Hambacher Forest: Information on the arson attack against the vigil of the occupation

Right at the beginning, it should be pointed out that the brief information about the arson attack unfortunately has to rely, in terms of content, primarily on reports from the blogging service “Twitter”. A format unsuitable for serious reporting, which does not nearly meet the criteria for independent media. There, of course, the typical sneering social media comments and fatuous speculations about an alleged orchestration, open expressions of approval and references to the following “begging” for donations are not to be missed. It would make sense if at least the spectrum of activists and supporters who consider themselves anarchist, autonomous, anti-authoritarian, libertarian, or similar, would rely on their own information structures. Twitter cannot replace independent media work with reports in a structured form.

The police investigation is ongoing. The association “Buirer für Buir” has, according to its own statements, informed the executive that Molotov cocktails were discovered at the crime scene and is now hopeful that DNA traces may exist that will contribute to the investigation. The association points out that a vigil is an event in accordance with the right of assembly and that shedding light on the crime would therefore be socially relevant.

It is unlikely that the various groups of activists and supporters will be able to agree on whether cooperation with the police is allowed or even makes sense. In addition to theoretical knowledge about the role of the police, many people on the ground now also have relevant, real experience with the practical work of the state executive and local security services cooperating with it.

To what can be inferred from the reports so far:

In the early morning of December 26, a large part of the vigil and its infrastructure, important for the forest occupation, went up in flames. Pictures show that the info tent was completely destroyed. Other pictures show Molotov cocktails, which were thrown and caused the fire. The memorial for the two activists “Vergissmeynicht” and “Waka”, among others, remained intact. (Vergissmeynicht died in a fatal crash on September 19, 2018, during an eviction in the Hambacher Forest). The former forest squatter “Waka” died on October 7, 2018 in Hajin/Northeast Syria in the fight against Daesh).

The person who was at the vigil that night was staying in a trailer a little further away from the fire. She later reported that she heard several loud bangs, as in an explosion of firecrackers, saw the fire and immediately called the fire department.

Call for donations:

It is clear that there still needs to be a contact and information point like the vigil. Since its establishment, in August 2018 at the corner of L276/L257 between Buir train station and Hambacher Forest, it has been a good opportunity to exchange information together about current developments in Hambacher Forest. Donations for the forest occupation have also been received and sorted here.

In order to be able to continue (and it will continue!) a new stable and all around lockable tent, benches and tables (beer tent set) are now urgently needed. Financial donations are also useful because, among other things, after the examination of the cause of the fire, there will be high expenses for disposal.

Please also donate to the charitable bank account:

IBAN DE03 3705 0299 0147 2708 03


Name of the Bank: Kreissparkasse Köln

Account holder: Initiative Buirer für Buir

Description: Mahnwache

Submitted to Enough 14 in German. Translated by Enough 14