Dresden. Germany. Solidarity text for the accused people in the Dresden §129 trial.
Originally published by Kontrapolis.
On 8th of September a process against comrades and friends will begin in Dresden. They are accused of building and taking part in a criminal organization under the legal paragraph §129. All in all ten people are accused, however the prosecutor has decided to split the „group“ and now the first four of them stand trial. Lina is one those selected for the first „group“. She was initially arrested last summer, released after a few days and arrested again in November. Since then she has been in preventative detention. It appears Lina will stay incarcerated for the duration of the trial. This strategy not only divides the constructed group of the accused, but also makes any discussion and discourse between the accused and those in solidarity difficult or even impossible.
All of them are accused of beating up Nazis in various different situations. Lina’s case is unique in that she is made responsible for every attack on Nazis during the last years in which one of the nazis claimed that a woman took part in the offensive. Cops and the Justice system believe the Nazi testimonies. This narrative fits perfectly into their partriarchal world view, which sees it as extremely unusual for a female person to take part in counterviolence. Thus it must always be the same woman .
Repression and the §129
The repression strategy that the state is following is not new. Repression is a consequence of resistance to the ruling patriarchal, fascist, capitalist, authoritarianand violent system. The idea of constructing their own suitable umbrella organisation- in this case the „antifascists“- and often including any people they are interested in, is also well known. We have seen it in many §129 cases in Germany, but also in other countries; the Ley Mordaza law in Spain and anti-terror laws in Chile and Italy are just some examples. This is an attempt by the state to create a suitable organization in ordesolltenr to utilize more tools of investigation and monitoring with the result of higher more numerous charges against individuals. In this context being accused of an action planned and undertaken as part of a group also leads to more severe sentences than being investigated or charged as an individual. Individualization, isolation and distancing from individuals, groups, friends and comrades is the main goal and the message is clear: any kind of supposed connection, collectivity or individual initiative we may have which opposes the system is enough for the state to charge us with §129, regardless of whether they exist or not. In this particular case, the state is applying a newer interpretation of the law that allows it to group people together in a §129 simply because they share similar ideas or are follow a particular political ideology.
Since their constructed grouping is necessarily hierarchical, as this is the state’s understanding of an organization, it therefore requires a leader. This means somebody will be declared to hold this role, and will thus carry the main juridical responsibility.
Lina is somehow presented as this so-called leader of the organization. However she was made the leader along with her boyfriend, who, in the eyes of the state, was responsible for her radicalization. By arresting her and prosecuting the accused under this paragraph, the state is trying to intimidate the movement.
One of the goals of those in power is to destroy any developing connections between the movement and other communities using a strategy in which they attempt to quash any budding radicalization in the struggles and divide people by forcing them to distance themselves from radical action . They play with the societal recognition of bourgeois anti-fascism and believe that they minimize the acceptance of the necessity of counter-violence with their guilty verdicts.
For us, It does not matter who the state considers a guilty. We fight this state and it’s institutions and we do not validate its notions of morality, guilt and justice. We stand in solidarity with the accused persons beyond personal relationships and affinities. At a time when the state aims to isolate us, we are here to build bridges of communication and comradeship.
We approve of the fact that nazis were attacked. Counterviolence is a necessary step to change society and it won’t be judged by us in the legal framework of the system we are aiming to destroy. Defending the persecuted person in a framework of innocence and guilt is a trap we should not and will not fall into. Instead we are in solidarity with the accused, as they are affected by the repressive apparatus of the state.
In favour of militant Antifascism and beyond
This trial is not however only an attack on the persecuted people. It is also an attempt to de-legitimize self defense and militant antifasicm. When nazis and fascists attack and destroy communities or when there are nazi pogroms against immigrants, our stance is to defend ourselves against their violence and to prevent any attempt to legitimize fascist practices in any field of activity.
Nonviolence protects the state
Since violence carried out by the state, capital and the systemic mechanisms inside and outside their institutional frameworks exists in and/or characterizes our everyday lives, counter-violence is an inevitable and indispensable tool. Fascists cannot be educated, they cannot be persuaded not to vote NPD, AFD etc, and they are not misguided. They choose to serve and sustain a system based on discrimination and oppression, they choose to attack and for these reasons our self defense is necessary.
We do not use counter-violence in order to impose ourselves on people nor do we use it to dominate and destroy others. We are under a constant attack and we therefore defend ourselves and our communities, with a perspective that aims for emancipation, freedom, autonomy and equality. These moments are just a small answer to the violence we experience every day. There are moments when the oppressors feel afraid, as in those when the nazis were attacked in Thuringia and Saxony in the course of the last years.
For us it is important to develop every antagonistic reaction in a projectuality. In order not to let the attacks on Nazis degenerate into symbolic action, we must simultaneously attack the authoritarian bourgeois democracy, which while not only oppressive itself, provides the circumstances for fascism to grow. Either anti-fascism embeds itself in an anti-authoritarian perspective, or it is simply a ritual formality. Any path that does not aim towards radical subversion and self-determination is tragically doomed to fail, with resistance withering into democratic comformism and a slow and inescapable slide towards the ultimate loss of freedom.
It is important not to follow the narrative presented by by cops and media, who obviously work together and follow a common goal in creating a mood that will weaken the movement. The strategies they use, such as background articles, warrents and the comparison of us and nazis has a historical continuity in Germany. We are presented as extremists, with nazis on the other extreme of the spectrum and a responsible capitalist democracy in the middle as the only legitimate actor. This is particularly obvious in the comparisons made between Lina and BeateZschäpe and the fact they share the same prison.The §129 and the targeting of so called criminal organizations serves their propaganda against any radical movement and attempts to scare people and give the impression of a strong omniscient state. This propaganda concerning the creation of criminal organizations is a state strategy and an attack on self organization, collectivity and relationships.
For Lina the media and cop propaganda also targets her gender. The fact that a woman is accused in this kind of crime serves the justice and media as a moment of polarization. They present her in a sexist way, with continual reference to her relationship to a man and confusion as to why a woman would take this path. We see that suspicious women are either masculinized or pathologized, with their actions being seen as the result of their temperament or an emotional defect. In yet another case we see how a woman is described in the media as a female seducer with all the associated attributes, and demonized by means of these. On the other hand, in the eyes of more leftist media she is pictured as an innocent „girl“. This image is also detrimental to the group of accused and the movement. The woman is also in every case merely the girlfriend of somebody.
In the course of the whole controversy, we must strive to go deeper against the punitive system, which reproduces patriarchy in its pure form
On top of the mass media and state propaganda the Nazis are also using the opportunity of a divided public opinion regarding the case to make their own propganda, as victims of the radical left movement. They invented various methods of publication to out the accused people and call for fascist counterattacks on us. They gained information from cops and used their closed and open propaganda channels to spread as many details as possible, specifically targeting the accused and those in their surroundings.
In the eyes of the state, the mainstream media and the cops we are criminals and enemies, because of our ideas of freedom and our practices in fighting the system. We should not follow their definitions, but stand together against their repression.
But what would state repression be without its functionaries? For now the case is in the hands of the Federal Public Prosecutor, a political institution and choice which reveals the political extensions and implications of this trial. For this reason we have nothing to expect from the procedure in the court room. An emancipatory fight should be given in the streets, by creating pressure and political cost for their decisions. While the state creates charges and constructs relationships in order to fight antifascism, our place is on the streets, where we must attempt to break isolation and fear by creating new relationships and connections. This is the place where we can truly fight this repression and socially legitimize our struggles.
Repression is part of our struggle and we have to face it together. In a system where the problems demand to be solved in a personal way, we propose collective solutions. For this reason we call everyone to show their solidarity with the accused, and so their presence on the first day of the court procedure on the 8th of September in Dresden. Lets stand together and show that an attack on one of us is an attack on all of us. We are here, in solidarity with the accused people, against repression, and in support of militant antifascism which goes beyond attacking nazis and infiltrates the system with our ideas of liberty, non-hierarchy and mutual self organization.
Come to the manifestation in Dresden on the 8th of september. More information on https://www.soli-antifa-ost.org/
NO ONE IS ALONE IN THE HANDS OF THE STATE