The Bebelplatz on a sunny afternoon, there is almost perfect silence. Anyone who knows Berlin-Mitte knows that this is actually impossible. But on Sunday afternoon, during the minute of silence commemorating the victims of right-wing terrorism, it was finally possible in Halle.
Thousands of people came to express their solidarity with the victims of right-wing extremist violence four days after the attack with two dead people under the motto #No footing. The police have blocked a section of the boulevard Unter den Linden, so that the people are close to the Bebelplatz to the gates of Humboldt University. There members of the Alliance #Unteilbar have built an impromptu stage in the hold of a truck.
"What we experience is a catastrophe and not a warning sign," says indivisible spokesman Ario Mirzae. He refers to a formulation by CDU chief Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, who had said that the anti-Semitic attack of Halle was "an alarm signal" that could leave no one untouched.
"For me, the police car belongs to the synagogue like the Star of David on the roof"
The people who gathered on Bebelplatz on Sunday can not go far enough. On the scene, activists and representatives of the Jewish community call for a more consistent approach by the security authorities, more protection for Jewish institutions, and above all, more moral courage.
Every single person has the responsibility to speak out against anti-Semitism, sexism, homophobia and xenophobia, says Mischa Ushakov, president of the Jewish Students Union: "We have to demonstrate in everyday life that we are more than just demos Cuddling minded people - even if I'm very grateful to you. "
He has been used to bulletproof glass, machine guns and security locks since he was a small boy, says Ushakov. "For me, the police car belongs to the synagogue like the Star of David on the roof." But after the attack on Halle, he had for the first time really known "what the security guards are protecting me from."
Two young American women of Jewish faith call for dialogue from the stage: "Speak to the people with whom the conversation is difficult, because they are the ones who harm us." They demand that racist and xenophobic family members, fellow human beings or politicians confront their prejudices.
"A terrible price for the brats of the police"
Reinhard Borgmann of the Jewish Forum for Democracy and Against Anti-Semitism says the two fatalities of Halle are "a terrible price for the brats of the police and the lack of sensitivity to the dangers of anti-Semitism".
Of course, not every synagogue and Jewish school could have an anti-terrorist unit at any time. "But what kind of society is that in which you have to do such considerations at all?" Borgmann asks and reaps great applause.
Again and again on Sunday afternoon, the actions of the NSU and the failure of the security authorities is reminiscent of a decades-long tradition of right-wing extremist networks and violence. "The consternation is appropriate, but not the surprise," says the 28-year-old student Christian the SPIEGEL.
He lived in Halle himself and can not understand why legal terrorism has only recently become a major topic. One must finally "honestly look" to fully discover the right structures in the police and judiciary.
"The control of the Internet must be clearly strengthened"
The manner in which Halle was attacked, apparently inspired by the Christchurch attack in New Zealand, also worries people. "The control of the Internet must be clearly strengthened in this parallel world, which opens up there, must be cleaned up," says the 70-year-old Berliner Karin Siewert. Others, however, have no understanding that Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer now wants to monitor "the gamers scene" more.
The Sunday afternoon gathering is nowhere near the dimensions of last year's # indivisible demonstration. But with the mass demonstration of 2018, she has in common that it is by no means monothematic.
For example, the left-wing politician Ferat Kocak from Berlin-Neukölln, who himself was the target of a far-right arson attack at the beginning of 2018, also addresses inequalities in the real estate market, environmental policy and the rescue of the sea. On the protest sign of a "grandma against the right" stuck a sticker of "Fridays for Future", other participants wave capitalism critical banners.
When the protest march arrives at the synagogue, pianist Igor Levit stands there on the improvised stage. "If we have a task, then it is to show that there is a living counter-narrative in this country," says Levit. There are a tremendous number of people who live together. "Because if we are not a society of togetherness, we are not a society at all." Before the meeting dissolves, it gets very quiet again. Then the sounds of a piece by Johann Sebastian Bach will sound.