Arsonists Hit Pro-Refugee Art Project

The Local, March 31, 2015

An art installation dedicated to refugees was burnt down in Berlin early on Tuesday, with police suspecting it to be an arson attack.

The “House of 28 doors” is an art project in Berlin-Kreuzberg intended to show solidarity with refugees around the world and protest against the EU’s asylum policies.

The installation was set aflame in the early hours of Tuesday morning, according to a Berlin police report.

Fire services tried to put out the flames, but could not save the installation. Police suspect the case to be arson because of its symbolic importance to refugees.


Police said they initially arrested a 25 year-old man at the scene, but later released him after witnesses said they did not recognize him. A criminal investigation is now in action.

The installation was originally located in Tempelhofer Park, but was then moved to Kreuzberg’s Oranienplatz in August 2014 because of the square’s political significance.

Oranienplatz had been the site of a camp protesting against EU refugee policy for over 18 months. The camp was the source of a lot of tension between refugees and local residents, making the area a focus for charities and organizations who help refugees and asylum seekers.


One of these is Give Something Back to Berlin (GSBTB), a charity that works on community projects aimed at “young, international ‘new Berliners”, and organizes workshops, English classes and other events for refugees.

Lucy Thomas of GSBTB told The Local that the installation had already become a target of anti-refugee feeling, having been broken into and vandalized only last week.

As well as the culture of xenophobia among a minority of people; Thomas cited the heart of the problem as “the backtracking and unkept promises from the government and city council”.

This means that “many [refugees] are now homeless and do not have access to basic shelter or any sort of social security”, she added

She also said that tensions and resentment were fuelled by “the lack of constructive solutions to provide adequate long term perspectives for the refugees.”

Thomas remains positive nonetheless, saying that “overall Berlin is still for the most part a welcoming and forward thinking city, as seen with our 3000 strong GSBTB Community which is made up of global migrants from all over the world. ”

‘Stuck in perpetuity’

The group of artists behind the House of 28 Doors explained its message their website:

“It is dedicated to all those people who became refugees due to the destruction of their basic existence in their home countries, environmental disasters as well as unjust economical and trade conditions.”

“Many of those die at the external borders of the European Union; others reach European territory but find themselves stuck in the perpetuity of the improvised system.”

The 28 doors represented each member state of the EU, and three personal stories of refugees currently living in Berlin are shown on three screens inside the building.

The EU flag that flew over the building was black as a sign of mourning for those who drowned trying to cross the Mediterranean.

This suspected arson attack comes in the context of anti-refugee feeling from certain parts of German society .

There were over 200 attacks on refugees and their accommodation in 2014, which represents a sharp increase compared to the previous year.

Last year was also the year where the number of foreigners in Germany hit a record high, while right-wing extremists have been active in recent months, whether it be threatening politicians,attacking journalists or attending anti-Islam Pegida protests.

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  • Chip Carver

    Well, it’s a start.

    From humble beginnings…

    • ValKilmerBeforeHeGotFat

      Well said

    • Charles Martel

      It might be a hoax like the NAACP black stuff on the wall.

  • phorning

    When there was a fire at a mosque in Houston a month or so ago the media immediately ran with the arson angle. The truth ended up being it was started by a transient who had lit a fire next to the building to keep warm that got out of control. Probably the same sort of thing happened here.

  • David Ashton

    In Britain the radical left worked up an anti-“racist” alliance with the slogan “Here to Stay-Here to FIGHT!”

    • ElGringo

      Precisely. They’re here to destroy you. At least I can say that I respect the honesty.

      • Speedy Steve

        That was probably not the leftists’ intention. Fighting usually means giving strangers something that’s not theirs in the first place.

  • Susannah

    These “refugees” need to rise all right…and make something of their homelands. The West is not responsible for their upkeep, especially when it seemingly extends into perpetuity. They have nothing of value to offer the West in 99% of cases, and they do not belong in Germany or any other European or European-descended nation.

    • SentryattheGate

      Yes, and the West has already given Billions $$$ in aid to these “developing” nations, which kept more if them alive to breed, resulting in overpopulation! Then they insist on their right to live in these overly generous First World nations, who have low birthrates, and are responsible Earthlings!

      • anony

        If you think we of the West have given large amounts to the 3rd world, wait until the “carbon taxes” kick in.

        The Climate Change initiatives are nothing more than a gargantuan wealth transfer from 1st to 3rd world.

        • SentryattheGate

          Oh yes! During the Copenhagen Climate Change conference, the Third Worlders “jumped the gun” and let it be known that they were told they would be getting lots of $$$$ from the West! And Europe already has huge 25% VAT taxes, in addition to their already high taxation rates.

  • JohnEngelman

    Refugees bring with them the social dysfunction they flee. Uncivilized behavior is hard coded in their genome. They lack the ability to create civilized communities.

    • David Ashton

      Technically this may be an overstatement re heredity. A few refugees came here because they valued the British way of life over that in their lands of origin. However, the problems arise from cultural incompatibilities and diverse allegiances whether or not they have a genetic determination. One can see differences in average intelligence and temperament when many migrants arrive and settle in large clusters.

    • anony

      “They lack the ability to create civilized communities.”

      They also lack the ability to function effectively within a civilized community.

  • Here I am again, getting my hopes up, only for them to be deflated at some point in the next week when we find out it was all a hoax.

    “Protest against the EU’s asylum policies.” What is that supposed to mean? Do they think they’re not generous enough? Besides, refugees are supposed to go to the closest nearest stable country, not halfway across the world.

  • John Smith

    I love happy endings.

    • David Ashton

      “Blood and tears” – Lord Tebbit, who could have succeeded Thatcher as a hardline genuine patriot if the IRA had not injured him and paralyzed his wife.

  • Jason Lewis

    The sign reads “african refugees we are here we will rise” How the hell do you think the native population would react?

  • ElGringo

    Personally, I like the new look of this masterpiece. Bravo to the arsonist, er, I mean artist who touched it up.

  • Zimriel

    Given Netanyahu’s position on the topic, someone should spray a big blue Magen David on the poster (before the arson) for extra trollery. I’m just sorry I’m not there to do it myself.

  • The Dude

    You know what, it’s not my solution of choice, but sometimes you have to act like a p**** to keep your neck of the woods from being overwhelmed by Africans. Say what you will about those kinds of acts, but creating an inhospitable environment does work.

    • Speedy Steve

      Keep going until they start whining.

  • libertarian1234

    Good for whoever did this.

    I hope there’s more of it…..and soon……and often.

  • LeonNJ

    It must be so fun to be an African refugee. You get to leave your hut, go to a first world country for free, and then start doing art projects to bash the asylum laws that somehow got you here in the first place! Yippie!

  • And so the Saxon stirs…

    • anony

      We can only encourage it… .

  • Alden

    The govt. of Germany like ours gives millions of taxpayers money a year to various non
    profit. The exhibit was probably put up by one if these groups There is a lot of money to be made by creating a group like this and getting government funding

  • InAFreeCountry

    “Burn this MF down! Burn this B**ch down!”

  • Light from the East

    Chaotic destruction is just a way of normal expression of Africans.

  • carriewhite64

    The burned structure is more artistic and aesthetically pleasing than the original ugly building.

  • David Ashton

    It wasn’t Goering.

  • BlueSonicStreak

    Many Germans do speak English, though. I was friends for years online with a German girl who was reasonably fluent when we met, and flawlessly fluent after I had known her for a couple of years. She actually went to London to go to school.

  • BlueSonicStreak

    I kind of hope this is for real, and not an accident or hoax. I hope they rebuild the display so it can be burnt down again.