background information:

On the 20th of June 1998 antifascists tried to prevent a busjourney of nazis to a central solstice ceremony of the "German National Union" (DVU- a german Nazi- Party). The antifas wanted to prevent the departure of their bus by a blocking it and distributing leaflets. The chartered bus came from Bremerhaven (60km from Bremen)- at the central staion in Bremen more fascist were about to join their "comrades". Shortly after the bus arrived in Bremen, antifascists tried to put the blockade into action. In this moment an accident took place, when one of the bustires exploded. The enormous power of the explosion and flying pieces of the tire injured one person heavily. From this moment on, the situation ran out of control. Gapers were gathering and confusion reigned because nobody knew what the explosion had been about.
After about 15 minutes the arriving police sorted out indiscriminately persons out of the mass of the bystanders and imprisoned them. The arrests were totally arbitrary- even in the neighbour districts and the trams (streetcars) people got picked up, up to one hour after the incident. In that way 21 persons in total got arrested. All of them were accused of breach of public peace.
In october 2000 the first trials took place. In the first place 3 juveniles were on trial, supported by lots of friends who came to watch the process and show their solidarity.
Just in the beginning their lawyers made clear that the immense expense of the investigationshad been out of all relation to any expected result. The judge and the public prosecutor had no choice as well- facing the lack of evidence they agreed to the dismissal of the case at the public expense. Surely the political of that time played an important role: During the silly season the media discovered the news value of the fascist movement in Germany and so did the politicians. After the years of criminalization of antifascist activism and denial of the wide- spread xenophobia and rascism, suddenly even the cancellor demanded an "upstand of the respectables" against nazis. The judge in the case also underlined the nessecity of a "democratic consense against the extreme right".
This "state antifascism" is accompanied by a reality which is determined by special laws against refugees in Germany (e.g. the prohibition of working or choosing freely the place to live, the denial of monetary social welfare,.....) and the rascist politics of deportations.
At least this attempt to criminalize antifascist action failed! As it seems, the other 12 trials at the Bremen court against the adults will be dismissed as well. The accused will have to pay from 300,- to 2400,- DM (150- 1200 euro)- this means that monetary support is necessary!

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