All posts for West Berlin

12-15-1972 Miss Meinhof Calls Judge Pig Fascist (Stars and Stripes)

A UPI article appearing in Stars and Stripes detailing the angry and defiant comments of an imprisoned Ulrike Meinhof during the trial of Horst Mahler. The article is notable because Meinhof outlines the strategy of the RAF; “what we have done is an encouragement to leftists, we always knew we would meet defeat.” PDF: 12-15-1972 Miss [read all]

10-19-1972 Meinhof Al Fatah Ties Described (Stars and Stripes)

A United Press International article, appearing in Stars and Stripes, describing the testimony of former Baader-Meinhof group member Peter Homann. Homann testified about the training that group received in the Jordanian desert. PDF: 10-19-1972 Meinhof Al Fatah Ties Described

7-21-1972 Army Flies German Terrorist

A Stars and Stripes article about the US military flying Bernhard Braun from West Berlin to Munich at the request of the German govt. PDF: 7-21-1972 Army Flies German Terrorist

11-30-1974 German Guerrilla Leader Draws 8 Year Prison Term (UPI)

Report on sentencing of Ulrike Meinhof, Horst Mahler and Hans-Juergen Backer in November 1974. PDF: 11-30-1974 German Guerrilla Leader Draws 8 Year Prison Term (UPI)

11-12-1974 Germans Order Extra Security (NY Times)

Reporting the fall-out from the death of Holger Meins by hunger strike, including the assasination of Judge Gunter Von Drenkmann and riots in Berlin. PDF: 11-12-1974 Germans Order Extra Security (NY Times)

6-2-1972 Bonn Seizes Suspected Guerrillas (NY Times)

Article on the arrests of Baader and Meins as well as an outline of possible international links. PDF: 6-2-1972 Bonn Seizes Suspected Guerrillas (NY Times)

5-21-1975 German Bonnie, Clyde on Trial (AP)

Article on the eve of the Stammheim trial, still casting Baader and Meinhof as the “Bonnie and Clyde” of the RAF. PDF: 5-21-1975 German Bonnie, Clyde on Trial (AP)

5-15-1970 Raid by Extremists Wounds 3 in Berlin (NY Times)

A brief New York Times article detailing the freeing of Andreas Baader from police custody in a Berlin neighborhood. PDF: 5-15-1970 Raid by Extremists Wounds 3 in Berlin NY Times

5-15-1970 Gunmen Free Arsonist (AP)

A brief Associated Press article detailing the freeing of Andreas Baader from police custody in Berlin. PDF: 5-15-1970 Gunmen Free Arsonist

6-18-1972 The wife who became Public Enemy No 1 (Guardian UK)

Great article by Neal Ascherton on Ulrike Meinhof’s journey toward terror, including memories of conversations with the subject. PDF: 6-18-1972 The wife who became Public Enemy No 1

6-2-1972 Anarchist Leaders Seized in Frankfurt (NY Times)

“Come out, your means are limited, but ours are unlimited.” Great quote attributed to Federal Police in this article on Baader and Meins arrest.  PDF: 6-2-1972 Anarchist Leaders Seized in Frankfurt

3-5-1975 Politician Free Unhurt (AP)

Peter Lorenz is released unharmed after prisoners fly to freedom in Yemen. PDF: 3-5-1975 Politician Free Unhurt

3-3-1975 Four Released in Bid to Save Lorenz (AP)

Report on the deal to  release  four prisoners by the Federal Government to enable the freeing of mayoral candidate Peter Lorenz.  PDF 3-3-1975 Four Released in Bid to Save Lorenz

3-16-1969 Dutschke Assailant gets 7 Years (Stars and Stripes)

Stars and Stripes published a short follow up to the stories the past year detailing the attempted assassination of student leader Rudi Dutschke. His assailaint, Josef Bachmann, was sentenced to seven years for the attack.

February 28, 1975 West Berlin

A Polaroid photo is released early in the morning showing Lorenz with a sign around his neck: “Peter Lorenz, prisoner of the 2 June Movement.” With the photo is a demand for the immediate release of six terrorists: Horst Mahler, Verena Becker, Gabriele Kröcher-Tiedemann, Ingrid Siepmann, Rolf Heissler, and Rolf Pohle. Except for Mahler, all [read all]

February 27, 1975 West Berlin

At about 9:00 AM, Peter Lorenz leaves his home in the Zehlendorf district. Lorenz is the CDU (Christian Democrat Union) candidate for mayor in the West Berlin city elections to be held in three days. Less than half a mile from his house, his Mercedes is blocked by a large truck, and a Fiat rams [read all]

November 29, 1974 West Berlin

Ulrike Meinhof is sentenced to eight years imprisonment for her part in the 1970 freeing of Andreas Baader. Horst Mahler is given an additional 4 years (for a total of 12 years), and Hans- Jürgen Bäcker is found not guilty.

November 10, 1974 West Berlin

The response to Meins’ death is immediate. Demonstrations take place in Frankfurt, Cologne, Hamburg, Berlin, and Stuttgart. In the evening, a delivery man shows up at the door of Günter von Drenkmann, the president of Germany’s Superior Court of Justice. Von Drenkmann, celebrating his 64th birthday, opens the door to the delivery man, and several [read all]

February 13, 1974 West Berlin

The trial for the bombing of Berlin’s British Yacht Club by members of the Movement 2 June begins. Verena Becker, Wolfgang Knupe, and Willi Rather are the defendants. Students and radicals riot outside the courtroom.

Podcast 28: the Return of the Red Army Faction?

A wave of leftist bombings in Berlin makes Richard Huffman wonder whether we are seeing a return to the days of Baader-Meinhof. [display_podcast]  

The Return of the Red Army Faction?

Tuesday, October 11, 2011 – Berlin. The discovery and defusing of a bomb planted in Berlin’s main train station yesterday, the third bomb in a row created apparently by left-wing extremists, unexpectedly sent shivers down my spine. A leftist group called “Hekla Reception Committee — Initiative for more Eruptions in Society ” has claimed responsibility, [read all]

Heinrich “Ali” Jansen

Born in February 1948, Ali Jansen joined the Baader-Meinhof Gang shortly after its return from training in the Jordan desert. He helped out in the “triple coup” Berlin bank raids in the fall of 1970. Jansen was arrested on 23 December, 1970, along with Uli Scholze. During the arrest Jansen reaches for his concealed handgun [read all]

Eric Grusdat

Eric Grusdat was a an auto shop owner recruited into the Baader-Meinhof Gang soon after the founding members returned from training in Jordan. His employee Karl-Heinz Ruhland joined as well. Grusdat participated in the infamous “triple coup,” bank raid in 1970, where three banks where three Berlin banks were raided at the same time. He [read all]

Irene Goergens

Born April 1951. Underground name: “Peggy.” Irene Goergens was the illegitimate daughter of an American GI. She was a follower of Ulrike Meinhof, having met her while Meinhof was researching youth homes for her telefilm “Bambule.” Goergens was arrested in October of 1970 along with Horst Mahler, Brigitte Asdonk, and Ingrid Schubert. She was tried [read all]

December 12, 1973 West Berlin

Gabi Kröcher-Tiedemann is sentenced to 8 years imprisonment for the attempted murder of a policeman.

August, 1973 West Berlin

Movement 2 June member Inge Viett escapes from her prison cell by sawing through her bars with a smuggled saw.

July 27, 1973 West Berlin

Movement 2 June raids a Berlin bank, netting DM 200,000.

February 2, 1972 West Berlin

A bomb explodes in West Berlin’s British Yacht Club, killing an elderly German boatbuilder, Irwin Beelitz. Movement 2 June claims responsibility, indicating that the attack was in support of the Irish Republican Army.

Chapter 4 — Praxis

May, 1967 – May 1970, 59 pages: The stories of the three major characters, Baader, Meinhof, and Ensslin, merge into one story in this chapter, and follow a straight narrative arc for the rest of the book. But first this chapter will look into the extremes of the student movement, exemplified by a West German [read all]

Chapter 2 — Gudrun

1942 – 1967, 19 pages: This chapter opens with a vivid description of a riot that took place in Berlin on June 2, 1967. Students are demonstrating against a visit by the Shah of Iran when Berlin police began beating them. In the confusion, a policeman shoots a young protestor, Benno Ohnesorg, killing him instantly. [read all]

December 4, 1971 West Berlin

June 2nd Movement members Georg von Rauch and Bommi Baumann are pulled over by a police officer. The cops lines them up on the war, but when the cop is momentarily distracted, von Rauch pulls out his own gun and begins shooting. The cop shoot von Rauch dead. Baumann gets away.

July 21, 1971 West Berlin

Dieter Kunzelmann is arrested for his bombing activities in the West Berlin Tupamaros. Later he will be convicted and sentenced to nine years.

Summer, 1971 West Berlin

Former members of Kommune I, and former members of the now-disbanded West Berlin Tupamaros, form “Movement 2 June.” Andreas Baader and Gudrun Ensslin encourage the group, which includes Bommi Baumann and Fritz Teufel, to join the RAF. They demure, wary of Baader’s insistence on total leadership, and prefer to stay in Berlin anyway.

July 8, 1971 West Berlin

Two Berlin radicals, Thomas Weissbecker (loosely connected to the RAF and future members of Movement 2 June) and Georg von Rauch (soon to help form Movement 2 June), are in a Berlin courtroom, charged with beating a journalist from the hated Springer Press. Von Rauch is convicted and Weissbecker is acquitted, but in the confusion [read all]

Spring 1971, West Berlin

Horst Mahler, Irene Goergens, and Ingrid Schubert go on trial, for their involvement in the release of Baader, in the criminal court of Moabit prison. Mahler is acquitted (though he still has two other charges pending), and Goergens and Schubert are convicted. Goergens gets six years and Schubert gets four.

Spring 1969 West Berlin

Ulrike Meinhof, having grown increasingly disillusioned with her life, divorces her husband, Klaus Rainer Röhl, and moves to Berlin. She continues to write for a while for Röhl’s konkret, but soon quits. Her fashionable Berlin apartment becomes a hangout for many in the left-wing Berlin scene.

February 27, 1969 West Berlin

American president Richard Nixon visits Berlin. Among the many Berliners waiting to greet him are Kommune I members Dieter Kunzelmann and Rainer Langhans. They attempt to bomb Nixon’s motorcade, but the bomb is discovered before it can be triggered. Kunzelmann and Langhans, apparently now members West Berlin Tupamaros (a precursor of Movement 2 June), are [read all]

March 22, 1968 West Berlin

Fritz Teufel and Rainer Langhans of Kommune I are found Not Guilty of Incitement to Arson, for passing out the leaflets the previous spring. According to Baader-Meinhof biographer Jillian Becker, the expert witnesses agree, “the pamphlets were literary compositions, not to be acted on but for theoretical considerations only.” Theoretical to everyone, it seems, except [read all]

Mid-Summer 1967 West Berlin

Andreas Baader meets Gudrun Ensslin at a gathering. They fall in love immediately.

June 3, 1967 West Berlin

A ban on all protest signs and banners is put in effect on the streets of Berlin. A student, Peter Homann, comes up with an ingenious prank to get around the ban; dress up eight people in tee-shirts, each with a single giant letter painted on the front and back. When lined up side-by-side the [read all]

May 24, 1967 West Berlin

Two days after a devastating fire sweeps through a Brussels department store, members of Kommune I, a radical commune, pass out a leaflet at Berlin’s Free University which jokingly suggests that a good way to bring the Marxist Revolution home is to deliberately burn down department stores. Kommune I members Fritz Teufel and Rainer Langhans [read all]

Late May 1970, West Berlin

The first German translation of Carlos Marighella’s “Minimanual of the Urban Guerrilla” is published in Germany for the first time. Marighella was a Latin American revolutionary who had been killed the previous year by Brazilian police. His manual offers concrete advice for bringing traditionally rural Revolutionary tactics into the city. Mahler eats it up and [read all]

May 14 1970, West Berlin

A car pulls up to the Dahlem Institute for Social Research. Two guards get out and escort a handcuffed Andreas Baader to the front door. An elderly employee of the Institute, Georg Linke, escorts them to the reading room, where Ulrike Meinhof waits. Baader’s cuffs are removed and he and Meinhof set to work. Two [read all]

April 1970, West Berlin

Baader receives many visitors in his Tegel prison cell during his first month back in confinement. Mahler visits him many times, as does Berberich. Meinhof visits him as well, as does “Dr. Gretel Weitermeier,” who is actually his fugitive girlfriend, Ensslin. A plan is formulated to get Baader out. It involves a ruse in which [read all]

April 3 1970, West Berlin

On their way from picking up a buried stash of guns, Astrid Proll and Andreas Baader are stopped by police. The cops quickly deduce that Baader is not the “Peter Chenowitz” listed on his forged ID card, but are not quite sure who they have on their hands so they take him into custody. Mahler [read all]

Early March 1970, West Berlin

Baader and Ensslin meet up with Dieter Kunzelmann, whose West Berlin Tupamaros had been mildly terrorizing Berlin the previous year with humorous pranks, and potentially deadly bombs. Kunzelmann wants Baader and Ensslin to join his gang, but the talks break down when Baader suggests that he be the leader rather than Kunzelmann. Horst Mahler, the [read all]

Late February 1970, West Berlin

Two visitors show up at Ulrike Meinhof’s door, needing a place to stay. Bettina and Regine are introduced to “Uncle Hans” and “Aunt Grete;” Andreas Baader and Gudrun Ensslin are back in Berlin.

Winter 1970, West Berlin

Ulrike Meinhof moves from her Dahlem apartment to an apartment on the fashionable Ku-Damm street, along with her twin daughters Bettina and Regine. Filming ends on “Bambule” and editing begins in preparation for a May air date.