Roger Waters dressed up as an SS officer and compared Anne Frank to Al-Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh during his concert in Berlin on May 17.
Roger Waters dressed up as an SS officer and compared Anne Frank to Al-Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh during a concert at the Mercedes-Benz Arena in Berlin last week, reports The Jerusalem Post.
At the show’s beginning, an announcement was displayed on a screen stating, „On a matter of public interest: a court in Frankfurt has ruled that I am not an antisemite. Just to be clear, I condemn antisemitism unreservedly.”
Shortly after the show began, graphics displayed on a crucifix-shaped screen above the stage showed humanoid pigs and shady businessmen „pulling the strings,” which social media users and activists condemned, claiming the imagery is an „antisemitic dog-whistle.”
The screen also displayed names of individuals killed by various authorities and regimes throughout the past century, including Al-Jazeera journalist Abu Akleh, whose name was listed right before Anne Frank, sparking outrage from Israeli and Jewish activists and officials worldwide.
After an intermission, Waters walked on stage in an SS uniform as an inflatable pig with various words and symbols and glowing eyes floated over the crowd and banners in the style of the Third Reich but with crossed hammers instead of a swastika hanging from the ceiling. Waters proceeded to fire a fake machine gun toward the audience.
— Arsen Ostrovsky (@Ostrov_A) May 25, 2023
Supporters of Waters and the BDS movement were rallying outside the Mercedes-Benz Arena.
The German police have launched an investigation into potential inciting conduct by Waters. Police chief inspector Martin Helwig said, „The context of the clothing worn is deemed capable of approving, glorifying or justifying the violent and arbitrary rule of the Nazi regime in a manner that violates the dignity of the victims and thereby disrupts public peace. After the conclusion of the investigation, the case will be forwarded to the Berlin Public Prosecutor’s Office for legal assessment.”
While Nazi symbols, flags and uniforms are prohibited in Germany, Waters is being investigated under a separate law on suspicion of „incitement of the people.”
Waters claims that he was opposing fascism and bigotry when he wore the Nazi-style uniform on stage during the Berlin concert, saying that aspects of his performance that have been questioned were „quite clearly” a statement against fascism, injustice and bigotry.
— Roger Waters ✊ (@rogerwaters) May 26, 2023