past. The sense of encountering a stage set is confirmed when you turn the corner and find the eastern facade has shed the period costume altogether. It greets the River Spree with a stripped-back concrete grid, giving chilling echoes of the more recent fascist past.

Monday, 15 June 2020

The death of George Floyd and the aftermath

After the murder of George Floyd on 25 May 2020, people took to the streets against racism in many places. In Bristol on 11 June 2020, an angry crowd toppled the monument to slave trader Edward Colston from its plinth and plunged it into the dock.

It's cheap to get upset about racism in the US and then buy a schnitzel at a sensationalist price because George Floyd works for Tönnies and similar companies in Germany.

Perhaps it is not only time to reconsider whose memory one honours with monuments and street names. Duisburg, for example, also has a Kaiser-Wilhelm-Straße and a Friedrich-Wilhelm-Platz and Friedrich-Wilhelm-Straße. In numerous cities there are Hindenburg streets or Ernst-Moritz-Arndt grammar schools. And perhaps history has to be told differently. Many of the medieval, early modern princes were little more than warlords who exploited and bullied their population.

Perhaps history needs to be told much more along the lines of Bertolt Brecht:


Who built the seven-gated Thebes?
In the books are the names of kings.
Did the kings bring the boulders?
And Babylon, which was destroyed many times,
Who rebuilt it so many times ? In what houses
Of golden Lima did the builders dwell ?
Where went the evening the Chinese wall was finished
. The masons? Great Rome
Is full of triumphal arches. Over whom
Did the Caesars triumph? Did the much-vaunted Byzantium
Only palaces for its inhabitants? Even in the legendary Atlantis
roared in the night, when the sea swallowed it
The earth-rising ones for their slaves.
Young Alexander conquered India.
He alone?
Caesar beat the Gauls.
Didn't he at least have a cook with him?
Philip of Spain wept when his fleet
was sunk. Did no one else weep?
Frederick the Second was victorious in the Seven Years' War. Who
Won besides him?
Each side a victory.
Who cooked the victory feast?
Every ten years a great man.
Who paid the expenses?

So many reports,
So many questions.

Friday, 8 May 2020

End of the war in Europe

On 8 May 1985, the then German President Richard von Weizsäcker gave a speech commemorating the end of the war in Europe. He concluded with the words:

Do not let yourself be driven into enmity and hatred
against other people,
against Russians or Americans,
against Jews or Turks,
against alternative or conservative,
against black or white.
Learn to live with each other, not against each other.
Let us, too, as democratically elected politicians, always take this to heart and set an example.
Let us honour freedom.
Let us work for peace.
Let us abide by the law.
Let us serve our inner standards of justice.
Today, May 8, let us face the truth as best we can.

You can find the entire speech in the webarchive of the German Bundestag:

You can listen to the speech here:

Also in my lecture on the Sound of the 20th Century, Part 1 features the end of the war. The last Wehrmacht report of 9 May 1945.

20:00 and 3 minutes. Reichssender Flensburg and affiliated stations. Today we bring you the last Wehrmacht report of this war. From the headquarters of the Grand Admiral, 9 May 1945. The High Command of the Wehrmacht announces. ... Since midnight the weapons have been silent on all fronts. By order of the Grand Admiral, the Wehrmacht has ceased fighting, which has become hopeless. This marks the end almost six years of heroic struggle. It has brought us great victories, but also heavy defeats. In the end, the German Wehrmacht was honourably defeated by a huge superior force. We brought you the text of the last Wehrmacht report of this war. There is a radio silence of 3 minutes.

Tuesday, 28 April 2020

Those who are rich can make quarantine comfortable

Edgar Allan Poe was already aware that if you are rich, you can make your life more comfortable, even in a crisis. more comfortable, even in a crisis. Somehow the story also reminds me of the German Football League.

Edgar Allan Poe: Die Maske des roten Todes.


Wednesday, 8 April 2020

Emily Dickinson voluntarily chooses social distancing as a way of life

Emily Dickinson was born in Amherst, Massachusetts in 1830. Apart from a short trip to Washington and Philadelphia, she did not leave her hometown. First as nurse to her sick mother, then voluntarily, she rarely left the house in which she lived. She spent almost her entire life in what is now called social distancing. Nevertheless, she was interested in the world and the things that were going on inside it. She kept numerous lively correspondences.

Her main influences were the works of William Shakespeare and the Bible. Downright modern are her sceptical, almost existentialist worldview and her experiments with language and verse. Often inspired by the rhythm of church hymns and psalms, she brings together intense images, dispensing a syntactical structure.

She sent many of her poems with her letters to friends and acquaintances. When she died in Amherst in 1886, of the 1,799 poems she left behind, only seven had been published.

I am now also planning an entire evening about Emily Dickinson.

'Hope' is the thing with feathers -
That perches in the soul -
And sings the tune without the words -
And never stops - at all -

And sweetest - in the Gale - is heard -
And sore must be the storm -
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm -

I've heard it in the chillest land -
And on the strangest Sea -
Yet - never - in Extremity,
It asked a crumb - of me.