Wednesday, September 21, 2005

terror chic

Astrid Proll and the Prada Meinhof gang

'I haven't put it behind me, it will keep coming up - but it's not me who finds it difficult to forget, it's other people,' she says. 'Of course, I have fond memories, or I couldn't exist. But they're unrecountable. That's not where I'm at because - thank God - life goes on.'

Not for Andreas Baader, Ulrike Meinhof, Gudrun Ensslin and Jan-Carle Raspe, who are all dead. Many more of Proll's former comrades committed suicide or are still in prison. But others on the periphery of those tumultuous times - the lawyers who defended them and those who contributed to the cause as street fighters, including the Green Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer - sit in the German cabinet, while other so-called 68ers form the backbone of the judicial system and the media.

Which leaves Proll, 55, feeling isolated. Despite repeatedly insisting she escaped from the Baader-Meinhof Gang 'before it got really cruel', she has never been allowed to forget her past, or what she calls the 'hole I got myself into'.

The group she belonged to and for whom she drove the getaway car - be it an Alfa-Romeo or a Mercedes, all part of the group's fashion appeal - killed no fewer than 90 people, many of them former Nazi officials. Proll describes the RAF as 'the knife-edge of the general reaction of the young', who were furious at their parents for unquestioningly supporting Hitler.

'Of course it wasn't healthy,' she says. 'The RAF wasn't healthy for anybody - neither the participants, nor their children, nor the State, but it happened and you have to deal with it. But you have also to remember that it was a group of no more than 30 people, yet it did something unheard -of - it took up a concept and followed it through in a very German-determined way.' She remarks that this is not dissimilar to the 11 September terrorists, though insists she does not mean to take the comparison any further.


Stuart Christie interviewed by the legendary 3am press people

"All I can say is that we couldn't know then what we could only know today. Things that appeared possible 30 years ago -- and the way to achieve those ends -- wouldn't work today. Times change, as do tactics and strategies. The currency of that particular form of gestural protest has been debased since the mid-1970s with the murderous campaigns targeting innocent bystanders run by the IRA and ETA, culminating in the crusade-like slaughters of 11 September and the recent Madrid train-bombings. The philosophy and attitude of these guys is exactly the same as Franco's old Foreign Legion commander, General Millan Astray whose constant watchword was 'Viva la muerte!'"

Angry Brigade = British RAF
which Tom Vague know well

This is a nice history of said organisation


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4:22 PM  

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