"Wanted" by German prosecutors after speaking truth to power - Vera Sharav, Survivor of the Shoa
Legal Shenanigans: Nuremberg Prosecutors suspend investigation „for the time being“, only to put Holocaust Survivor on the „Wanted for questioning“ list - essentially making her a suspect.
The legal travesty continues. 15 month after delivering a powerful speech condemming medical experimentation without informed consent and warning of a resurgence of totalitarianism and genocidal policies 75 years after the publication of the Nuremberg Code, Holocaust Survivor Vera Sharav continues to be the object of harassment and intimidation by the State Prosecutors of Bavaria:
Under German Law, State Prosecutors are subject to taking orders of the political government. Bavaria is one of 16 Federal States in Germany, and its State Government is located in the Capital Munich, which has been “the Capital of the (Nazi)-Movement” during the “Third Reich”. Nuremberg, its second largest city, is where the district prosecutor was tasked to assess the merits of a criminal charge of “incitement” due to alleged “trivialisation of the Holocaust” after Vera Sharav addressed the Commemoration Event “75 years of the Nuremberg Code” on August 20th, 2022.
Immediately afterwards, Ms Sharav was reported to the police for alleged “trivialization of the Holocaust” by Jim G. Tobias, according to a local press report in Nuernberger Nachrichten. Tobias, a journalist and “founder of the Nuremberg Institute for Holocaust Studies (Nurinst), is quoted by the Newspaper (which has no qualms to use the same offices Julius Streicher once occupied in the infamous Gauhaus):
“Jim G. Tobias, director of the institute, considers the contents of the speech a denial and relativization of the Shoa, as well as a violation of the paragraph of incitement of the people. ‘This is a clear criminal offense we don't have to talk about’ he says.”
— Nuernberger Nachrichten, August 26, 2022
It has taken the prosecutors 15 month to decide what to do about the charges. At first they had to have the speech translated by the Nuremberg police (even though it had been available online in German translation when Vera Sharav spoke the first word on stage). Almost a year went by for the job to be done and a formal decision had to be taken: to commission another translation, an official one, that was needed to decide whether or not to open a formal investigation. In September of 2023 this translation was completed.
“We have suspended the investigation for the time being”, a spokesperson for the State Prosecutor declared upon request by NAING on Friday. “Ms. Sharav was put on a list of persons wanted by police. This is not an arrest warrant. We are wanting her for questioning”, the spokesperson went on to explain.
There seem to be several issues which make this case highly unusual.
The Nurinst has had a track record of poor funding and was facing its end in 2019. Since 2020 the organisation is receiving funding from the City of Nuremberg, which opens questions as to possible political intervention with regard to discrediting a prominent and inconvenient critic.
Therefore it needs to be investigated whether the city politics in Nuremberg intervened to get a director of an institution that obviously is dependent on public funding to file a criminal complaint (instead of following up on Vera Sharav’s very detailed reasons for parallels, as it should have been expected of such an organization dedicated to Holocaust studies to honor the duty of survivors to speak their mind when they sense a danger of another Holocaust).
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It also needs to be taken into account that the Bavarian Government might have instructed the State Prosecutor to keep the investigation against Vera Sharav essentially open by putting her on the list as a person “wanted” for questioning.
„Vera Sharav is obviously considered a suspect“. This assessment of the prosecutors decision was rendered by Law Professor Martin Schwab upon request of NAING. If they didn’t, the prosecutors would have outright dismissed the complaint for lack of merit. The move to “suspend the case for the time being” while putting Ms. Sharav on the list of persons “wanted for questioning” is considered an attempt to avoid public backlash, which would surely have followed the issuing of a formal arrest warrant against a Holocaust Survivor. “Questioning Vera Sharav in an investigation of charges of incitement and Holocaust trivialization [that her speech is alleged to have constituted] will require to inform her of her rights to not incrimminate herself,” Schwab commented.
It is impossible to not consider Vera Sharav a suspect of the alleged crime and, by the same token, want to question her about it. If you have read the speech, or better watched the recording of it, it is “either/or”. Therefore the Prosecutors must essentially have made up their mind to consider Vera Sharav a suspect.
Or must have been given an order to that effect.
Both alternatives are noting but a scandalous outrage.
The Bavarian Judiciary is essentially considering a Survivor of the Shoa a suspect of the crime of trivializing the Holocaust! A survivor who lost her father in a camp and warned of ominous parallels between then and now, warned against the danger of a possible repeat.