Thousands commemorated the murder of Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht 98 years ago on Sunday. Nostalgia became ideology.
Children stood at the roadside and sold red carnations Photo: DPA
Sunday was a fair in Berlin. Offered were ideologies and the revolution. At 10 a.m., a cacophony of speeches, workers’ songs and anti-capitalista shouts resounded at Frankfurter Tor. Stalinists, Leninists, Maoists and Trotskyists – even anarchists – are milling about. The 3,500 or so participants walk off to commemorate the assassination of Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht 98 years ago.
From one of the loudis it sounds: "We want to make today’s demo organized and try to march in rows of eight." Only the bloc of a militant youth group seriously adheres to this.
The next block belongs to "Rebell," the youth wing of the Marxist-Leninist Party of Germany (MLPD). Two men in their late twenties are holding a flag on which, in addition to Marx, Engels and Lenin, Stalin and Mao are also depicted. The left of the two flag bearers defends the choice of motif: "When it comes to Stalin, there’s a lot of lying and distortion. For every dead person who may have died of a toothache, it is claimed that Stalin killed him." When he talks about socialism, the standard-bearer dreams of entire continents centrally administered.
The Internationalist List of the MLPD is particularly active in addressing people at the memorial demonstration. It collects signatures for the candidacy of its party in the Bundestag elections and offers "freshly printed" party programs. One of their flags shows five stylized hands interlocking: one white, one black, one yellow, one brown and one red. I guess that’s supposed to stand for internationalism.
Next to it, a punkish-looking young man waves an anarchist flag and shouts, "Ole, ole, ole – communism, communism, communism." Postmodern arbitrariness at the Luxemburg-Liebknecht demonstration.
The demonstration is nearing its end – the Friedrichsfelde cemetery. Everyone is talking about two arrests – because of flags showing the face of PKK leader Abdullah ocalan. The police could only confirm Sunday afternoon that there were measures restricting freedom.
At the memorial stand next to stand. There are books, sausages, pea soup
In front of the memorial of the socialists, where Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht are buried, there is stand next to stand. There are books, sausages and pea soup. Left-wing newspapers are distributed. A few children take advantage of the opportunity and sell carnations. At one of the stands, you can buy T-shirts – with Lenin’s face on them or the words: "Mega bitch.
At the memorial itself, the mood is reverent. Mozart’s Requiem can be heard from the many loudspeakers. The Youth Resistance group briefly disrupts the mood, chanting, "All for the people, class and party. Long live Stalin!" They only briefly get the attention of their comrades. Then it becomes quiet again and the last notes of the Requiem sound from the loudspeakers: "Amen".