A Tale of Two Protests

Boris Reitschuster is a German journalist and vlogger. The following video is excerpted from his livestream at the Alexanderplatz in Berlin last weekend, where BLM supporters were staging a violent protest. Mr. Reitschuster interleaves his reporting with shots from the demonstration that had been held three weeks previously to protest the Coronavirus restrictions. The comparison between the behavior of the protesters during the two demos is instructive, as is the difference in the enforcement of social distancing by police.

Many thanks to MissPiggy for the translation, and to Vlad Tepes for the subtitling:

Video transcript:

00:00   Reporting from the Front in Charlottengrad
00:05   Hello and good evening. This time from downtown Berlin, not from Charlottengrad.
00:09   I was here at an Antifa demonstration, and it was a really risky business.
00:13   It was riotous, and glass bottles were thrown. One flew by my face.
00:18   A cola can flew at me and a police officer was able to knock it away.
00:23   I thought he was going to hit me. Today was an exhausting day.
00:28   Some instances were really grueling, and I was scared.
00:34   Have a look at my report from Berlin.
00:44   When I arrived at Alexanderplatz, I couldn’t believe my eyes.
00:47   All throughout Berlin, at the anti-Corona demonstrations, protesters were
00:51   constantly being told to adhere to the social distancing rule of keeping 1.5 meters’ distance.
00:56   In the last few weeks, demonstrations were ended and cleared
01:00   for not maintaining the 1.5 meter distance. Today, just 2 km away, on July 17th St.,
01:08   social distancing isn’t an issue for leftists
01:13   who are protesting against racism.
01:18   The proximity between people was a reminder of pre-Corona conditions.
01:23   This forces us to ask the question: Why does one group have to adhere to the Corona rules
01:29   and the others get a free pass to do what they want?
01:35   There are only two answers. Either it isn’t as dangerous as they say,
01:39   or it is being called dangerous for political reasons.
01:46   I don’t see a third possibility.
01:52   Riotous scenes kept reoccurring, then the police would remove single demonstrators.
01:58   That led to the other demonstrators attempting to free them from police custody.
02:01   Some of them threw bottles or other objects. They were even throwing stones.
02:40   Now you’ll see a police being hit with a bottle.
02:44   This time it wasn’t particularly serious, but that wasn’t always the case.
02:49   That evening the police reported that several officers were injured, along with a cameraman.
02:55   When I read the report, I had to remember the scene in which I was also nearly hit with a bottle.
03:03   Here you can hear the sound of the bottle hitting.
03:07   This startled me and I lost control of my camera.
03:14   Another reoccurrence was protesters shouting down the police as Nazis.
03:27   In a few seconds, a piece of wood flies toward the officers.
03:33   Here are the proud throwers.
03:54   The police prove they have the patience of angels.
03:57   They only remove people from the crowd who are really aggressive or throw things at them.
04:05   Such a huge contrast to the way the police were behaving two or three weeks ago. Dragging away
04:11   peaceful, helpless demonstrators and taking them into custody at the anti-Corona demonstrations.
04:17   As you can see on the left side of the screen, the former DDR civil rights activist Angelika Barbe.
04:22   Her crime was that she was standing outside on the Alexander Platz.
04:25   After watching these images, you have to ask yourself, what has changed in the last few weeks?
04:30   Has the virus changed how it behaves? Has the virus made social distancing redundant?
04:37   Or is this about politics? Those in line with establishment politics are permitted to do as they please,
04:42   but those who aren’t, don’t?
04:57   Only when this woman vehemently resisted did the police take her into custody.
05:06   Thank you very much. —No, no. Not on the street.
05:15   This is how scenes of police violence could be fabricated.
05:25   Suddenly everything is peaceful. In contrast to
05:28   the former DDR civil rights activist Angelika Barbe,
05:31   this young lady wasn’t arrested. Here she is standing very peacefully with the police.
05:38   What a contrast to the images I recorded three weeks ago, just around the corner.
05:44   This is how anti-Corona protesters were treated. —Is this still Germany? Are these human rights?
05:53   I can’t believe this! Am I a threatening criminal? Ow! That hurts!
06:10   Anti-Corona protesters didn’t throw things like glass or other objects at the police
06:13   like the BLM protesters did, as here on the ground.
06:18   Chant: All together, oppose fascism.
06:25   A police officer says to me: “You can film, but please keep your distance!” —Yeah, sure.
06:29   I answer: “Although they aren’t really taking the distancing seriously.”
06:32   Yeah, I have to, just keep your distance. —Yeah, OK.
06:36   Chant: All of Berlin hates the police.
06:44   Chant: “We are peaceful, what are you?”
06:57   Suddenly, I feel something hit my shoulder. It was the police officer next to me.
07:01   It takes me a couple of seconds to realize what happened. The officer prevented a cola can
07:06   from hitting me. In this case the police officer was a friendly helper.
07:13   That’s why the camera is shaky. —Thank you. You knocked it away? —Yes. —Thanks!
07:20   Chant: Hop, Hop, Hop, rocks in the air!
07:26   This was the situation at the Alexander Platz for a long time. The order to break up and remove
07:32   the demonstration from the area was not executed. Social distancing wasn’t enforced at all.
07:41   I pay for you! We pay for your job. For you job, we pay.
07:53   I live here, I’m staying. Berlin is my city!
08:01   This man tells the police officer: “You’re the s***! You’re the man!
08:05   You’re happy about yourself, right? Your ego is all boosted up now. Now you have a bigger d***.”
08:12   At that moment, I’m really glad not to be a police officer. I’m not sure how I’d react.
08:18   Especially after being pelted with rocks and bottles.
08:44   As I have done at other demonstrations, I would gladly have spoken with participants
08:48   to find out what motivated them and listen to their views. The police strongly advised me NOT to
08:52   do that. I’m afraid they were correct. Any attempt to make contact could have ended badly.
08:57   Only on one occasion did a participant come up to me and ask, well more like challenged me,
09:05   to objectively report on the entire mess. His meaning of “mess” was the behavior of the police.
09:12   The following was the dialog that occurred: So what exactly do you mean? What should I record?
09:17   The many instances of small children being violently pushed by the police.
09:25   I was almost hit by a glass bottle myself and I stood…
09:34   Sorry, sorry. —I stood near the police officers and was nearly hit with a glass bottle.
09:39   Another time, a cola bottle nearly hit my head, but a police officer deflected it.
09:43   Personally, my experience was that the violence started with the demonstrators.
09:48   I also saw that, and immediately intervened, so that it doesn’t happen anymore.
09:52   Believe me, there many people here that oppose that kind of behavior and want to
09:57   make sure that violence isn’t used. I have chanted many times, we are peaceful, what are you?
10:01   For that reason, I will make sure zero violence is used here. —What about other people that do?
10:07   Unfortunately, not all of us here have the attitude. I think that’s sad.
10:11   It is also difficult for the police officers when they are pelted with bottles. Just like I was.
10:15   That isn’t exactly a positive image for the demonstrators. —That’s right, that’s right.
10:19   You can’t discern which ones are bad or good. That’s right.
10:24   But… we are human.
10:28   There are only two races: animals and humans. But… not police and humans.
10:34   It’s the same situation as with the right wingers. There are neo-Nazis that show up,
10:37   that are violent, and those that are peaceful like you now. It is very similar, actually.
10:42   Sorry, I just want to move beyond all this. —OK, thank you.
10:51   What remained behind was perplexity on both sides.
11:04   At this point, I was reminded by the police officers to keep my distance.
11:07   On that day, it seemed as if journalists were the only ones that needed to keep their distance.
11:12   At least according to the police. —You aren’t following the social distancing rule at all, are you?
11:17   Now, another random character enters the scene. Perhaps another naughty journalist.
11:22   Or a demonstrator. He kept shouting “S****y Americans”. An officer answered by saying:
11:29   “We don’t like you, either.” —You’re going to come with me, OK? We’re going for a little walk.
11:34   Or should I hold you up here a while? —I’m fine. —Will you please go in that direction.
11:39   This is all because of the s****y Americans. The police officer.
11:45   The Americans did this. This s*** here. —We don’t want that either.
11:53   About a half an hour later, a remnant of Antifa demonstrators is on the move.
11:57   They are still not responding to orders to leave the premises. So now the police
12:01   finally begin to say something. —Because you are not practicing social distancing,
12:05   you are being instructed to vacate the premises while keeping distance from one another.
12:12   If you do not comply with these instructions, the police will begin to clear the area
12:20   and you will be charged with disorderly conduct or a criminal offense.
12:25   After four hours, the police start to enforce the law when hardly anyone is left and
12:32   with nearly no one violating the social distancing rules. Law and order, Berlin style.
12:38   Instead, as a journalist, I’m told to remove myself and to get on the sidewalk
12:46   because it’s a problem for public order to be a journalist nowadays.
12:52   The way the mainstream media reported the events was interesting.
12:56   After a quick Google search, you’d get the impression that there were only peaceful protests.
13:00   Elsewhere, for example on Tagesschau.de and the Tagesspiegel, the nationwide protests
13:07   against racism, including the one here in Berlin at Alexanderplatz, were “crowded, but peaceful”.
13:13   A reader breezing over the news wouldn’t have a clue about the problems. The first three lines
13:19   were enough. Love, peace and harmony. Only the readers that make it
13:24   to the fourth or fifth paragraph found out that it wasn’t completely peaceful.
13:27   [In bold: At first peaceful, then rocks and bottles flew]
13:30   Does any even read articles to the fourth or fifth paragraph anymore?
13:34   However, the German Police Union gave a striking report on how it judged
13:41   the aggressiveness. [Tweet: Aggressiveness against the police reached a new level]
13:45   But the crown goes to the Tagesschau nightly news at 8pm. —Following the violent death of
13:49   a black man named George Floyd in the U.S.A., numerous people took to the streets worldwide,
13:53   to protest against racism and police violence. —Everyone complied with the social distancing
13:59   and face mask rules, for the most part. —Racist police violence also exists here.
14:03   After the events ended in Berlin and Hamburg, there were isolated incidents of clashes between
14:09   the demonstrators and the police. Nationwide, the demonstration remained mostly peaceful.
14:15   That’s a lie. My video shows clashes occurred DURING and not after the demonstration.
14:23   But how would anyone working at ZDF or ARD know that, since they weren’t even on location?
14:29   One could feel even a little embarrassed for taxpayer-funded media.
14:33   With a budget of 800 million paid from our taxes.
14:38   As a decent journalist should, I reviewed everything and tried put myself in the shoes
14:45   of my journalist colleagues. I scrutinized myself with the question:
14:49   Did I view things over-dramatically? Let’s look at the big picture: at least no one was killed,
14:55   and there weren’t too many injuries. But not even mention it? Or just mention it in passing twice?
15:03   No, that’s not just simply sloppy journalism. I think it’s manipulation,
15:07   and unfortunately, it is propaganda.
15:10   At the very end, I had a look at what was left behind at the location following the event.
15:15   It looked like a garbage dump. On my way back, I stopped at the location for
15:21   the anti-Corona demonstration. There, it was completely clean. A police officer mentioned that
15:30   they even took their bottles with them.
15:34   Today, I actually wanted to report on the anti-Corona demonstration.
15:40   Where, by the way, I felt safe at this demonstration. Here are a few images.
15:45   My report on the Antifa has become too long. That’s why I will add a few impressions
15:53   From the other demonstration opposing Corona measures, following the Antifa story.
16:01   That way you can make up your own mind. Sign: Freedom of the press, instead of ARD + ZDF
16:04   Sign: My right to ALL information
16:07   What I saw here was extremely frustrating, especially the violence. A police officer said
16:13   they were used to the violence from Antifa people. So why don’t we see THAT on T.V.?
16:18   Why is it something new, even for me? Their propensity for violence.
16:22   Where is the ARD? Where is ZDF? Why isn’t it shown how
16:26   these allegedly peaceful protesters treat the police?
16:32   At times, their provocations toward the police were immense. Even I was afraid.
16:37   I didn’t have a helmet. Today the reaction of the police was very mild.
16:44   Orders were given to clear the area, but it wasn’t really enforced.
16:48   This is a huge contrast with other demonstrations that I witnessed.
16:53   For the anti-Corona protesters, the reaction from the police was more severe.
16:56   The social distancing rule wasn’t complied with at all.
16:59   A complete mockery of social distancing. At the other demonstration,
17:04   2 km in this direction on the July 17th St., participants were constantly reminded
17:10   to keep their distance by police. Here, it is pretty obvious that the government won’t
17:15   enforce the rules. Maybe from their standpoint that’s good, because it avoids further escalation.
17:23   I think that’s bitter, because it means that law and order can’t be enforced
17:27   by the police in the nation’s capital. The big question is whether this is done on purpose.
17:32   Why isn’t being reported? Why do we pay 800 million for TV tax, when no one from
17:38   the ARD or ZDF is here? Maybe they are invisible. I’d bet you won’t see a thing
17:47   about this immense violence on television tonight. Maybe I’m wrong. Their narrative is
17:56   that people showing up here are the good guys. The ones fighting fascism.
18:02   I’d better not say what all this reminds me of. Thank you for watching. Stay tuned and subscribe
18:10   to my channel. My website is www.reitschuster.de There you will find the latest developments.
18:15   I don’t receive any taxpayer money, but I think viewers need a counterbalance to the framing
18:22   that ARD and ZDF dish up. That’s why I’m happy for your support. www.reitschuster.de
18:27   That’s where you’ll find out how you can support me or contribute in a small way.
18:32   It’s David against Goliath. Together we are strong. There’s a crowd opposing the
18:36   opinion management journalism and that’s crowdfunding.
18:40   Take care, and greetings from Charlottenburg. Ciao. See you soon.
18:46   Yes, perhaps you can tell us briefly why you came here today?
18:52   Yes, well, up until last year I just observed politics and was never very active in politics.
19:03   The point came where I felt I had to become more active. The keyword is masks.
19:11   That, along with all the other restrictions that have occurred.
19:15   These restrictions caused me to become more active.
19:19   Honestly, I’m appalled by what the government is doing.
19:24   I’m equally appalled by what the synchronized mainstream media outlets produce.
19:29   I took the time, months, to inform myself over the internet, learning what other experts are saying,
19:32   such as Dr. Sucharit Bhakdi. There are several others. I looked into the medical aspect of it, and there are other opinions
19:35   which differ from Prof. Drosten’s and that of the Robert Koch Institiute (RKI). What I greatly miss from
19:38   the cadres of government and median is a public debate. I mean a visible public debate. I could imagine a television studio where
19:41   the government’s expert and the other experts meet and exchange arguments. This way the general populace
19:44   can see this and form their own opinions. The government has noticed that this is dividing people.
19:47   Of course they know it, but everything is being done to denounce those who think differently. You’re called a right-winger,
19:50   a conspiracy theorist, or one I particularly like is, an esoteric anti-vaxxer. —You don’t look like a right winger. —No, no.
19:53   I voted for the Green party for years. I’m a reputable person. So they simply denounce you,
19:56   and that results in driving a wedge into society.
 

5 thoughts on “A Tale of Two Protests

  1. German “media” is garbage for the most part, and only good for a handful of things, but it’s mostly about climate hysteria and whipping up pro-“refugee” sentiment.

    Congratulations to the Berlin police for showing up with actual riot gear and not dropping to their knees for the “protestors”.

  2. BTW if this doesn’t kill the lockdown I don’t know what will. Only the most abysmal lemmings could tolerate non-stop social distancing after seeing these huge demonstrations from Toronto to Tokyo.

    • I do not think there are protests in Tokyo ,the Japanese still believe in their country and culture .The west seems to be on a suicide drive to do away with itself.With the most progressive cities New York and L.A. leading the way to become third world cities by doing away with the police and not enforcing laws that protect the law abiding citizens from vandals and barbarism mobs that have free run of the streets “because their feelings are hurt”.

  3. The same lame slogans world wide “no justice no peace”(first used by New York Cities store front preacher Sharpton in the middle 1980s in Brooklyn boycotts and riots) a Soros project organized to put the economy of the west further into the toilet .What does a bad cop in America,s Midwest who killed a thug with excessive force have to do with Germany??

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