Friday, 12 February 2016

Old Revolutionaries, New Criminals

Whatever happens to old revolutionaries?

Well they can of course become el Presidente if they win (See Cuba). Or they can become el Presidente if they join the democratic side (See Uruguay).

But in the case of the old Red Army Faction (aka the Baader-Meinhof gang) of West Germany you can simply become armed robbers. With the "urban guerilla project" declared as ended in 1998 (they had lost their struggle in the 80's), they apparently 'retired'. Uncaught, but no longer active and that was assumed to be that ....

Red Army Faction Being Hunted Anew

However pension plans amongst revolutionary movements are apparently very poor. So it's perhaps no surprise that last June shots were fired in a Bremen supermarket car park, an armoured car stopped, but the three bandits were unable to open its doors. They fled in a ford focus .....

The elderly raiders were identified from the fingerprints they left both at the scene and on the getaway car (sloppy in itself), and the DNA gleaned was shown to be from three ex-RAF faction members (Burkhard Garweg, Daniela Klette and Ernst-Volker Staub). Two of whom are in their late 50's, and believed to have few funds to live off. This is apparently the second such raid by these three ... although the last was way back in 1999.

Old Revolutionaries apparently don't fade away, they turn into the common criminals they often were.


  1. You missed out a bunch of old revolutionaries nearer to home. Corbyn, Abbot, et al.

    1. Your on the button there and I admit that I never thought of that angle. Thanks for the comment.

  2. In the USA the 1818 Revolutionary War Pension Act combined the features of a pension plan and welfare benefits for former revolutionaries from the War of Independence. So at least there was a plan for old revolutionaries.

    1. Hi Tanner. I am put in my place. There are obviously retirement plans for old revolutionaries (when they win). Cuba no doubt has something similar. Thanks for the pertinent comment.


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