Sunday, September 6, 2009

Protest against nuclear power in Berlin!

On Saturday I took a bus to Berlin with Greens from around Rheinland-Pfalz to protest nuclear power. Germany's 20 or so nuclear power plants are set to be decommissioned in the 2020s, but the conservative CDU (Christian Democrats) and FDP (Free Democrats) partys want to extend the deadline. Right now the CDU is in power, and the FDP is the third most powerful party in the German Bundestag. About 40,000 people took part in the protest, which wound its way through the middle of Berlin, around the Brandenburg Gate and the Reichstag. It was amazing! Not only was it really energizing, but I got to see some of the German Greens' top candidates.
Here's me in front of a HUGE line of tractors that were part of the protest. It stretched all the way down the entire street from the Brandenburg Gate to the Victory Column. My flag reads: Nuclear Power? No thanks! in German.This is the walking part of the protest along the Spree River. The girl who is looking backwards with the green flag is my host-sister Laura.
These are some the leaders of the German Greens. The guy in the green Hoody is Jürgen Trittin, former environmental minister and leader of the Greens in the German parliament. The woman next to him is Renate Künast, also a former minister and member of parliament. Their sign reads: "Black-Yellow? No thanks!" Black is the color of the CDU and yellow the FDP. It's possible that the two parties could form a coalition if the both do well on election day, which is Sept. 27. But that probably won't happen, because the CDU has already lost a lot of seats in a few provincial elections which took place last week.This the protest as it makes its way past the Brandenburg Gate.I just had to take a picture of this guy! His sign says: "I am the biggest. Radioactivity improved me. Thanks!!"To cap off a very exciting day, as we took a break while driving back we were greeted by a stunning rainbow.


  1. Wow Mark, that looks amazing! Must have been really fun and exciting. Have you had a chance to explore Berlin much yet?

    I bet you're having a blast getting to speak German all the time!

  2. Unfortunately I could only walk around Berlin for about an hour or so, so I just saw the Reichstag and the Brandenburg gate very quickly. Of course I'm speaking German all the time. A lot of Germans I talk to complement me on my German skills which is of course awesome to hear.