Easter marches in Germany: “No to war”

Status: 04/16/2022 3:10 p.m.

Against the Russian attack – but also against arms for Ukraine. The peace movement is on the streets of dozens of cities today. She considers her demands highly topical – but the criticism of her is clear.

In nearly 80 cities, people gathered for the peace movement’s Easter marches. The main themes of the Easter marches are condemnation of the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine and criticism of the planned massive reinforcement of the German armed forces.

According to the organisers, around 1,100 people took part in the Easter march in Bremen. According to the police, around 400 participants gathered in Berlin at noon. According to the police, more than 500 demonstrators gathered in Hanover. “End the war in Ukraine” or “No to war” appeared on banners, but also “Those who deliver arms will reap war”.

“Our demands are more relevant than ever”

“Our demands for peace and disarmament are more topical than ever, especially in the face of the danger of a possible nuclear escalation,” explained Kristian Golla of the Peace Cooperation Network in Bonn, which coordinates responsible national actions at national level. regional.

Referring to Ukraine, Eberhard Przyrembel of the Rhein-Ruhr Easter March said that Russia’s “scandalous and particularly cruel war” also exposed the political failure in Germany, “because for 18 years all federal governments have pursued the same “defensive” peace policy with the armaments industry”. The massive increase in arms spending just announced is “not a turning point, but the desperate pursuit of the same thing over and over again”.

Habeck: pacifism “a distant dream”

Vice-Chancellor Robert Habeck, meanwhile, warned against the abuse of the protests. “Peace cannot and will only come if Putin stops his war of aggression,” the green politician told the Funke media group newspapers. Thus, the Easter marches should make it clear that they are directed against the Russian President’s war: “It is clear who is the aggressor in this war and who is defending in need and who we must support – including with weapons”.

Pacifism is “a distant dream” at the moment, Habeck said. Putin threatens the freedom of Europe. “War crimes are obviously part of his war. Helpless civilians are deliberately killed, prisoners of war executed, families murdered, hospitals bombarded with rockets.” For him, it is true that “looking is the greatest culpability”.

Statement from Habeck on the Easter Marches

Tagesschau 4:40 a.m., April 16, 2022

Right to arms for self-defense

Foreign FDP politician Alexander Graf Lambsdorff even called the participants “Vladimir Putin’s fifth column”.

Former Bundestag President Wolfgang Thierse also stressed Ukraine’s right to self-defense. The motto “Create peace without weapons” is currently an arrogance towards the Ukrainian people, Thierse told them Bavarian radio. Pacifism at the expense of others is cynical.

Käßmann defends Easter marches

Former EKD president Margot Käßmann defended NDR Information the critical attitude of the peace movement towards arms deliveries. In their opinion, more weapons will not end the war.

On the contrary: “The greatest danger at the moment is that this conflict escalates to such an extent that the NATO countries effectively become warring parties, and then I must say that the fear is indeed justified. Because such a war will probably lead to the use of nuclear weapons would.” It is not fair to accuse people who have worked for peace for decades of siding with Russia.

Decades of tradition

Easter marches for peace have a long tradition. On Good Friday 1960, opponents of nuclear war launched the first Easter March in Germany. After that, sometimes hundreds of thousands of participants came to the demonstrations.

Criticism of the Easter Marches: Pacifism is currently a distant dream

Angela Tesch, ARD Berlin, April 16, 2022 12:37 p.m.

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