On Thursday, November 4, on the occasion of the tenth year of the unmasking of the neo-Nazi terrorist group National Socialist Underground (NSU), thousands of anti-fascists marched in Berlin to protest the spike in right-wing assaults in the country and the German state’s inaction in such crimes. The call for the mobilization was given by several groups, including DEMOB, ISD-Berlin, AZE, and the Berlin Committee of the Union of Persecutees of the Nazi Regime (VVN-BdA), among others. The neo-Nazi underground network of NSU, uncovered in November 2011, was found to be involved in several murders (around 10 people, mostly from migrant backgrounds), bombings and robberies.
Many of the victims of the NSU were immigrants of Turkish, Kurdish and Greek origin. There are strong allegations of collusion between the police and intelligence officrs and the NSU. Certain threatening emails received by notable rights activists and left-wing politicians from the NSU were traced back to a police computer in Frankfurt. A biased media was also found complicit in concealing the involvement of the neo-Nazi group in these crimes. However, after widespread protests and an international outcry, the NSU murder trial began on May 6, 2013, and on July 11, 2018, the Munich Higher Regional Court found five neo-Nazis guilty.
Read: Special police unit in Frankfurt disbanded over links to far-right
Prior to the mobilization on Thursday, the organizers of the protest stated, “10 years ago, on 04.11.2011, the core trio of the NSU became known to the public. For 10 years now, we have had the certainty that Enver Şimşek, Abdurrahim Özüdoğru, Süleyman Taşköprü, Habil Kılıç, Mehmet Turgut, İsmail Yaşar, Theodoros Boulgarides, Mehmet Kubaşık and Halit Yozgat fell victim to the murderous racism of the NSU. The policewoman Michèle Kiesewetter was also killed by the right-wing terrorists.”
“A broad network of supporters made the murders of the NSU possible, whose members can still act largely untraced. Even though after the end of the trial in 2018 and the recent confirmation of the judgments by the Federal Court of Justice, the legal processing of the NSU complex is declared complete, it is clear that we are still a long way from a “complete clarification” of the NSU complex,” the organizers added.
The Berlin committee of Die Linke (The Left) stated that “with the help of a supporter network throughout Germany, NSU murdered people and many of the perpetrators have not been persecuted. The government tie-in with those crimes has not been clarified either. The victims and their families didn’t get justice. The left and the victims of racism who fight against it continue to receive death threats.”
Torben Müller from the Socialist German Workers Youth (SDAJ) told Peoples Dispatch that “We as the communist youth in Germany are fighting against fascism. Till this day, the German state is unable to give us the answers who the NSU really was, but we know it wasn’t only the three known people. The NSU was supported by people of the far right and also by the state. It’s an open secret that the far right groups that are founded in the 1990s only exist by the money of the state. There is no week in Germany without the discovery of a new fascist group in state organizations, police or army.”
“We as the communist youth understand that fascism is a part of the capitalist state…We are fighting against capitalism and fascism. They will not win!”, added Torben Mullen.