This issue continues to entertain. The organizers of the award sued against the event (which Senator Lederer called "a fair for conspiracy believers and tinfoil hats") at the Babylon being cancelled, and won in court; so it will take place in the originally planned venue, with British-Jewish pro-Palestinian jazz musician-activist Gilad Atzmon providing the soundtrack. Meanwhile lines are being drawn and media on the radical left and the adjacent nutbag continuum are taking positions; former official SED daily "Neues Deutschland" supports Lederer, as does "Friedensdemo-Watch", a group critical to the pro-Russian "peace vigils" around activist Jutta Ditfurth who left the Greens in 1991 because they had become too mainstream for her - they have called for a counter-demonstration to the protest by Jebsen supporters before the Left Party HQ.
In the pro-Jebsen camp we have Oskar Lafontaine, the godfather of the West German loon wing in the Left Party, the Querfront online magazine "Rubikon", and RT Deutsch; the latter just had an opinion article deploring the decay of political discussion and freedom of opinion in Germany being visible in this case by none other than Rainer Rupp, better known by his codename "Topaz" when he worked as a spy for the HVA of the Stasi at SHAPE. I can hardly wait for Thursday to roll around and see all these guys clash.
So after all the excitement, just before the award was to go down yesterday Jebsen announced that he wouldn't come to accept it. In a long-winded interview statement on RT Deutsch he said it was due to attention shifting from journalism to the artists like Gilad Atzmon and Dieter Dehm attending, and the way the presence of controversial participants was being used against him; in passing, and more directly in a meandering piece by "Rubikon", it also becomes clear that the various factions in the nutbag continuum all wanted to get their representants in, and nobody was prepared to yield, least of all the organizers to Jebsen's own wishes. Which is of course business as usual among fringebats. The center of the controversy seems to have been Atzmon, who was ultimately banned by the "Babylon" theater to enter their premises.
Jebsen initially said he would still speak at the protest before the Left Party HQ, but it turned out to be only an audio message of his being played. The demonstration unsurprisingly then became mostly anti-Israel, with another prominent Jewish anti-Zionist, Evelyn Hecht-Galinski (daughter of former Central Council of the Jews in Germany chairman Heinz Galinski and founder of the German chapter of the "Jewish Voice for a Just Peace in the Middle East"), stating that it was a legal right of protesters to burn Israeli flags as long as "the Jewish state was occupying Palestine". This was in reference to a current debate following such flag burnings during Muslim demonstrations against Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as the Israeli capital before the US embassy in Berlin this week. Burning foreign flags is currently legal unless they are on official display as national insignia by domestic or foreign authorities like embassies. Afterwards the Central Council of the Jews demanded to outlaw burning the Israeli flag, which in this selective way would likely be an unconstitutional special law; others have proposed to ban burning of foreign flags in general. Of course that would be a further limitation of free speech, though.