What follows is the official English translation of an inspiring speech given on January 21st by Götz Kubitschek, a leader of LEGIDA (Leipzig gegen die Islamisierung des Abendlandes/ Leipzig against the Islamization of the West), an offshoot of the Dresden-based PEGIDA movement that has been making the headlines in recent months. The translation is by Nils Wegner.
Good evening Leipzig!
My name is Götz Kubitschek, it is my honour to speak to you tonight, and before answering the question for what we have been demonstrating tonight I want to stress three points:
What we are doing tonight is something perfectly normal. We are worried about our homeland's future, and we take to the streets because parliaments and editorial offices do not care about our worries.
What we are doing tonight is something courageous. It's not quite a piece of cake to make head against Leipzig's violent Leftist thugs.
What we are doing tonight is an example for all of Germany. Be assured: Behind each of you there are a thousand citizens from all parts of Germany. A thousand that cannot be in Leipzig tonight. Thousands are watching us on the web. We thank RUPTLY.TV for the live stream.
Leipzig is setting a good example. All of you are setting a good example.
I would like to add a point: What we are doing tonight is something perfectly justified. It is our constitutional right to take to the streets, to hold demonstrations and to demand changes. This right has been denied to the Dresden people on Monday. There has been an Islamist death threat. [Note: on January 19th, the weekly PEGIDA rally in Dresden had been cancelled due to a terrorist threat; N.W.]
|LEGIDA: flying the flag|
I do not know who of you have been present in Dresden already. I have been there five times and have not heard any anti-Islam hate mongering in a single speech given there.I have also read the Dresden agenda and have not found the slightest anti-Islam hate mongering in there either.
But I also listened carefully to the politicians during the recent weeks and months: Hannelore Kraft of SPD [Social Democratic Party, Minister-President of North Rhine-Westphalia] said about PEGIDA: 'Those who attend those rallies must realize what kind of pied pipers they are following.'
Lorenz Caffier of CDU [Christian Democratic Union, Minister of the Interior of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania] said that all these manifestations were about nothing but 'hate mongering and defamation.'
And Thomas Oppermann of SPD [Chairman of the SPD Parliamentary Group] spoke out most explicitly: 'Those manipulators must be fought.' Now what did Thomas Oppermann mean by that? Does that not sound like a hint for possible assassins? Such politicians are intellectual instigators.
To me, the shocked faces of our politicians now professing the right to demonstrate look cheap and mendacious.
Yesterday, a friend from my village told me: 'I am a craftsman – politicians are just blabbermouths.' I promised him to make use of that word tonight.
Angela Merkel [CDU, Chancellor of Germany], Thomas Oppermann, Wolfgang Thierse [SPD, former president of Bundestag] and other blabbermouths should have been attending the threatened Dresden rally in the front row – not necessarily for PEGIDA's claims, but for PEGIDA's right to demonstrate.
Now what claims am I talking about? For what did we take to the streets in Leipzig tonight? I can bring it down to a single, simple sentence. A slogan that was already bravely called out in Leipzig 25 years ago: 'We are the people!'
All of us here are part of the German people, and the Basic Law [the Federal Republic of Germany's costitutional law] states that this people and no one else holds the power in this country. 'All state authority is derived from from the people,' that is how it is written down in the Basic Law.
All politicians, all state officials, all judges, all policemen have been elected or put in charge by the people and for the people. They are there for us, not we for them! They are there to defend and to foster the welfare of this people, our welfare. We must never forget this: We the people do have the right to take to the streets with our worries about our welfare. We the people do have the right to elect other politicians! But no politician has the right to elect another people!
For our people does not need to be reinvented. A people is not reinvented, it changes – slowly and carefully. Our people always welcomed and accepted foreigners who wanted to become Germans. That never was a problem. But our people must not be replaced.
There is another notion to this. It is not that easy, but it is important for all of us. Our people has a great and particular history. Our people has learned a lot from other peoples, and it also taught a lot to other peoples. Its ingenuity, its organisational talent, its diligence are proverbial. Its music and its philosophy are unique. Our people held its ground in the difficult center of Europe. It waged wars and got dragged into wars.
Why am I enumerating this? I do so because all of us here are the ones obliged and blessed to carry on this German history.
It starts in our families: We do have mothers. We do have fathers. We do have sons. We do have daughters. And we all are part of the whole German history:
We carry on the history of those commoners and peasants who built up our cities.
We carry on the history of Leipzig's printers, and of those lucky citizens who heard Bach play the organ in St. Thomas Church.
We carry on the history of the Battle of Leipzig [in 1813] in which the whole German people fought for its freedom.
|The Battle of Leipzig, the climax of the Napoleonic Wars|
We carry on the history of poor and of rich people, the history of industrious craftsmen and of great scientists, of caring mothers and of strict teachers.
We also carry on the history of ruination: the history of the fallen soldiers, the history of the killed Jews, the history of the cities leveled by bombs and the history of those millions expelled from their home.
And this history leads into what most of us lived to see: the history of partition and of the country torn apart, and then into the great struggle the GDR's citizens dared to fight for all of us, the struggle for freedom and reunification.
We are all continuing the German history. That is no easy task, and regarding it, I have to point out something really painful:
The politicians leading our country in the wrong direction are our compatriots, and the protesters blockading and harassing us are our compatriots, too.
A deep rift runs through our people. And only when we hold our demonstrations in peace, caring about the whole of our people, then we are able to bridge this rift.
We can and we must go all length. We have to make sure that this land remains our land and that our people, undivided, builds its own future.
This is my biggest wish – and it is yours, too, is it not?
|A message that all fair-minded people can agree on.|
Götz Kubitschek, born 1970 in Ravensburg (Baden-Württemberg, Germany) co-founded the "Institut für Staatspolitik“ [State Policy Institute] in 2000. He is head of Antaios publishing house (since 2002) and editor in charge of the bi-monthly Sezession magazine. For the latter's blog, see www.sezession.de.