Some 17,000 Germans braved freezing temperatures to form a human chain around central Dresden Feb. 13, blocking some 1,000 followers of the neo-Nazi National Democratic (sic) Party (NPD) from holding a “funeral march” on the city to mark the 66th anniversary of the Allied bombardment during World War II. Under the banner of the local “Nazi-Free Dresden” organization, the anti-fascists wore white roses on their lapels (to commemorate the White Rose student resistance group of the 1940s) and encircled the city center while bells tolled from the churches. “The people of Dresden are defending their remembrance,” said German Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere, who presided at the official commemoration of the air raids that killed an estimated 25,000. (DW-World, DPA, AFP, Feb. 13)
One day before in Budapest, neo-Nazis marched to commemorate what they term the “Day of Honor,” Feb. 12, 1945, when German and Hungarian soldiers made their last stand at Buda (Budinsky) Castle against the Soviet forces besieging the city. The city fell to the Red Army the following day. The “Day of Honor” march has been growing in recent years, attracting hundreds of neo-Nazis from across Europe. (Romea, Prague, Feb. 12)
See our last posts on contemporary politics of World War II, Hungary, and Germany and the radical right resurgence in Central Europe.