Daily Israel Report

Watch: German Hooligans Desecrate Berlin Holocaust Memorial

Arutz Sheva has obtained shocking footage of hooligans partying and urinating on the Holocaust Memorial on New Year’s Eve.
By Colin Cortbus
First Publish: 1/5/2014, 9:05 PM

Urinating on the memorial
Urinating on the memorial
Screenshot

Arutz Sheva has obtained shocking footage of a gang of hooligans partying and urinating on the world-famous Holocaust Memorial in central Berlin on New Year’s Eve during the open air New Year’s Eve party at the Brandenburg Gate. 

The following report and commentary were written by Colin Cortbus exclusively for Arutz Sheva. He also took the documentary footage embedded below.

Berlin’s annual open air New Year’s Eve party is one of the largest in the world, drawing in excess of one million people. But while Berlin City Police fence off large parts of the parks surrounding the huge festival area on the Avenue of the 17 of July - the street leading up to the Brandenburg Gate - no effort appears to have been made by officials to close off, or otherwise protect, the Holocaust Memorial.

The memorial lies in close proximity to the Brandenburg Gate and directly at the side of a road that is one of the main entry and exit pathways into the festival.

The Holocaust memorial, criticized by some for its inadequacy, consists of thousands of rectangular gray concrete monoliths and covers a ground area not much smaller than Trafalgar square in London. Despite an abundance of police officers on the site, no officers appeared to be patrolling the memorial specifically. Even the two security officers who were patrolling close to the memorial proved incapable of preventing even the most basic violations as a result of the memorial's vast size.

As a result, the memorial was soon overrun by a group of hooligans, many of them drunk, and individuals who were, in appearance, not dissimilar to far-right extremists. Many of them climbed onto the monoliths - which represent the tombs of the murdered Jews of Europe - and jumped between them. In a shocking display, the thugs climbing those monoliths walked on, and soiled, the symbolic grave of the millions of Jewish people which many of their own forefathers murdered.

 

Numerous revelers lit rockets and firecrackers in the memorial, or posed for photos on the monoliths, totally unconcerned about the character of the locality as a memorial to the most tragic and brutal events in European history. One man was observed climbing one of the larger monoliths of the memorial and then demonstratively urinating in full public view from his exposed position.

As our video documents, numerous other drunk revellers, male and female alike, also urinated on the memorial, making absolutely no effort to hide from the public gaze, and carrying out the act right on monoliths in close proximity to the street. A hooligan also unsuccessfully attempted to grab the camera from our cameraman.

One particularly drunk reveller passed out on top of the monoliths. Empty alcohol bottles and rubbish littered the memorial.

Despite the clearly visible activities of such persons, the police appear to have taken no action to arrest or stop any of the hooligans and drunks. This comes despite the fact that these activities are clearly and explicitly illegal. Section 168, subsection 2 of the German Criminal Code states that anyone who “commits insulting nuisance” (beschimpfenden Unfug) at a “public memorial to the dead” (öffentliche Totengedenkstätte) may be punished with a fine or imprisonment of up to 3 years.

Inadequate security and a lack of the protection for the memorial have previously been the subject of scandal when one of Germany’s largest tabloids, the Bild Zeitung, asked in 2008 whether memorial bosses had deliberately concealed evidence that the memorial has being used as a public toilet by tourists and passers-by.

Early last year, further controversy erupted when the "pro-tolerance" campaign group “Openminded Germany” approvingly published a photo a Muslim woman posing with a machine-gun at the memorial. After an outcry on right-wing blogs, the group was forced into an apology.