Statement by Halit Yozgat’s father; “birthday newspaper” filled with hate speech just “teenage nonsense”?
Today’s trial day began with a statement by the father of Halit Yozgat, the murder victim from Kassel. His statement was interrupted once by Zschäpe defence attorney Heer, who claimed that Yozgat had misrepresented his client in calling her a murderer and had not kept to an evaluation of the evidence. After this cynical interruption, Mr. Yozgat was able to finish his statement without further disturbances.
The Yozgat family still feels left alone by the German society and its representatives. Despite a statement of the German chancellor last year promising to do everything it takes to clear up the NSU crimes, hardly any progress has been made. The Court still has not taken into its case file all relevant files, including those from the investigation of domestic secret service agent Temme. Neither has anybody really acknowledged the suffering caused to the family by the police investigation, which had focused on the Yozgat family.
Mr. Yozgat’s has the heartfelt wish that the street Holländische Straße in Kassel, where his son was not only killed, but also born, be renamed Halit-Street – a wish which so far has not been fulfilled. The city of Kassel has named a square after Halit Yozgat, but this is not what the family had wished. In his despair, Mr. Yozgat ended his statement with a plea to the court that it make possible this renaming of the street.
“If you decide that the Holländische Straße be renamed Halit-Street, I will invite the fathers of Uwe Mundlos and Uwe Böhnhardt to the renaming ceremony and we will release white Doves as a symbol of peace.”
If anybody in a position of authority is actually interested in reconciliation concerning the NSU murders, they will ensure that this plea, albeit directed at the wrong authority, be considered.
This rather depressing statement was followed by the testimony of Jana J., a former close friend of André Kapke and thus closely connected to the Jena Nazi scene, including the NSU members, in the years 1996 to 2000. In 1998, J. and Wohlleben had given to Kapke a self-made “birthday paper”, modeled on the boulevard paper “Bild”. Kapke had traveled to South Africa, where he had tried to find a hiding place for “the Three”, and was given this paper upon his return.
The paper is full of anti-Semitic and racist paroles, incitement to murder and other disgusting content. The witness stated that she had produced this paper, but did not remember details. Looking back today, she classifies this paper as despicable and is ashamed of it, but from the point of view of an eighteen year old who was part of the right wing scene, it was simply “teenage nonsense” in reaction to what she felt was an unjunst criminalization of the Nazi scene.
The witness stated that at that time, everybody in Jena was right wing and xenophobic, the younger people had just been more extreme in this regard. There had been a big Nazi scene in Jena, those that had felt part of it had been able to fit in well, “that was the general atmosphere in Eastern Germany back then”. She described her then-boyfriend André Kapke as being clearly nationalistic, xenophobic and racist. She also stated that she does not have bad memories of anyone from back then.
The witness also recalled a “girls’ night” with Beate Zschäpe in Zschäpe’s apartment in 1997. Zschäpe had shown her a pistol, which she lovingly called Walli. The witness could not recall exactly what type of pistol Zschäpe had shown her, but did recall that Zschäpe had had a shoulder holster so as to be able to carry it around under her clothing.
After Zschäpe, Mundlos and Böhnhardt had gone underground, the witness stated, they had become more important than before for those in the scene. Everybody had talked about “the Three”, albeit not openly, and there had been a game of cat and mouse with the police. André Kapke’s brother had given a concert in order to collect money for the three who had gone underground.
The case of Jana J. shows quite clearly that a strong and dynamic Nazi movement which is accepted, or in any event not openly opposed, by large parts of society is able to integrate large parts of the country’s youth. Apparently it was largely for opportunistic reasons that Jana J. became part of the Nazi scene, took over its ideology, lifestyle etc. and thus fit into her surrounding. Today, living in Berlin and working in the social field, her surroundings have changed and she is opposed to what she used to believe.
J.‘s testimony will be continued on 16 April.