Out of Nothingness (In the Fade)

Cinematically, In the Fade (Aus dem Nichts) is an excellent film. Its three chapters are shot in three distinct styles; Diane Kruger’s performance is exquisite, from the tiny details on her facial expressions to the physical bearing of her presence on screen; the soundtrack is excellently matched to the plot and succinct; the Golden Dawn link provides further relevance (Greek acclaimed film director Yannis Economides is extremely convincing in his part): all these elements testify to a feat of artistic thoroughness in Fatih Akin’s latest feature.

The film’s reception in the UK however, causes a lot of scepticism. The film arrived in UK cinemas with several months’ delay. The Guardian ditched it; not only the Nazi’s are dubbed ‘terrorists’ at start, but Peter Bradshaw makes an outright political judgement that, while the film is right to pick on Europe’s xenophobia, the real issue is the Islamists’ attacks and the “Islamophobe panic they are intended to create” – as if Islamophobia were the direct outcome of terrorism. What the clearly politically biassed critic silences is that, while the highest body-count of terrorist attacks is in fact seen in Muslim countries (Egypt, Iraq, Afghanistan), the far-right and Neo-Nazi ideology has taken on in Europe big time, even during the couple of weeks following the film’s release.

The film strikes a fine balance between post-90’s liberalism, post-WWII German conscience, and today’s regression into xenophobia. While the couple depicted in the film are leading a comfortable family life, they are neither well-off nor a typical conservative kitsch household. Their illegal-drug past may still cast shadows, but they seem very much in control of their lives. While Katja senses that the murder of her partner and child was a neo-Nazi attack, the father of one of the culprits gives them away–the father is alerted of the resemblance to the murders of 2000-2007, when nine ethnic minority male citizens were murdered by the National-Socialist Underground. The film’s point is that no-one in Germany should be negligent of these murders. Today’s xenophobia, from Italy to the US, and back in the EU via the Wisegrad countries’ Trump-style anti-immigrant policies, should remind us that no-one should be negligent of the NSU and their trial.

In the film, the link to the Greek Golden Dawn (GD) is explicit. GD provide a fake alibi and help the neo-Nazis culprits escape to Greece. Katja, having lost faith in justice, tracks them down. The finale consists in a suicide attack by Katja (using the same kind of nail-bomb that had been described to her in tortuous detail during the trial). Is this what Guardian readers find so uncomfortable? That there is such a thing as a non-terrorist suicide bomber? Or that the perpetrator is not an Islamist? Or that the victims are not liberal Europeans, but a bunch of proper hardcore Nazis? Or is it that the film highlights Europe’s xenophobic regime? Mainstream politics increasingly recede into the dark waters of what Europe has known only too well: from Germany’s failing government to EU’s financial elites, the liberals are sucking up to the xenophobes and the neo-Nazis. What is to be done? The Golden Dawn trial is ongoing. There is still more evidence to be dug out. However, the public is paying little attention to the revelations of the trial proceedings. It is time to take action, to expose unremittingly the true nature and purpose of neo-Nazis masquerading as “nationalists” and “patriots” in order to harness people’s anger and divert it away from its true causes – inequality, austerity and the bleak future that they augur – and convert it to hatred towards the “others”.

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Golden Dawn Trial: Audio-Visual Evidence

Omnia TV have reported on days 255 and 256 of the trial and published several videos evidencing the Nazi character of GD.

One shocking video shows how high-ranking Christos Papas has been educating his children in Nazi ideology:


<p><a href=”https://vimeo.com/277092504″>&Delta;ί&kappa;&eta; &Chi;&Alpha; – &alpha;&nu;&alpha;&gamma;&nu;&omega;&sigma;&tau;έ&alpha;: &Tau;&alpha; &beta;ί&nu;&tau;&epsilon;&omicron; &alpha;&pi;ό &tau;&omicron;&nu; &sigma;&kappa;&lambda;&eta;&rho;ό &delta;ί&sigma;&kappa;&omicron; &tau;&omicron;&upsilon; &Chi;&rho;. &Pi;&alpha;&pi;&pi;ά</a> from <a href=”https://vimeo.com/omniatv”>omniatv</a&gt; on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

For more see Omnia TV’s full report.

Fortress Europe: 34,361 documented deaths of refugees and migrants

UMITED Against Refugee Deaths have published data on the bodycount of deaths of refugees and migrants as of 5 May 2018.

See here for the map: http://unitedagainstrefugeedeaths.eu/map/

See here for the list: http://unitedagainstrefugeedeaths.eu/about-the-campaign/about-the-united-list-of-deaths/

Refugee Solidarity Night at SOAS

When: 17 November 2017, at 19:00

Where: SOAS University of London, Thornhaugh Street, WC1H 0XG London (map: http://osm.org/go/euu4lMP2J)

Join us for a film screening, music, food and more on the occasion of the Athens Polytechnic Uprising commemoration day!

We are proud to be hosting the following events:

19.00: Screening of “Spectres Are Haunting Europe”

20.30: Live music with the SOAS Rebetiko Band and other musicians

Admission is free! Homemade food will be sold at the SOAS Junior Common Room from 19.30 onwards. Proceeds and donations will go towards the running of the Refugee Legal Support project in Athens!

Spectres Are Haunting Europe” is an award winning documentary by Maria Kourkouta and Niki Giannari. Starting as a project about the Greek Civil War, it developed into a documentary following the daily life of refugees (Syrian, Kurdish, Pakistani, Afghani, and other) in the camp of Idomeni in Northern Greece. One day, Europe closes its borders for them once and for all. The film is “a call to welcome the refugees that cross the European borders, as well as the ghosts that return with them”.

The SOAS Rebetiko Band is “diasporic music-making in action”. Created out of Ed Emery’s musical seminars at the School of Oriental and African Studies, they have worked hard to highlight the shared musical cultures of Greeks and Turks. Rebetiko is a broad music genre of Greece, consisting of urban songs and instrumental music which developed in and around the major port areas of Eastern Mediterranean (Smyrna/Izmir, Istanbull, Syros, Piraeus and Thessaloniki).

Police beating & throwing rocks at refugees in Moria camp, Lesvos

Two videos emerged where police are shown to beat refugees when down and throwing rocks at them inside Moria camp on Lesvos. The events took place on June 18th, when refugees protested about the conditions of their detention.

https://twitter.com/dromografos/status/888271219576799233/video/1

https://twitter.com/UnitedRescueAid/status/887277692831313920/video/1

Theofilou to walk free

After five years in prison, since his arrest over deadly armed robbery, anarchist communist Tasos Theofilou is acquitted of all charges, including that of guerilla group membership.

Read the news item by Kathimerini here.

See a video on the case, made by Infowar in late 2016, here.

Justice for Irianna

Please sign and share
https://www.change.org/p/justice-for-irianna

To:

  • Mr Stavros N. Kontonis. Minister of Justice.
  • Dr Vassilios Alexandris, President, Athens Bar Association

 

29-year-old Irianna lived in Cholargos, a middle class suburb of Athens. She worked as a Modern Greek teacher and pursued a PhD in linguistics at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens. She also taught Greek to young refugees.

Her relatively normal life was abruptly disrupted on June 1st 2017 – when a court of appeal convicted her as a member of the terrorist organisation Conspiracy of the Cores of Fire and possession, transport, and concealment of illegal firearms, and sentenced to thirteen years in prison.
The evidence for her connection to the Cores of Fire was her partner, who was arrested in 2011, on the same charges, and put on trial. Following his trial he was unanimously acquitted at the prosecution’s request. Incomprehensibly, Irianna is now accused of being a member of that organisation because she is related to someone who is not a member of that organisation!
As for the charge of possession, transport and concealment of illegal firearms, the court based its verdict on expert testimony that Irianna’s DNA was found on a magazine (not attached to a weapon), that was discovered in a box (the firearms were never used in any criminal activity) and were found by a mystery witness who did not testify in court and was not cross-examined by Irianna’s lawyers. Even the powerful anti-terrorist squad wasn’t able to locate him. Irianna’s legal team requested that the DNA analysis be repeated by a different expert (from the court’s roster), but was told that the sample was so small that it only sufficed for one test (it was destroyed in the process) and therefore no second test could be carried out. Nonetheless, a second highly respected and vastly experienced expert who has previously worked with the Greek police, Dr. George Fitsialos, considered the results of the existing test and concluded that the results were extremely inadequate and no definite conclusions could be drawn from them. His scientific testimony, full of concrete evidence though it was, was in the end disregarded by the court. In a further twist of cruelty, the court refused Irianna bail pending her appeal to a higher court. The judges found her guilty and, on the same afternoon, she  was taken to jail.
A young woman’s life and future is at stake. At times when terror threats are rising and insecurity is widespread, we look to the Justice system to protect the innocent in the face of abuses of power.  This seems not to have happened here. This travesty of justice must be stopped.

To his credit, the Minister of Justice, Stavros Kontonis, has now requested from the court the rationale leading to their verdict and we call on him to react as speedily as possible.
With this petition we express our support and solidarity with Irianna and ask the relevant authorities to:

  • Reconsider the case taking into account the full range of available scientific testimony.
  • To proceed as speedily as possible with the publication of the final judgment and its rationale
  • To restore the injustice done to an innocent young woman.

You can read more about Irianna’s case here:
http://www.tanea.gr/opinions/all-opinions/article/5453134/h-hrianna-sth-fylakh/
https://medium.com/athenslivegr/a-young-woman-is-in-a-greek-jail-for-no-reason-90a35fb3fd6 (English)
https://medium.com/@YiannisBab/iriana-was-an-ordinary-29yo-academic-31f80c94696c (English)
http://tvxs.gr/news/ellada/dekatria-xronia-fylakisi-gia-sxesi-me-enan-athoo
http://news247.gr/eidiseis/koinonia/eglima/aithma-na-anastalei-h-poinh-ths-zhta-h-29xronh-hrianna.4714227.html
http://www.efsyn.gr/arthro/amesa-antanaklastika-kontoni-gia-tin-irianna
http://www.efsyn.gr/arthro/i-anastoli-den-einai-gia-tin-irianna
http://www.alfavita.gr/arthron/koinonia/gia-tin-irianna
http://www.publico.es/internacional/irianna-condenada-13-anos-carcel.html (Spanish)
https://www.thepressproject.gr/article/112689/Athoos-o-Gkikas-kai-13-xronia-stin-Irianna#.WT9mHD1Ij6E.facebook
http://www.documentonews.gr/article/paizoyn-skaki-stis-plates-mas-xwris-na-exoyn-antipalo
http://popaganda.gr/irianna-vl/

This petition will be delivered to:

  • Minister of Justice, Greece
    Stavros Kontonis
  • President, Athens Bar Association
    Vasilios Alexandris