This is a blog dedicated to a personal interpretation of political news of the day. I attempt to be as knowledgeable as possible before commenting and committing my thoughts to a day's communication.

Thursday, January 07, 2016

A New Year In Germany

"It's unacceptable that women are sexually molested and robbed by young migrants on the streets and public squares of German cities at night."
"Whoever won't accept our rules for living together, including respect for women, can have no place in our society here in Germany."
Andreas Scheuer, general secretary, Christian Social Union, Bavaria

"We don't currently have any suspects, so we don't know who the perpetrators were. All we know is that the police at the scene perceived men aged 18 to 35 from the Arab or North African region."
Wolfgang Alberts, police chief, Cologne

"In criminal law what's important is proving a crime, and everyone is equal before the law. It doesn't matter where someone comes from, it matters what they did and that we can prove it."
German Justice Minister Heiko Maas 

"At least three-quarters [of the 105 criminal complaints in one night] have a sexual component. In two cases were are investigating crimes that amount to rape."
"At the moment we can't make a serious connection because we don't have the perpetrators from New Year's Eve. It's not excluded that there are overlaps, but that's still the subject of investigation."
Christoph Gilles, Cologne police spokesman
Fireworks explode near Cologne Cathedral (1 Jan)
"On the one hand there's a feeling that what happened is wrong and many people [are] concerned about this. But where people are split is in how to respond. I think it's important to keep the focus on the women who were affected."
"They need to be the focus of attention now and not misused for attacks on the right to asylum."
Antonia Rabente, 26, Cologne student
Well, that's interesting. For quite some time now women in Germany, both female refugees escaping violence in Syria, Afghanistan, the Palestinian Territories and elsewhere, along with German women have been experiencing violent attacks, both robberies and sexual attacks, and it is known that the perpetrators are indeed migrants and other refugees from Africa and the Middle East. But a young German woman cautions against leaping to conclusions inimical to the status of asylum seekers.

Germany, by its own figures, has taken in over a million refugees and migrants over the past several months from those who had flooded Europe. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has appealed to German conscience to respond to those in dire need and many Germans have generously responded. This, in a country already overrun with the presence of Muslims who have sought to emigrate from their countries of origin to find better lives elsewhere.

With the most recent influx Germany now has within its borders well over six million Muslims from across the Middle East and Africa, and Germans have seen with some measure of dismay that their culture, their laws, their social values have been inundated with the fall-out of accepting an overwhelming number of immigrants for whom the German way of life is unappealing but social welfare quite appealing.

The sheer numbers of newcomers to various areas of the country has succeeded in transforming Germany into a society unfamiliar to many Germans.

Reports of inadequate facilities for migrants, housing men and women together with inappropriate toilet facilities and doors that cannot be secured has resulted in sexual attacks on vulnerable women and girls; police involvement has been a constant. And so has the predation. In some hospitals, health workers consider the migrants who seek medical attention, to be little better than savages in their attitudes and behaviours.

Germany is experiencing widespread shock, unaccustomed to the scope and nature of the predatory attacks on women, causing German society to express doubts over how and whether it can manage the integration of such large numbers of migrants. A spokesman for Dusseldorf police, Markus Niesczeri, stated that since 2014 police there have tracked over two thousand suspects of North African origin involved in organized thefts targeting women, distracting them sexually then robbing.

An estimated 1,000 men had gathered around the main station in Cologne close by the Cologne cathedral overlapping Thursday to Friday. Groups of men surrounded individual women who had come out to ring in the new year. The women were harassed, and their belongings looted. And the perpetrators were reported to be of "Arab or North African origin", according to police.

Clearly, the generous-minded Antonia Rabente has not yet been among those German women who have experienced violent sexual exploitation, but if and when she is exposed directly to that situation she may feel somewhat differently about her country's future as a Muslim-emigrant destination.

Several women have complained of being sexually harassed during New Year's festivities in Cologne.
DPA -- Cologne

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