Things got lit in Hamburg over the last week or so. Really lit.
It seems that police in Hamburg are having a hard time with the G20 summit, which is hosted by the city this year.
Things got off to a rocky start before the meeting even got underway, when police from all over Germany went to the city to offer assistance to local cops for the meeting.
It seems the Berlin police contingent decided it was a great time to have a party — complete with public sex, public urination, and drinking until the wee hours — and were summarily sent back to where they came from.
This was not a great omen for things to come.
Whether the Berlin cops anticipated that the summit would be a raucous affair, or were simply resigned to the fact that police would inevitably fail to contain Germany’s famous contingent of antifa protesters, they were right either way.
As with any G20 meeting, the gathering attracted protesters of all stripes. And as for those protesters who were intent on damaging property, well … let’s just say they managed to set more than a few cars on fire.
How many is “a few” in this case?
To get an idea, check out the footage of the aftermath. In a stunning clip posted to Youtube, a citizen journalist managed to capture video of a jaw-dropping number of cars set ablaze.
Politically-motivated car torchings are not unusual in Germany, particularly in Berlin, where there is a strong tradition of anarchism and left-wing activism. The city is home to numerous communes and collectives, but there are signs that the Berlin police are increasingly cracking down on this phenomenon, including a recent eviction of one of the city’s most famous collectives, Friedel54:
For a country that has benefitted in many ways from globalization, it seems that a significant number of Germans are ambivalent regarding its consequences.
Would Australia see this sort of response if it hosts a G20 summit in the coming years? Maybe this specialization in car-torching is a European phenomenon. But as global inequality continues to reach record-breaking heights, expect to see more of this kind of thing at gatherings of global political elites.