Berlin Police Plan to Protect Holocaust Memorial After Revelers Desecrate It

Video showing drunken youth urinating on iconic site on New Year's Eve prompts official response.

The Associated Press
The Associated Press
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The Associated Press
The Associated Press

Berlin police say they are considering additional security for Germany's main Holocaust memorial after an online video appeared to show New Year's revelers urinating on the site last week.

The YouTube video appears to show drunken partygoers relieving themselves and launching fireworks from among the 2,711 concrete blocks commemorating the 6 million Jews killed by the Nazis.

The site in the heart of Berlin is close to the Brandenburg Gate where hundreds of thousands of people traditionally ring in the New Year.

Police spokesman Thomas Neuendorf said Monday that the site was specifically designed to be open to the public, but that a fence could be erected around it during big events.

Jenifer Stolz, a spokeswoman for the foundation that maintains the memorial, says a temporary barrier would be acceptable.

Peter Eisenman, the Jewish American architect who designed the memorial, rejected having tight security around the memorial when it opened, according to reports.

Years ago, he said it would not disturb him if the memorial became a target for graffiti artists. In an interview with German weekly news magazine Stern, Eisenman said, "there are these destructive feelings once in a while...but we cannot keep everything squeaky clean. That would be the same behavior as in the 1930s."

Holocaust memorial in BerlinCredit: AP