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Extra Editions - Helmut Schmidt Case

25th January 2008
Former German Chancellor Helmut Schmidt, impassioned in his resistance to health fascism, is now formally charged for assault and battery for the crime of smoking a cigarette. His wife Hannelore (called "Loki") is likewise under investigation and may also be charged. 27 January - Update reports.

The charges are the collaborative work of anti-tobacco operatives in Wiesbaden and Hamburg's public prosecutor. The precise fascism Schmidt has publicly implored against is now set directly against him. The demand, as ever, is for absolute obedience. The prosecutor explains that the full extent of the law, including charges of "assault and battery" (alternatively translated as "causing grievous bodily harm"), and potential imprisonment, could be deferred only provided that Schmidt adhere strictly to all anti-smoker edicts in the future. Similar charges against Mrs. Schmidt are also being considered pending further investigation. We publish this story as an "extra" on Friday 25 January. It has only just broken in Europe within the hour as we write. The link at the bottom of this page is from Agence France Presse in the French language. The tone of the piece adheres to media policy in demeaning the chancellor and his wife while saluting the Reich. Here is a close translation in English:

Hooked on cigarettes, former Chancellor Schmidt nabbed by justice

Berlin (AFP) — Former German Chancellor Helmut Schmidt, rarely seen without a cigarette between his lips, is the subject of court proceedings for having smoked in a public place, despite anti-tobacco laws, a judicial source has told us on Friday.

Mister Schmidt, eighty-nine years old, and his wife Hannelore are the subjects of a preliminary inquiry for "violation of tobacco law" and "assault and battery", following an official complaint filed by the heads of an anti-tobacco association in Wiesbaden (center-west), as explained to Agence France Presse by Hamburg (north) public prosecutor Rüdiger Bagger, confirming information reported in the popular journal Bild.

The legal trouble dates from January first of this year, when Mister Schmidt (Social Democratic Chancellor from 1974 to 1982) was photographed in the act of smoking at a Hamburg theatre, in spite of a new prohibition on smoking in public which had come into force in the city.

Mister Bagger suggested that prosecutions for "assault and battery", provided in the criminal code for a case of "endangering the health of others", could be abandoned in the short term, but recidivism by Schmidt or his wife would subject them to financial penalty.

Of course the Schmidts, man and wife, are famously addicted to cigarettes. A few years back, Mrs. Schmidt propounded that smoking was "good for the brain."

Legislation increasing smoking restrictions took effect in most regions of Germany on the first of January, which included in particular strict non-smoking areas in bars and restaurants. Germany has long been at the end of the train in this regard, compared to the other great nations of Europe.

We applaud the principles and furious resistance of Helmut Schmidt. We encourage him and his brainy wife to face down fascism in this situation with the same righteous determination they have shown in the past and we are confident they will do so.

Update 25 January: The French article links appear at bottom this page. A similar but more flippant article in English published by Der Spiegel has also appeared: (link) (stored).

Update 27 January: Based on widening European press coverage, and the investigations of our own German correspondents, this story seems to be playing out unsurprisingly. The big threat of an assault charge was apparently broached for its headline-generating propaganda value and actual prosecution along these lines is not to be expected. The purpose of the anti-smoker activists and their sympathizers at the office of the public prosecutor was essentially a very public intimidation of the venerated public statesman and his wife.

Disgust at the tactic has also been expressed by prosecutors and other officials of German law enforcement. The willingness to so threaten the much beloved elderly couple is not to be taken lightly. Savage regimentation of the masses has been demanded by Healthist officials of the World Health Organization and European Union and will be eagerly implemented by many national and local tyrants. The besieged common man may not receive headlines but he may get jail time.

Numerous recent articles have quoted Helmut and Loki Schmidt regarding their long love of tobacco and unwillingness to forgo it under the strictures of the new Reich. The couple has not however made any direct comment on this episode so far. These are two people who have lived long and seen much, including the Nazi era, when the eugenics philosophy underpinning today's Healthism had another heyday, including fanatical anti-smoking, then as now. They know there can be no discussion with, but only destruction of, such mindless fanaticism.

We applaud these old warriors, wish them well, and know they will continue resisting fascism. The theatre, where they were recently "caught," was in fact a routine locale for their elegant defiance of anti-smoking (link) (stored). The Schmidts shall not be intimidated. None of us shall be intimidated. Freedom to choose and freedom to live as one chooses is not going to be ceded to hysterical tyrants. The destruction of Healthist fanaticism shall be achieved through effective organization, rampant defiance, planned subversion, and massive force. We have had more than enough. The time is here.

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