- The Washington Times - Sunday, December 2, 2001

BERLIN (Agence France-Presse) Thousands of neo-Nazis held their biggest demonstration in Berlin since the end of World War II yesterday, rallying to challenge a public exhibition claiming the German army had been involved in wartime Nazi atrocities.
Police stopped the neo-Nazis parading through Berlin's traditional Jewish quarter following protests by the mayor and other leading personalities of the German capital.
Police also managed to prevent a confrontation between neo-Nazis and anti-Nazis, using water cannon and tear gas grenades against anti-Nazi militants protesting the march by some 3,500 Nazi sympathizers who had arrived in special trains from all over the country.
The exhibition, asserting that the Wehrmacht had taken part in war crimes, opened earlier in the week in the Jewish district, now a ghost of what it once was.
Tens of thousands of Berlin Jews were among the millions whom the Nazis deported to concentration camps and death during the Third Reich.
The neo-Nazi rally was organized by the National Democratic Party (NPD) a German fringe party on the extreme right, which Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder's government wants banned because of its extremist views.
Berlin's vestigial Jewish community reacted with fury, and anti-racist organizations intervened forcefully to stop the march through the Jewish district.
Berlin's Social Democrat Mayor Klaus Wowereit was among the many political and cultural personalities to protest.
Yesterday Mr. Wowereit was among those who visited the Wehrmacht exhibition.
But Berlin police chief Gerd Neubeck, who mobilized some 4,000 of his men to maintain order, said there had never been any intention of allowing the neo-Nazis into the Jewish quarter.


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