BERLIN, Germany — A radical feminist group has taken credit for an ongoing series of attacks on pro-life advocates in Germany, including the vandalism of two churches and the burning of a pro-life journalist's car.
On December 27, an evangelical church in the town of Tübingen was spray-painted and a minibus was set on fire in front of the church. Authorities estimated that the vandals caused 40,000 euro in damages.
Shortly after the vandalism, a confession letter was posted online on the website indymedia, where the church was accused of “anti-feminist attitudes.” The letter was singed by a group calling themselves the “Feminist Autonomous Cell.”
Four days later, on the same website, the group said that they had “torched” the SUV belonging to German journalist Gunnar Schupelius. Schupelius, a columnist for the newspaper BZ, has written pieces supporting pro-life views. In the “confession” letter, Schupelius’s home address was published in a bid to incite further violence.
This was the second time Schupelius’ car was destroyed by arson. The first arson attack happened in 2014, and, as in 2019, a confession was published online.
The following week, the “Feminist Autonomus Cell” vandalized another church, this time in Berlin. The church, St. Elisabeth, is located in the city’s Schoneberg district.
On the night of January 8-9, paint was thrown at the church building. Later, a letter was posted online that explained the paint attack was in response to the church hosting participants during the March for Life, an event held annually in September.
St. Elisabeth’s hosted the pre-march event “Impact Congress 2019.” The event was aimed to connect pro-life activists throughout Europe. This, according to the vandals, was unacceptable. In the letter taking credit for the attack, the vandals said that the March for Life serves as a platform for “fundamentalist, anti-trans, homophobic, anti-Semitic, mysoginist, patriarchal and right-wing conservative” speakers, and therefore they the attack was legitimate.
The Federal Association for the Right to Life (Bundesverband Lebensrecht e.V, or “BVL”) posted a letter on its website refuting these claims, and said that they do not “recruit” any speaker of any ideology.
“We exclusively promote the cause, namely the unrestricted right of any human being to his life, no matter where he comes from, what he looks like, what his religious or political attitude is, or where he is,” said the letter from the BVL. The letter was published in German.
“If that is ‘right,’ then logically the opposite is ‘left,’ i.e. misanthropy, xenophobia, hostility towards children, hatred of Christians, Muslims, Jews, etc.,” the letter added.
“Fortunately, there are millions of people who are not disconcerted by this nonsense of attempted misclassification, including, of course, many Christians who are not attached to any kind of phobia, hatred or attitude of discrimination, either against homosexuals, Jews, women or others. For all this is self-defeating if you take Christianity seriously and know it."
No arrests have been made in response to the attacks. Last year, a record crowd of 8,000 took part in Germany’s March for Life.