election. Petia proved to be a help, for at one of
the last rallies, in Waldshut on September 27, when Serge, two friends, and I
were handing out pamphlets in the crowd that had come to hear Kiesinger, a
woman with an ice cream cone ran up and threw the ice cream in my face,
temporarily blinding me. Then she started hitting me with her fists. Petia
began to jump and bark, attracting Serge's attention. Serge dropped his
pamphlets and pulled the woman off me. |
Albruck, Waldshut, Dorgezn,
Unterbruckringen, Trangen, Sackingen, Gorwihl, Hochsal . . . all day long the
names of the villages where Kiesinger stopped and where we staged
demonstrations and passed out our pamphlets flew past.
and I were the only ones of our party in the front rows where, of course, we
kept interrupting Kiesinger. When we shouted "Willy Brandt for Chancellor,"
together with the socialists who took the risk of coming to Christian
Democratic rallies, the reporters were astonished and the Christian Democrats
were very angry.
"You're ADF people. You have no right to campaign for
"Better to give your votes to Brandt's SPD than to waste them
on the ADF."
September 28. Election day. The results will soon
be in. I went straight from Waldshut to Bonn with Serge and Petia, for as a
candidate I was entitled to be present in the Assembly for the vote counting. I
got in, but not without some trouble, and two or three of the security men
stuck right beside me for fear of a disturbance.
Reporters also stuck
close by, asking for my predictions. I told them frankly that my party, the
ADF, would not get more than one percent of the vote.
The ADF officials
were cool. They had not expected to see me there. They were still optimistic,
so when the first returns were announced, they left without even saying
That night the television coverage began with a shot of the
Bundestag, and the newscaster pointed me out as: "Beate Klarsfeld, this
evening's guest of honor."
I felt a hand on my shoulder. It was the
Bonn police chief, who apologized that he couldn't share my politics but
offered his "personal congratulations" for my "courage." Several Christian
Democratic officials said the same thing to me that evening. I have