Carsten Schultze – more questions, few answers and an insufficient apology
The questioning of accused Carsten Schultze went on for the entire trial day Wednesday. On Thursday, 20 June, the parties will make statements commenting on his testimony as a whole. Next week will see the beginning of testimony concerning the earliest murders in Nuremberg. The testimony of police officers who had questioned the accused during the investigation, which was originally planned for this week, was pushed back due to delays in the trial so far.
Just like yesterday, the questioning of Schultze was a rather labored process and largely informed by incomprehensible memory gaps. Schultze did at least describe, upon questioning, how he visited illegal Nazi concerts, one of which drew a crowd of over 1,000. He also described parties during which Nazi songs were sung. Schultze, who had always stressed that he had never been a racist, now admits to having joined in singing, e.g., a song celebrating the murder of Turkish people. In the years between 1997 and 2001, that had just been a normal part of life.
In the afternoon, Schultze tried to apologize to the NSU victims and their families. This apology seems to be honest, but it still focuses only on the provision of the Ceska pistol to the NSU. Schultze still seems to see his responsibility as limited to this one act. Accordingly, he has concentrated entirely on remembering his precise actions in ordering, retrieving and delivering the pistol. He continues to block out all his other acts in support of the three Nazis who had gone underground, his daily cooperation with Wohlleben, and his other political activities – after all, he led and trained a group of 20 to 30 members of the “Young National Democrats”.
Schultze has still not realized the actual extent of his responsibility, the importance of his support for the existence of the NSU and for their crimes. This severely devalues his apology.
Schultzes testimony incriminates co-accused Wohlleben, who according to Schultze’s recent testimony knew early on that the group had shot and wounded a person and who nonetheless continued to act as their support. However, Schultzes testimony also incriminates the other accused – if even Schultze, who acted solely as an aide and who was at the furthest remove from Zschäpe, Mundlos and Böhnhard in age and political experience, was nonetheless told of the “flash light bomb”, it is very likely that accused Gerlach and Eminger were also informed of this plan.