we have not managed for a while to put together a summary of what is happening concerning ‚our‘ terrorism case. Unfortunately there was no more English language coverage in the media and we are moving closer to our personal limits when it comes to keeping up with the pace of this campaign. Now, near the end of the year when hopefully most of you and us will find the time to sit back and relax, I’d like to send you a short email with the latest developments.
Also please note the information at the end of this email about a lecture in English language I will be giving next Thursday in Berlin
during the CCC Congress which will be streamed via internet and later will be ready for download.
We would also like to use the opportunity to ask you one more time t consider donating for the campaign. We have received an amazing lot of donations, thank you all. Unfortunately law cases are expensive – as you all know – and we continue to depend on more donations to be able to pay an group of very dedicated lawyers, and support the seven accused plus close to 20 witnesses. In German law they are all threatened with up to six months of coercive detention and/or high fines if they refuse to testify against their friends, collegues or (former) room mates.
The great news ist that already Nov 28 the other three who were arrested in July were set free. Arrest warrant still in place, but the Federal High court decided that they should be let out of prison on bail. It was not easy to raise the €90.000 Euro, but one day later everyone set free.
The other important detail is that the court in this same decision decided that all seven are no longer accused of forming a terrorist organisation. An intense public debate in most of the big German media preceded this, discussing how a terrorist organisation can and should be defined today. Most statements after the decision by the High Court agreed with us that this constitutes another ’slap in the face‘ of the Federal Prosecutor. On the other hand the court also decided that all seven are now to be prosecuted for forming a ‚militant organisation‘, §129 instead of §129a of the German penal code, possible sentences up to 5 instead of up to 10 years of prison.
Not what we had hoped for, but a lot more than most had thought possible.
During this time we have extended our campaign calling for the end to all $129a-proceedings on the grounds that these inquiries are mainly used to intimidate and spy on activist movements. Several other investigations under this article against activists are being conducted.
// For background on the German anti-terrorim article §129a see again „Crime by association – Terrorist law used to criminalise critical research“, by Statewatch (http://einstellung.so36.net/en/ps/392). //
We have organised two larger events in Berlin in November and December that attracted large audiences. Both were recorded and are online – for those of you who do understand German. One drew the parallel to the case against the american artist Steve Kurtz, member of the Critical Art Ensemble and accused of bioterrorism in 2004 (details at http://www.caedefensefund.org). We showed excerpts of the excellent documentary by Lynn Hershman ‚Strange Culture‘, http://strangeculture.net/ and if you have the chance to see it don’t miss it!
// Audio recording at http://einstellung.so36.net/de/ps/723 //
The other event, „We are all terrorists“, took place in the Volksbühne theatre. Actors did a reading of excerpts of adapted case files in the beginning and then suspects in four different terrorism cases against political activists presented details from their respective cases. Often similar absurdities such as it being considered suspicious that a group of young antifascists did not participate in the protests against the G8, did not mention certain issues in their phone calls, did not discuss antimilitarim – they, too, are accused of setting fire to army vehicles. Again only in German, but very much worthwhile watching.
// Video at http://chaosradio.ccc.de/ctv106.html //
We’d love to have the capacities to translate all of this into English, but for the moment we don’t. If anyone can think of possible funding for translations/subtitling of any of this please let us know.
Thursday, Dec 27, 18:30 GMT+1 during the 24th annual Chaos Communication
What is terrorism? And who is terrorising whom?
I’ll be giving a 1h lecture about life with surveillance as the partner of a terrorism suspect about life with surveillance and blogging about
it. Details at http://events.ccc.de/congress/2007/Fahrplan/events/2381.en.html
Find out when the live stream is happening in your part of the world at http://tinyurl.com/2r5klz
Details about documentation will be published soon at http://events.ccc.de/congress/2007/Conference_Documentation
Last but not least we prolongued the deadline for our contest „What is terrorism“.
You can still send in / upload your contributions with your definition of terrorism until Feb 15! See other contributions at http://einstellung.so36.net/en/what-is-terror/contributions and please forward this information.
All the best from Berlin and looking forward to a better 2008