Silvio Meier demonstrations in Berlin
Twenty-seven-year-old Silvio Meier was murdered on November 21, 1992, by neo-Nazis at the U-Bhf Samariterstraße, a train station in Berlin-Friedrichshain, a district in former east Berlin. From London’s Daily Mail, November 27, 1992, this was one of over 1,800 racist attacks in Germany that year. From the article, “according to Interior Ministry figures, 1,483 of these were Right-wing inspired.” Also from the article:
“NOVEMBER 21, Berlin: Silvio Meier, aged 27.
A SQUATTER with Left-wing views, Mr Meier was stabbed in a Tube train in the East Berlin suburb of Friedrichshain. Friends were badly injured after being stabbed several times. Mr Meier died from his injuries.
Media coverage: The attack was reported in detail on the front pages of all the Berlin newspapers.
Police action: On Tuesday, Sven M, 17, was charged with manslaughter. He describes himself as a ‘soccer hooligan’, but maintains he is not a member of any Right-wing group. He claims that before the attack Mr Meier had shot him with an airgun.”
The New York Times, November 24, 1992, describes the event:
“Anarchists and leftists fought a bloody brawl with rightist skinheads at a subway station in eastern Berlin Friday night, and a 27-year-old man, Silvio Meier, who was fighting alongside the leftists, was stabbed to death. A police investigator said one of his attackers wore a patch on his jacket reading, ‘I am proud to be German’.”
Over 3,500 people marched in November 2010 in Meier’s memory. Graphics this year can be found and downloaded from the Web site www.silviomeier.de.vu. One poster includes three images of young people participating in relatively non-violent protest. One portrays a young black man with his arm raised in solidarity. A second shows a group of young people playing and partying on the street, knocking around, goofing, flipping the bird, laughing. A third shows a much larger group marching the street; in this case one of the protesters waves a torch on fire. These images stand in contrast from the more militant images from the demonstration in 2009. You can also click on the link below for a PDF of the poster.
Here again, we find social media at play. This year, a blog entitled “Fighting Fire with Gasoline” posted an announcement for Siempre Antifascista November 2010 in Berlin, an international antifascist festival featuring concerts, a demonstration, and conference.
“According to the RASH site an international Antifa action day is planned for the 11th of November 2010. The Antifa conference with speakers from different countries I am so looking forward to is planned for the 12th to 14th of November. The yearly Silvio-Meier demonstration will also take place during the festival weekend 19/20th. You are all encouraged to use the ‘Siempre Antifascista’ logo for your actions and send the reports to the RASH web site! Remembering means fighting! Kick fascism out of the subcultures!”
The same “Fighting Fire with Gasoline” blog later tells of the Silvio Meier remembrance demonstration in 2010 in which neo-Nazis fire-bombed a shop in Berlin. The post also states:
“[The] right of centre government decided to apply its ‘extremism’ label to governmental funding of so-called civil initiatives, which mostly act against neo-nazis and racism. I don’t think Antifa groups are going to have to go back to black and white flyers, most did not get too close to state funding anyway. But some initiatives especially in the East where doing a good job but I think they will have to sign a clause which says that they support the constitution. That may be the reason why the Silvio-Meier demonstration 2010 will take place under the banner: ‘Fight the Nazis, fight the state!’.”