Following Deadly Knife Attack by Migrant, Berlin Public Broadcaster Fires Journalist for Criticizing Somalia
John Cody, Remix, October 23, 2022
Two Germans lost their lives at the hands of a Somali migrant in the quiet German city of Ludwigshafen this week, but now a journalist who grew up 800 meters from where the stabbing took place has lost his job after calling Somalia “a shithole country.”
“Somalia is a shithole country with Stone Age culture. When a migrant from Somalia stabs two people and injures two others, that’s a problem. When this happens 800 meters from your parents, in the place where you grew up, it’s shocking,” wrote former RBB journalist Jan A. Karon, who was born in Poland but grew up in Germany.
The murder, which happened on Monday, involved a Somali man rampaging through the city, only to attack and stab two individuals to death, which included cutting off one of the victim’s hands. Although the Somali man screamed, “Allauh Akbar,” during the attack, police say the motive of the attack remains unclear.
Shortly after Karon’s post criticizing Somalia, a left-wing “anti-racism” activist, Jasmina Kuhnke labeled Karon’s tweet as “hate speech” and wrote to RBB’s Twitter feed demanding consequences for the 30-year-old employee’s statement. RBB quickly responded, writing, “We understand and share the criticism of the statements.” The production company, which is a subdivision of RBB and which Karon directly works for, also wrote they are “in discussions about possible consequences,” adding that they condemn “any form of racism.”
In response, the prominent lawyer Joachim Steinhöfel got involved in the debate and sharply criticized RBB for “trumpeting in front of the entire public such contractual and labor law issues without hearing the person concerned here.”
Other journalists also stuck up for Karon. Julia Ruhs, a colleague from Bayerischer Rundfunk, wrote to RBB: “A tweet like this from an employee is enough to want to draw conclusions? Somalia is a country with assassinations, raids, and terrorism. Saying that clearly doesn’t have to be racism. Incidentally, for Jasmina Kuhnke, there is a lot of ‘baiting.’”
Kuhnke is well-known for her anti-racist activism and has been involved with trying to ban “right-wing publishers” from the Frankfurt Book Fair.
Karon was also suspended on Twitter for his original tweet, but his suspension was lifted shortly thereafter, with the native Pole writing, “The tweet does not violate applicable law and does not constitute a criminal offense. Twitter responded within an hour of @Steinhoefel’s admonishment. My account was also unlocked. A victory for freedom of expression.”
Despite the campaign to fire Karon, he did not back down, writing, “If professional outraged people now want to tell me that I’m right-wing, racist, or xenophobic because I don’t want to keep quiet about this, I don’t care. These individual cases now happen every day across Germany.”
Karon’s claims are backed up by data. Germany is plagued by 50 knife crimes a day, the vast majority of which are committed by migrants. In addition, as Remix News reported, Somalian migrants are often poorly integrated into German society and have been involved in a number of high-profile knife attacks. Notably, a Somali migrant stabbed three women to death last year in the German city of Würzburg, including a mother who died trying to shield her daughter from the attacker. The daughter reportedly ran screaming for help through the Woolworth department store covered in her own mother’s blood. Despite the man screaming “Allahu Akbar” during that attack as well and telling investigators that he “achieved Jihad,” an Islamic motive was ruled out. Instead, the man was deemed to have “psychiatric issues,” enabling him to avoid prison time.
In another twist in the most recent knife attack, evidence appears to point to the fact that the 25-year-old suspect is not actually 25 years old.
“It appears the case with the Somali man arrested for the double murder is getting more and more interesting: According to Spiegel, the Somali from Ludwigshafen is said to have shouted “Allahu Akbar” before committing the crime. According to BILD, the 25-year-old is the father of a 13-year-old daughter, which suggests that he may not even be 25 years old,” wrote Karon on Twitter.