After his much-discussed and widely criticized concerts in Germany, the tour stop in Berlin could still have consequences for Roger Waters. As reported by the news portal “Jewishnews” according to “T-Online”, the police are apparently investigating the singer. A police spokesman confirmed this to the portal.
State security is investigating Waters for hate speech because he is accused of wearing a black leather coat with a red armband at his gig on May 17 in the Mercedes-Benz Arena. He was accompanied by two “soldiers” and fired into the audience with a fake machine gun. A staging that “is suitable for glorifying the rule of the National Socialists,” according to police circles. According to the first assessment, the clothes obviously refer too much to Nazi symbols, the presentation of which is fundamentally forbidden in Germany.
great news Berlin police have launched a criminal investigation into Roger Waters following his concert in which he dressed like a Nazi SS officer holding a gun and denigrated the murder of Anne Frank.
shockingly @AMCTheatres is promoting Waters currently. pic.twitter.com/6AlIHMmbR2
— StopAntisemitism (@StopAntisemites) May 25, 2023
Roger Waters provoked with Schwein and Anne Frank
In addition to the outfit, Waters also released the well-known pig balloon, which also features a Star of David. Furthermore, outrage was caused when Waters displayed the names of people killed on a large screen, including Anne Frank and the Palestinian Jazeera journalist Shirin Abu Akle, who was killed in an Israeli military operation in the West Bank in 2002.
Waters also uses the concerts on his “This Is Not A Drill” tour to express his criticism of Israel and the country’s settlement policy. He is considered a vocal supporter of the BDS movement. In the run-up to the musician’s concerts, some politicians had checked whether it was possible not to let them take place. A decision in Frankfurt, however, was legally overturned (although not without the court pointing out that it would be a tasteless stage show). After the performance in Berlin, the Israeli Foreign Ministry was appalled, tweeting that “in Berlin the memory of Anne Frank and the six million Jews murdered during the Holocaust” had been soiled.
Next Sunday Roger Waters plays in Frankfurt. As with other gigs by the former Pink Floyd musician, protests can be expected around the event. Charlotte Knobloch, President of the Jewish community in Munich and Upper Bavaria, positioned herself in front of the hall in Munich last Sunday and declared: “Hit baiting against Jews obviously has a place in this country. This square is now the Olympic Hall.”
What consequences could the investigation have for Roger Waters?
It is not yet possible to foresee what consequences the state security investigation will have for Roger Waters after the concert in Berlin. Basically, an initial suspicion justifies the investigation. It is not easy to say whether there will be a procedure because of this. In similar cases, freedom of art is often brought into play, whereby in the specific case when remembering symbols of National Socialism, it is important whether or not they are embedded in an ironic or narrative context that is recognizable to all viewers.