Thousands line Berlin river to cheer Queen

Valentine Low, Berlin

he queen visited Angela Merkel, the chancellor, at her offices Theo Schneider / Demotix
The queen visited Angela Merkel, the chancellor, at her offices Theo Schneider / Demotix

Thousands of people lined the banks of the Spree in Berlin today to watch the Queen take a river trip through the centre of the German capital.

On the first full day of her state visit, she travelled in an open pleasure cruiser with the Duke of Edinburgh, accompanied by President Gauck and his partner Daniela Schadt.

Onlookers cheered from the banks and waved union flags, while hundreds of schoolchildren screamed from a bridge as the Queen passed below. (more…)

Mehrheit der Deutschen will keinen Brexit

Theo Schneider /Demotix/Press Association Images
Theo Schneider /Demotix/Press Association Images

Ein Ausscheiden der Briten wäre nach Ansicht vieler Deutscher schlecht für alle Beteiligten. Eine Mehrheit plädiert daher für Verhandlungen.
Matthias Schmidt

Nach der Wahl ist vor dem Referendum. David Cameron hat seine zweite Amtszeit als britischer Premierminister angetreten. Eines seiner Wahlversprechen: Bis 2017 wird es auf der Insel eine Volksabstimmung darüber geben, ob das Vereinigte Königreich in der EU bleibt oder ob es zu einem „Brexit“ kommt. Sogar der Wortlaut der Frage, auf die dann mit „Ja“ oder „Nein“ geantwortet werden kann, ist schon formuliert.

Eine Mehrheit der Deutschen würde es allerdings nicht gerne sehen, wenn die Briten die EU verlassen. Das ist das Ergebnis einer aktuellen YouGov-Umfrage. Dabei sähe es gut die Hälfte der Befragten (58 Prozent) gern, wenn das Vereinigte Königreich in der EU bleibt. Nur 18 Prozent würden einen Brexit bevorzugen, jeder Vierte (23 Prozent) machte keine Angabe. (more…)

Riding the caliphate interstate with Jeff Steinberg

An interview on the origins of Islamic State and its relationship with regional and global powers.
Haneul Na’avi

In order to explore the history of the Islamic State in its relationship to Saudia Arabia and Turkey, Haneul Na‘avi consulted Jeffrey Steinberg, senior editor and counterintelligence director of the Executive Intelligence Review. Steinberg has 40 years of experience working with the LarouchePAC, and is a member of and active contributor to the Schiller Institute in Wiesbaden, Germany. Click here to listen to the full interview.

Haneul Na’avi: Can you give us a brief history of the Islamic State? How did they rise to power after the [2003] US-NATO invasion of Iraq?

Jeffrey Steinberg: You have to go back to when Zbigniew Brzezinski was the National Security Advisor to Jimmy Carter, and convinced the president to sign a secret authorisation to begin covert operations in Afghanistan, six months before the Soviets arrived, around Christmastime of 1979.

Known as the Bernard-Lewis Plan, it involved promoting Islamic fundamentalism all across the southern tier of the Soviet Union. When the Soviets finally moved in, things became concentrated in building up a radical Islamic terrorist apparatus, sponsored by the US, British, Saudis, French, and Israelis.

Brzezinski. Demotix/Theo Schneider. All rights reserved.
Brzezinski. Demotix/Theo Schneider. All rights reserved.

The whole idea was to play Islamic fundamentalism against the ‘godless Soviet Union’, but the problem this created was the emergence of groups such as al-Qaeda. Osama bin Laden himself went to Peshawar in northwest Pakistan, near the Afghanistan border, as part of this Anglo-American/Saudi project to create a terrorist organisation against the Soviet presence in Afghanistan. That effort succeeded somewhat, but the consequences of that was the birth of an international Jihadi terrorist apparatus that is haunting the world today. (more…)

Serbia’s Prime Minister Drags Investigative Journalists Through the Mud Over Corruption Article


Serbia’s PM Aleksandar Vučić giving a speech at a panel discussion in Berlin with German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, where both spoke about the “Restart to Brussels – Serbia on the path to the EU”, with members of the Serbian cabinet and German Economics. Photo by Theo Schneider, copyright Demotix, June 30, 2014.

Social networks in Serbia have been buzzing since early January when the country’s Prime Minister Aleksandar Vučić took another public swing at already pressured investigative journalists in the country.

At a press conference on January 9, when asked about a recently published investigative piece indicating possible corruption and irregularities in a large government-funded project, Vučić called the investigative journalists “liars” and accused European Union officials of paying select journalists in Serbia to slander the Serbian government. (more…)

Welcome to the parallel universe: Richard Falk’s interview with PM Davutoglu

Through his references to things that are mundane, Erdogan speaks to people’s pockets. And through his references to God and the ancestors, he speaks to people’s hearts.
OGUZ ALYANAK

This article is a response to a conversation between Richard Falk and Turkey’s Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, which took place on 28th September–see part 1, part 2, part 3 and part 4. There was much internal debate at openDemocracy about whether or not to publish the series. Read the Editor in Chief’s reasons for doing so here, along with the many other responses to Davutoğlu published in this series, listed to the right under ‚Related Articles‘.

Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan participates with the Turkish Foreign Minister Davutoglu in opening ceremony of the new Turkish Embassy in Berlin. Theo Schneider/Demotix. All rights reserved.
Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan participates with the Turkish Foreign Minister Davutoglu in opening ceremony of the new Turkish Embassy in Berlin. Theo Schneider/Demotix. All rights reserved.

If you find yourself wondering which Turkey the Prime Minister Davutoğlu speaks of in this interview, let me assure you that you are not alone. It certainly is not the Turkey that I think of when I remind myself of the Roboski massacre, the Reyhanlı bombings, the Gezi uprising or the corruption probe in 2013. Neither is it the Turkey that remained a spectator to the killing of Kurds by ISIS in the border town of Kobane, nor the country where journalists and researchers constantly face the fear of being linked to a terrorist organization or risking detention as they express their criticism of the government. (more…)

Gewonnen – bis auf Weiteres

Gebiert der Liberalismus seine ideologischen Gegner selbst?
von Abram N. Shulsky

Im gleichen Maße, in dem sich die liberale Demokratie weltweit durchsetzt, wird sie durch wechselnde Gegenbewegungen herausgefordert. Auf Nationalismus folgten Faschismus und Kommunismus, auf das vermeintliche „Ende der Geschichte“ der Islamismus. Was ist es, das dem Liberalismus immer neue Widersacher beschert?

Theo Schneider/Demotix/Corbis
Theo Schneider/Demotix/Corbis

Es ist mittlerweile 25 Jahre her, dass der Zusammenbruch des Kommunismus einen Diskurs wiederbelebt hat, der 80 Jahre lang in Vergessenheit geraten war: dass nämlich die Menschheit in ihrer Geschichte grundsätzlich voranschreitet, dass die liberale Demokratie Frieden und Wohlstand fördert und dass sie folglich dazu bestimmt ist, weltweit zu triumphieren.

Bücher wie Francis Fukuyamas „The End of History“ oder Max Singers und Aaron Wildavskys „The Real World Order: Zones of Peace, Zones of Turmoil“ trugen entscheidend dazu bei, diese optimistische Erwartungshaltung neu zu beleben, die charakteristisch war für viele Denker des 19. Jahrhunderts – bis sie aber spätestens in den Schützengräben des Ersten Weltkriegs für immer verschüttet zu sein schien. Das letzte Hallelujah auf den Optimismus des 19. Jahrhunderts hatte nur wenige Jahre vor dem Ersten Weltkrieg Norman Angell in seinem Buch „The Great Illusion“ gesungen. Für Angell bestand die große Illusion in der Idee, dass ein Staat seine militärische Macht doch tatsächlich einsetzen könne, um seine ökonomischen und sonstigen Interessen durchzusetzen. Angesichts einer „globalisierten“ Ökonomie aber, behauptete Angell, sei Krieg ein Anachronismus und militärische Macht entsprechend irrelevant für das Wohlergehen einer Gesellschaft. (more…)

I dag skyller minnene over Normandies strender

70 år etter den allierte invasjonen av Normandie i Frankrike kan du fremdeles se rørende møter mellom sivile og krigs­veteraner.
Arild Berg Karlsen

Et amerikansk flagg vaier over over et monument over den allierte invasjonen i Normandie for 70 år siden i Colleville-sur-mer.<br />
FOTO: Theo Schneider, Demotix
Et amerikansk flagg vaier over over et monument over den allierte invasjonen i Normandie for 70 år siden i Colleville-sur-mer.
FOTO: Theo Schneider, Demotix

En fransk kvinne i 40-årene krysser den smale gaten og ser den gamle, britiske krigsveteranen rett inn i øynene. Hun griper hans høyre hånd med begge sine og sier: «Thank you. Thank you!» Så går hun videre.

Dette lille, men sterke møtet fant sted i travle Bayeux, Normandie i Frankrike denne uken.

Kvinnen, som åpenbart er født mange år etter krigen, ville takke den rundt 90 år gamle britiske mannen for den innsatsen han hadde gjort for at hun kunne få vokse opp i et fritt Frankrike. (more…)

US private sector job creation jumps; Eurozone jobless at record high – as it happened

4.21pm GMT Meanwhile in Berlin…..

US Secretary of the Treasury, Jacob Lew and German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schauble attending a press conference in Berlin. Photograph: Theo Schneider/Demotix/Corbis
US Secretary of the Treasury, Jacob Lew and German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schauble attending a press conference in Berlin. Photograph: Theo Schneider/Demotix/Corbis

Missed this earlier --the US Treasury secretary has renewed the pressure on Germany to do more to help its neighbours by stimulating its domestic economy.

On a visit to Europe, Jack Lew told a press conference in Berlin that Washington believes more internal demand within Germany would be good news for the whole region.

Lew told a press conference, following a meeting with German finance minister Wolfgang Schauble, that:

    We continue to believe that policies that would promote more domestic investment and demand would be good for the German economy and the global economy.

Schauble, though, denied that Germany’s export strength is a threat. Indeed, we should be more grateful for it, he suggests:

    „The eurozone as a whole has a very small surplus …. and without the German surplus toward third countries, the eurozone would have no surplus at all, but a deficit.

    The American deficit won‘t be improved by a European one being added to it.“

Ouch…

Photograph: Theo Schneider/Demotix/Corbis
Photograph: Theo Schneider/Demotix/Corbis

Quelle: The Guardian (http://www.theguardian.com/business/2014/jan/08/sainsburys-claims-best-christmas-ever-as-mothercare-issues-profits-warning-business-live#block-52cd6c21e4b07f8c2b4a049a)

13 tips on building a coalition to tackle climate change

How do you foster effective cross-sectoral cooperation to end climate change? Our expert panel suggests you might want to start by watching your language
Holly Young, Guardian Professional, Tuesday 19 November 2013 16.37 GMT

As Marcin Korolec, president of the COP during COP 19 in Warsaw gives a speech, our panel question the 'right' type of leadership for a climate change coalition. Photograph: Theo Schneider/Demotix/Corbis
As Marcin Korolec, president of the COP during COP 19 in Warsaw gives a speech, our panel question the ‚right‘ type of leadership for a climate change coalition. Photograph: Theo Schneider/Demotix/Corbis

Terry Townshend, deputy secretary general: policy, The Global Legislators Organisation (Globe International), Beijing, China. @terrytownshend
If you want to get the political establishment on board, watch your language: I think the biggest obstacle to effective climate action has been political, largely driven by ideology and the power of rich corporations over politicians. Political campaign finance reform is absolutely necessary but, until that happens, climate change objectives need to be expressed in language that is not politically divisive. Speak in terms of energy security, risk, air pollution, health and not climate change, green, or saving the planet, which some parts of the political establishment are allergic to. (more…)

Brüh im Glanze

Dicker Klops: Die Ober-Vertriebene Erika Steinbach verklagt die Europäische Union.

Quelle: taz print vom 13.11.2013 (Text auf taz.de)

Kommentar: Her er de største klimaudfordringer til COP19

Mattias Söderberg, Folkekirkens Nødhjælp | 11. november 2013
Mandag starter et nyt klimatopmøde, COP19, i Warsawa. Mattias Söderberg fra Folkekirkens Nødhjælp skriver løbende debatindlæg fra mødet

Spørgsmålet om de manglende klimapenge bliver et af de vigtige temaer i de kommende to ugers forhandlinger ved klimatopmødet i Warszawa. foto: Theo Schneider / Demotix/Scanpix Denmark
Spørgsmålet om de manglende klimapenge bliver et af de vigtige temaer i de kommende to ugers forhandlinger ved klimatopmødet i Warszawa. foto: Theo Schneider / Demotix/Scanpix Denmark

Hvor er pengene? Sådan spørger mange af de fattigste lande, som kæmper med effekterne af klimaforandringerne. Effekter, som de ikke selv bærer skylden for, men som truer deres indbyggere igennem tørke, oversvømmelser og vilde storme. De rige lande har erkendt, at de er en del af problemet, og de fattigste lande spørger derfor med rette, hvornår de vil få kompensation. (more…)

NSA-skandale belaster Merkel

Nye oplysninger sår tvivl om Angela Merkels påstande om, at hun ikke kendte til NSA’s overvågning af europæiske borgere. Spørgsmålet kan få indflydelse på den tyske valgkamp
Af Troels Heeger

Angela Merkel lytter til præsident Obamas tale i Berlin 19. juni. Kansleren forholdt sig afventende, efter det blev afsløret, at den amerikanske efterretningstjeneste NSA også overvåger tyske statsborgere. Nu skriver avisen Bild, at den tyske efterretningstjeneste har kendt til overvågningen i årevis. Foto: Theo Schneider.
Angela Merkel lytter til præsident Obamas tale i Berlin 19. juni. Kansleren forholdt sig afventende, efter det blev afsløret, at den amerikanske efterretningstjeneste NSA også overvåger tyske statsborgere. Nu skriver avisen Bild, at den tyske efterretningstjeneste har kendt til overvågningen i årevis. Foto: Theo Schneider.

Hidtil har den tyske regering bekendtgjort, at man ikke har haft kendskab til omfanget af den amerikanske efterretningstjeneste NSA’s overvågning af tyske borgere. I torsdags bedyrede kansler Angela Merkel i et interview med avisen Zeit, at hun først fik kendskab til det amerikanske spionprogram PRISM gennem medierne.

Men en række informationer antyder, at det forholder sig anderledes.

Mandag kom det frem, at den tyske efterretningstjeneste BND har modtaget data fra den amerikanske efterretningstjeneste, blandt andet i forbindelse med gidseltagninger af tyske statsborgere i Yemen. Eftersom BND rettede direkte henvendelse til NSA, tyder meget på, at de tyske myndigheder har haft kendskab til den amerikanske overvågning af tysk telekommunikation. Derudover har ugemagasinet Spiegel tidligere på måneden afsløret, at NSA og den tyske efterretningstjeneste arbejder sammen i højere grad end tidligere antaget. Blandt andet leverer NSA ifølge afhopperen Edward Snowden analyseredskaber til de tyske kolleger med henblik på overvågning og logning af udenlandske data, der løber gennem tyske internetkabler. Dermed synes det usandsynligt, at tyske myndigheder og toppolitikere ikke har været bekendt med dele af det amerikanske spionageprogram. (more…)

Obama calls for nuclear weapons cull

Foto: Theo Schneider / Demotix

Obama besucht Berlin – die schönsten Bilder

Theo Schneider/ Demotix. Sicherheitspersonal überall: Sogar im Kofferraum dieses Begleitfahrzeugs in der Autokolonne des Präsidenten verbarg sich ein Agent des Secret Service. Das Zentrum Berlins dürfte an diesem Mittwoch zu einem der bestgesicherten Orte der Welt gezählt haben. Sehr zum Leidwesen vieler Berliner: Straßensperren und Bahnausfälle machten das Fortkommen in der Stadt mühsam.

Quelle: Spiegel Online (http://www.spiegel.de/fotostrecke/obama-besucht-berlin-die-schoensten-bilder-fotostrecke-98204-15.html)

Ready to be Berliners too! Michelle and the girls ditch casual clothes as Obamas land in Germany for President’s landmark speech

  • President arrives in Berlin tonight in preparation for speech on Wednesday
  • Comes almost exactly 50 years since JFK gave ‚Ich bin ein Berliner‘ speech
  • Obama visited Germany in 2008 and drew crowd of 200,000 supporters… but protesters were out at Checkpoint Charlie on Tuesday in outrage over the NSA surveillance programs

  • By Hugo Gye and Louise Boyle

    The Obamas touched down in Berlin on Tuesday evening for a whirlwind 24-hour visit to Germany, the culmination of which will be the President’s speech at the Brandenburg Gate.

    The First Lady had made a quick change into a sleek black trouser-and-cardigan combo with studded belt while daughters Malia and Sasha were all smiles in short dresses and neon accessories.

    The President left the plane holding his youngest daughter Sasha’s hand, waving to the crowds gathered at Tegel Airport. Michelle followed with eldest daughter Malia who had styled her white lace dress with biker boots.

    Mr Obama’s speech today will inevitably be compared with JFK’s 1963 address to the German capital in which he declared ‚Ich bin ein Berliner‘ in solidarity with residents of West Berlin at the height of the Cold War.

    During the brief trip, the President will hold meetings with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other government officials but is likely to face some tough questions over his handling of the NSA surveillance scandal.

    Star quality: Michelle Obama looked glamorous as she has handed a bunch of flowers on arrival in Berlin
    Star quality: Michelle Obama looked glamorous as she has handed a bunch of flowers on arrival in Berlin

    Quelle: Daily Mail (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2343771/Ich-bin-ein-Berliner-Obama-set-speech-German-capital-50-years-JFKs-legendary-address.html)

    How to build a foreign policy for introvert Europe?

    The euro crisis has resulted in an even more introvert Europe, and everything has yet to be done to build a European foreign policy. So where should we start?
    SPYROS ECONOMIDES

    German foreign and defence ministers meet French counterparts on Mali. Demotix/Theo Schneider. All rights reserved.
    German foreign and defence ministers meet French counterparts on Mali. Demotix/Theo Schneider. All rights reserved.

    The eurozone crisis has marginalised the attention devoted to the EU’s foreign policy capacity. As member states argue over the merit of financial stability and rescue mechanisms to bail out debtor sovereigns, and debate the need for fiscal integration and reform of the EMU, the EU’s global impact weakens. It does so for two reasons.

    The first is obvious: a vulnerable single currency weakens the competitiveness of the single market; a less competitive single market weakens the foreign policy of a polity which is dependent – to a great extent – on its commercial prowess to be able to influence. The second is less obvious but equally harmful to EU interests: the severity of the internal financial crisis, and its inescapable political and social consequences, has resulted in a heavy dose of ‘Euro-introspection’. Europe is turning away from the world as it is consumed with its internal arrangements and future prospects for European integration. (more…)

    One year later, Pussy Riot members still in Russian jails

    150 people gather in Berlin Prenzlauer Berg for a
    150 people gather in Berlin Prenzlauer Berg for a „Free Pussy Riot“ protest video in August 2012. Demotix/Theo Schneider

    (Human Rights Watch/IFEX) – Russian authorities should immediately and unconditionally free the two members of the feminist punk group Pussy Riot who remain behind bars, Human Rights Watch said today.

    The two women, Nadia Tolokonnikova and Maria Alyokhina, have been in detention since their arrest nearly one year ago, on March 2, 2012. They were sentenced in August to two years in prison for “hate-motivated hooliganism” based on a political stunt in the area near the altar of Moscow’s Christ the Savior Cathedral.

    “Every day these women have been in prison has been an injustice,” said Rachel Denber, deputy Europe and Central Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “The women of Pussy Riot should never have been charged with a hate crime.”

    A Moscow court found Tolokonnikova, Alyokhina, and Ekaterina Samutsevich, guilty on charges of hooliganism committed by a group of persons motivated by religious hatred, under article 213, part 2 of Russia’s criminal code. In October, the Moscow City Court released Samutsevich on parole because she was not among the band members who actually entered the area in front of the altar. (more…)

    Russian Duma passes draft law banning ‚homosexual propaganda‘

    Activists in Berlin, Germany, show their opposition to a bill proposing a ban on 'homosexual propaganda' in Russia. Theo Schneider/Demotix<br />
    Activists in Berlin, Germany, show their opposition to a bill proposing a ban on ‚homosexual propaganda‘ in Russia. Theo Schneider/Demotix

    (Human Rights Watch/IFEX) – 27 January 2013 – Vicious attacks on gay rights protesters in Russia in recent days underscores the need for the Russian Duma to reject a draft law on “propaganda for homosexuality.“ Russian authorities should thoroughly investigate the violence and new threats and hold accountable those responsible.

    On January 25, 2013, the Duma, the lower chamber of parliament, voted in the first reading in favor of draft provisions that would impose fines on individuals, government officials, and organizations that engage in “promoting” homosexuality to anyone under 18.

    “The draft law contributes to an atmosphere that makes violence against LGBT protesters seem acceptable,” said Anna Kirey, a researcher with the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) program at Human Rights Watch. “If adopted, the bill would violate the free expression rights of all Russians and discriminate against and further stigmatize Russia’s LGBT community.” (more…)

    Eurozone crisis live: Vatican backs Monti; Schäuble suggests worst is over

    Schäuble: the worst is behind us

    German finance minister Wolfgang Schäuble, earlier this month Photograph: Theo Schneider/Demotix/Corbis
    German finance minister Wolfgang Schäuble, earlier this month Photograph: Theo Schneider/Demotix/Corbis

    Germany’s finance minister has claimed that Europe has survived the darkest days of the financial crisis, in an upbeat assessment of the situation as 2013 approaches.

    Wolfgang Schäuble told Bild, in an interview published this afternoon, that countries such as Greece and France have realised that they must implement tough reforms. (more…)

    Spectacol la Berlin inspirat de procesul Pussy Riot

    La Berlin a avut loc premiera unui spectacol bazat pe procesul celor trei rusoaice din trupa punk Pussy Riot, condamnate la câte doi ani de închisoare, după ce, în luna februarie, au ocupat altarul Catedralei Hristos Mântuitorul din Moscova şi au invocat-o, pe ritmuri punk, pe Fecioara Maria, rugând-o să îl alunge pe Putin de la putere.

    Piesa, pusă în scenă la sediul Fundaţiei Heinrich Bell, se numeşte „Pussy Right“ şi i-a avut în prim-plan pe actorii Teatrului berlinez „Maxim Gorki“ Anna Muller, Christine Koenig, Regina Zimmermann şi Ulrich Matthes. Intrarea la spectacol a fost liberă, iar piesa a fost transmisă şi online, pe site-ul Fundaţiei Heinrich Bell. În textul piesei, în afară de momente din sala de judecată de la Moscova, au fost folosite şi extrase din „Antigona“ lui Sofocle. Procesul trupei punk Pussy Riot a fost intens mediatizat, inclusiv în afara Rusiei, personalităţi din mediile cultural, politic şi social exprimându-şi susţinerea faţă de cele trei fete condamnate la închisoare.

    Quelle: Timpul (http://www.timpul.md/articol/spectacol-la-berlin-inspirat-de-procesul-pussy-riot-36994.html)

    Free Pussy Riot protests around the world

    Theo Schneider/Demotix.com
    A woman wearing a pink balaklava raise her fist during a performance to a free pussy riot protest song in front of the Russian Embassy in Berlin, Germany.
    Theo Schneider/Demotix.com

    Quelle: New York Post (http://www.nypost.com/p/news/international/free_pussy_riot_protests_Jp7JnqSDbbsLp2fTqE8dYJ?photo_num=4)