Groups demand halt of Berlin anti-Israel march

Norwegian paper slams ‘Ship to Gaza’ efforts to break blockade, over Islamist march planners who declared death to the Jews.

Ayatollah Khomeini's mausoleum 390 (photo credit: Reuters)
Ayatollah Khomeini's mausoleum 390
(photo credit: Reuters)
BERLIN – The daily (B.Z.) Berliner Zeitung's‘s popular columnist Gunnar Schupelius has called on the Berlin authorities to ban a pro-Iranian regime demonstration slated for Saturday, because the Islamists who planned the march have declared death to the Jews and the destruction of the State of Israel. Pro-Israel and anti-Iran regime groups issued a call to oppose the al-Quds Day protest.
Schupelius wrote that the when the founder of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, established al-Quds Day in 1979 he “urged Islamists across the globe to conquer Jerusalem and destroy Israel.”
Schupelius said the “hate demo” should not be covered by freedom of speech because it incites hatred – prohibited under German law.
Germany’s hate laws bar incitement against minority groups, including German Jews, but are infrequently enforced against expressions of modern anti-Semitism.
The al-Quds demonstration has become an annual event in Berlin since 1996 and merges thousands of radical Islamists, pockets of neo-Nazis and extreme Leftists into an anti- Israel march through the center of Berlin’s main shopping district.
The columnist complained about societal indifference in Berlin toward the call to destroy Israel. “I cannot understand the indifference with which we allow hate” and that is why, he wrote, he had penned his column 10 days in advance of the al-Quds day protest.
Schupelius noted that had right-wing radicals been the force behind the demonstration, the authorities would long since have banned it.
“Instead we see Iranians, Turks and Arabs,” he said.
The columnist added that the hate preachers from al-Quds target not only Jews, but also apostate Muslims. He cited the case of Iranian rapper Shahin Najafi who is in hiding in Germany because the Mullahs have issued a fatwa (religious order) for his assassination.
A coalition of pro-Israel and anti-Khomeini system activists and groups are slated to counter-demonstrate on Saturday.
The various groups have organized around the message: “No al-Quds day: Against anti-Semitism, anti-Zionism and homophobia! Solidarity with the Iranian democracy movement.”
Some of the groups included in the counter-demonstration are the Jewish Forum for Democracy and Against anti- Semitism, the Green Party of Iran, the German-Israel Friendship Society in Berlin/Potsdam, the Pro-Israel-Initiative “neveragain” and AVIVA Berlin, a popular Jewish feminist website.
Meanwhile, the Norwegian daily Dagbladet on Sunday slammed Norwegian peace activists who plan to participate in a “Ship to Gaza” action to break Israel’s naval blockade of the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip.
In the Dagbladet editorial, the paper asked in connection with Syria, “Where are the Norwegian activists now? Why do no Norwegian health workers want to do an effort in parts of Syria controlled by the insurgents?” A translation of the article first appeared on the pro-Israel media watchdog website Tundra Tabloids. Dagbladet added, “But on the whole we can probably just conclude that this is an internal Arab conflict, where one cannot bash Israel. Thus Israeli authorities have a point when they criticize the world for neglecting the Syrian population.
And we will ignore then, since there are political and not humanitarian reasons for the Israeli criticism.”
In an email to The Jerusalem Post on Monday, Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld, a leading Israeli authority on Norwegian anti-Semitism, wrote, “The Dagbladet article exposes that European multiculturalism is partly characterized by looking away as much as possible from crimes committed by Muslims in the Muslim world.
Many Western progressives are also humanitarian racists.
That means that non-Western criminals should not be held responsible for their deeds.
Thus there is also little interest in their victims. During [2006’s Operation] Cast Lead Norwegian government sources paid for the trip of two extreme leftist Dr. Mads Gilbert and Eric Fosse to Gaza.
Though they became vile Hamas propagandists, Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg called them up saying that the whole of Norway stood behind them. There is no such mileage in the many ‘Arabs murder Arabs’ realities.”
Gilbert did not return multiple Post emails and telephone calls seeking a comment.