Mouths covered. A gesture coordinated with the Federation. In her stands Interior Minister Nancy Faeser with a rainbow band on her arm
BERLIN – Germany lost the opening match against Japan at the Qatari World Cup, but won the match of dignity and imagination. They look like Marco Pannella’s pupils, when he gagged in front of the screens to protest against Rai’s lack of information on radical referendums, the players of the German nationalwho just before the kick-off, posed for the official photo putting their hand over their mouth.
a metaphorical slap in the face for Gianni Infantinothe ineffable president of Fifa present in the stands at the Khalifa Stadium, which prohibited the competing teams from taking the field with the rainbow band
a gesture of condemnation of the medieval laws of the Emirate, which among other things consider homosexuality a crime. The demonstrative action was agreed and coordinated with the Berlin Federation, who endorsed it in a tweet posted online as soon as the match started: With our captain’s armband, we wanted to set an example of the values we live in the national team: diversity and mutual respect. Being loud together with other nations. This is not about sending a political message: human rights are not negotiable. It should go without saying, but unfortunately it is not. This is why our gesture is all the more important: prohibiting the sash is like trying to shut our mouths. We confirm our position.
But the German protest did not stop there, also involving the federal government: the Minister of the Interior, Nancy Faeser, in fact flew to Qatar and presented herself on the authority rostrum with the armband stupidly prohibited by Fifa on her arm. Yet the hand over the mouth provokes negative reactions among German commentators. A protest halfway between the banal and the grotesque, headlines the Berliner Tagesspiegel, according to which the one chosen by the Mannschaft is a dramaturgy that in fact accepts the diktat of Fifa and Infantino, who continue to mythologize these world championships in an unbearable way, marked by deaths at work and by the reality of an obscurantist regime. Of course, more sensational and effective would have been to challenge them openly, wearing the armband and risking the threatened collective bookings that could have compromised their progress in the tournament (would they have even had the courage to exclude the entire team?). And it certainly took more courage and took many more risks for the players of Iran – a regime that arrests, tortures and kills those who contest it – who blatantly refused to sing the national anthem and made their support public to the demonstrators.
When these two forms of protest are compared, Germany’s action appears lacking in courage, writes Tobias Nordmann on ntv. But as minimalist as it is, the gesture of the German national team should not be underestimated. Above all for the strength of the image, that of a photo that symbolizes condemnation, distancing and even mockery. And also for a certain creativity, unsuspected in the Germans, at least according to stereotypes. On the other hand, issues such as diversity and respect for all minorities are now deeply rooted in a country that never ceases to deal with the darkest pages of its history. And who approved marriage for all under a Christian-Democratic chancellor, with a transversal majority. Nor needless to recall that, before the Nazi aberration carried out his murderous plans even against all diversity, it was in Berlin that the movement for homosexual rights was born in the early twentieth century. It is in German cities that every year gay pride becomes a true celebration of the people. But Infantino doesn’t know all this. Or he pretends not to know, so as not to embarrass and spoil the party for his hosts, the emirs who have spent so much to have the World Cup in their desert of sand and values.
November 23, 2022 (change November 23, 2022 | 19:29)
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