Marian Offman, a prominent member of Munich’s Jewish community, clashed verbally with the demonstrators at the anti-government rally in Munich. Both parties filed charges after the incident.
Marian Offman, former deputy chair of the Jewish community of Munich and Upper Bavaria, filed antisemitic harassment charges against two right-wing demonstrators who attended a protest of COVID-19 pandemic restrictions on the anniversary of Kristallnacht on November 9, reports The Jerusalem Post.
Offman clashed verbally with the demonstrators, challenging them for their comparing pandemic restrictions to the persecution of Jews during the Holocaust. The police eventually intervened.
Both Offman and the demonstrators filed charges. One of the demonstrators is a representative of the far-right Alternative for Germany party AfD.
The use of Holocaust imagery to protest coronavirus protocols and other public health measures became frequent in Germany during the pandemic, despite the country’s strict laws against trivialising or minimising the Holocaust. Offman saw an anti-vax demonstrator „holding a poster with a Jewish star on it, which is forbidden,” while attending a counter-demonstration of about 300 people.
„I said to the police, ‘That is forbidden,’ and they took the poster,” said Offman, who then saw a woman holding a similar sign. „I asked her if she thought it was ok to have a demonstration like this of all days on the ninth of November,” the anniversary of Kristallnacht.
She countered, inaccurately, that it was also the anniversary of a failed attempt on the life of Adolf Hitler by George Elser, which took place on Nov. 8, 1939. „I said I was sorry that they had not killed Hitler, and if I had had the chance, I would have done it, given the fact that part of my family was wiped out by the Nazis. Then she asked me: ‘Where is your humanity?’ I was so surprised, but I said nothing. Then she said, ‘People like you can get away with anything; you are above the law.’ It was blatant antisemitism.”
Offman said this infuriated him. „I got very angry, called him an asshole, and said, ‘I’ll take you to court because of this.'” The police escorted Offman from the scene, taking him by both arms, which he claims were as if he was like a criminal, while he was going willingly.
Meanwhile, according to the Suddeutsche Zeitung newspaper, the organiser of the right-wing demonstration, attorney Markus Haintz, ended the event early after speaking with an unnamed „gentleman of Jewish origin” who apparently convinced him that the rally should not have been held on the Kristallnacht anniversary.