Germany is atwitter over the recent dust-up in the East German town of Muegeln, in which a mob chased a group of (subcontinental) Indian residents of the town through the streets, beating and kicking them, and then walled them up in a pizza parlor. The mob was apparently chanting anti-foreigner slogans, and was trying to break in the back door to the pizza parlor as the police arrived. The Jewish Council warned of increasing anti-foreigner bias in East Germany, leading to the development of "no-go" areas for foreigners in the east (G). These things happen relatively rarely, but the pace seems to be increasing lately (G).
I’m always puzzled by how long it takes police to respond. At football games, there are always long lines of police with dogs, batons, riot helmets, and cameras (to film hooligans) who generally manage to keep order quite well. Any documentary about the 1970s shows police primed and ready to suppress demonstrations with tear gas, water cannons, and liberal use of batons. Shouldn’t there be a some kind of a roving riot squad to intervene in these racist mob incidents before they get out of hand? Dispersing political demonstrations is one thing, but I can’t imagine many civil libertarians would be eager to defend the right of racists to gather in drunken mobs for the purpose of beating and killing people with dark skin.
If I were a foreign-looking resident of the east, I would demand that regional riot squads be formed. They would be drilled on their preparedness to reach any location in their area within 30 minutes, and kept on a high alert during the beer-soaked outdoor Volksfesten so beloved of certain kinds of Germans. When they got a call, they would arrive at the scene with large, intimidating, armored vehicles with deafening sirens and blinding lights, block the outlets, film everything they see, and arrest as many people as possible.
Sure, it would cost money, but Ican’t think of anything more worth spending money on than protecting citizens from drunken, murderous mobs. Can you?*
* Perhaps you could take some of the millions of taxpayer dollars spent monitoring Scientology and warning competent adults against its sinister wiles (see here, here, here, here, here, and here), and divert it into an effective response to a problem that actually damages Germany’s international reputation and endangers the lives of its citizens. Just a suggestion.