Police Brutality at Palestine Solidarity Sit-in

Statement by Jewish activist arrested outside Springer Building


On Wednesday, I participated in a peaceful sit-in outside the Axel Springer building in response to a Zionist propaganda event sponsored by The Jerusalem Post and Die Welt. A few hundred folks came, we held speeches, chanted and were loud and visible in our unequivocal support for Gaza and Palestine.

I gave a brief speech in which I made it clear that the equating of Judaism and Zionism is truly antisemitic, not to mention the instrumentalizing of Jewish identity to justify the occupation, ethnic cleansing and genocide of Palestinians. A comrade later told me that she heard the police, who at that point wanted to approach me, say “not now, we’ll do it later.”

After an hour or so, the police began violently dragging protestors out of the crowd and hurling them to the sidelines in order to break up the demo. They approached me and the group I was sitting with and attacked us. One cop started to choke my wife Rebekka, who was momentarily unable to breathe, before dragging her away by her feet and brutally arresting me and several others.

After my arrest and on the way to the police van, I said that I am not a native German speaker as a result of my German-Jewish relatives being driven out of Germany and given the legal nature of the matter, I would like to interact in English. The police refused to speak English to me or provide me with a translator, rolling their eyes, goading me and telling me I understood them. I was harassed about what I was doing in Germany and why I had come here, to which I replied that my grandmother was a German-Jewish Holocaust survivor (as I had already said in my speech) and Berlin is my home. Additionally, they spitefully and repeatedly referred to my wife as my “girlfriend” or “friend” despite being corrected upwards of 20 times between the two of us.

We were driven around the city to multiple police stations before ending up at the Gesa (GefangenenSammelstelle) in Spandau, where we were held in custody for hours in separate cells, not allowed to contact a lawyer or make any calls. We were not told where we had been taken.

If you are curious about what real antisemitism looks like, look no further than the German state, police and media interacting with Jewish people in Berlin in 2024. To this day, Germany boasts of the best, most premium antisemitism the world has to offer, while disguising it with their empty, meaningless narrative about memory culture and atonement.

The state-sanctioned violence towards me, my comrades and the entire Palestine solidarity movement is an intimidation tactic. It is a distraction. It is an attempt to silence us and wear us down. What they still haven’t managed to understand is not only that we will not be intimidated, distracted or silenced, but that each and every time they try, they only fuel our fire for liberation more strongly.

All eyes on Rafah. End Zionism. Free Palestine.

This text originally appeared on Rachael’s Instagram account. Follow her at https://www.instagram.com/solarbagel/






All photos: https://www.instagram.com/egultekin_