Berlin: A tank for the Russians – politics
The recent intense debate about the leopard 2 showed how difficult it can be to get tanks from Germany into the Ukraine to export. The author and publisher Wieland Giebel found out that things can also get quite complicated the other way around. For several months now, together with activist Enno Lenze, he has been trying to unload a wrecked Russian army tank right in front of the country’s embassy in Berlin. “We want to put the junk in front of the terrorists’ door again,” says Giebel. “They have murdered, looted, displaced millions of people and just keep going every day.”
First it was the district Berlin Mitte, who did not allow this, also for reasons of piety. People died in the war machine. In October, the Berlin administrative court finally approved the action. Now all that was missing was the right object. Giebel and Lenze found what they were looking for on the premises of the military history museum in Kiev: a T-72B44-ton tank, part of a Russian unit from Mongolia, destroyed in the battle for the Ukrainian capital on March 31 last year. The once brutal weapon now makes a reassuringly pathetic impression: the vehicle is bent along the central axis, the heavy tracks hang limp on the metal wheels.
The picture, so the hope, should go around the world
On Thursday afternoon the tank still in Poland, a few kilometers before the German border. Because such heavy loads can only be transported at night, the driver took a last break. The wreck should be parked opposite the embassy between two and four on Friday night. Just in time for the anniversary of the Russian attack. He is to stand there for a weekend as a sign of solidarity with Ukraine. Giebel is expecting reporters from the BBC to CNN. “The images that we produce here will go around the world.”
The fact that the tank took longer than expected also has to do with very peaceful intentions: the device first had to be “demilitarized” before it could be imported into Germany. This includes, among other things, drilling holes in the on-board cannon.