May 26, 2023 | 10:50 p.m.
British rocker Roger Waters defended himself on Friday after German police opened an investigation into the Pink Floyd co-founder for the Nazi-style costume he wore at a concert in Berlin last week.
“We are investigating suspicions of incitement to public hatred because clothing worn on stage could be used to glorify or justify the Nazi regime, thereby disturbing the public peace,” said Berlin police spokesman Martin. Halweg.
Waters donned a long black coat, black gloves and black sunglasses – complete with a red armband – during part of his May 17 performance in which he fired an imitation machine gun into the crowd as he was flanked by men dressed in military insignia.
“The clothes look like an SS officer’s clothes,” Halweg said.
The 79-year-old defended his choice of costume and said it was a clear statement “in opposition to fascism, injustice, bigotry in all its forms”.
“My recent performance in Berlin has drawn bad faith attacks from those who want to smear me and silence me because they disagree with my political views and moral principles,” he said in a statement.
“Attempts to present these elements as something else are misleading and politically motivated. The portrayal of an unhinged fascist demagogue has been a feature of my shows since Pink Floyd’s ‘The Wall’ in 1980.”
Dozens of Twitter users rushed to castigate the rocker, including the State of Israel.
“Hello everyone except Roger Waters who spent the evening in Berlin (Yes Berlin) desecrating the memory of Anne Frank and the 6 million Jews murdered in the Holocaust,” he wrote.
Other German cities, including Munich, Frankfurt and Cologne, have tried to cancel Waters’ concerts after Jewish groups accused him of anti-Semitism for his support of Palestine.
Earlier this year, the city of Frankfurt called Waters “one of the world’s best-known anti-Semites,” according to Billboard.
The “Wish You Were Here” singer denied the charges on Friday and claimed he was using his platform to oppose “authoritarianism and oppression.”
“When I was a child after the war, the name Anne Frank was often spoken in our house, she became a permanent reminder of what happens when fascism is left unchecked. My parents fought the Nazis for World War II, my father paying the ultimate price,” he said.
“Whatever the consequences of the attacks on me, I will continue to condemn injustice and all who perpetuate it.”
Efforts to stop his performances across Germany were unsuccessful – the final date for the tour in the country is scheduled for May 28 in Frankfurt.
With post son