For the magazine Tichys Einblick (TE) Zara Riffler reports:
The new talk show “Five Souls” takes place on YouTube and Instagram to develop “new offerings for the digital world”, according to the SWR broadcasting company. The three hosts, Hadnet Tesfai, Natasha Kimberly and Thelma Buabeng, invite two guests to each episode “to talk about what’s on the minds of 30- to 40-year-olds. Whether it’s family, children, love, sex or money, “Five Souls” doesn’t mince words,” according to Southwest German Radio (“SWR”).
But already the first show goes in a completely different direction of “diversity”. The three hosts invited Feyza-Yasmin Ayhan, also known under the stage name “Yasmin Poesy”. In 2015, Yasmin Ayhan performed as a poetry slammer at an event organised by the organisation “German Youth for Palestine” (DJP), which took place in the Dar as-Salam Mosque. This event was specifically planned on “Jerusalem Day”; the day is explicitly mentioned in the video. Jerusalem Day (Yom Yerushalayim) is an Israeli holiday on which the Jewish population of Israel celebrates the reunification of the city of Jerusalem. Yasmin Ayhan performed a poetry slam in this mosque, which must be judged as Israel-related anti-Semitism:
“This land can never be separated from its people. It is our sacred land. There is no one who can deny these miracles, no one who can counter when I say Palastine deserves freedom (…) when I say a two-state solution is not fair. We don’t just want peace, we want justice. (…) We want our country to be truly united again. (…) The Palestinian picks up a stone, the Palestinian must be tired of life?(…) The Palestinians are a people who are fighting, not tired of life, but proud. That which Israel has destroyed in Palestine will not die and that which Israel has built in Palestine will not survive for a second.”
The last sentence in particular makes it clear that Yasmin Ayhan is clearly spreading hatred of Israel and Israel-related anti-Semitism. It resembles a call for the Palestinians to fight the Israelis, the Jewish people – violently. That what Israel has built “in Palestine” will not survive for a second is a threat. This is nothing other than anti-Semitism and a call for violence.
The DJP is considered an organisation of Hamas supporters and is close to the “Palestinian Community in Germany” (PGD), which is also widely assessed as an organisation of Hamas supporters. The Dar as-Salam mosque is run by the association “Neuköllner Begegnungsstätte” (NBS), which is monitored by the Office for the Protection of the Constitution and is considered close to the Muslim Brotherhood. The mosque, which is considered controversial by experts, has already tried to take legal action against the Office for the Protection of the Constitution; although it is no longer mentioned in the report, it continues to be observed on suspicion of legalistic Islamism. Hamas” is an Islamist, Palestinian terrorist organisation that wants to wipe out the state of Israel. It is a branch of the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood whose ideology is deeply anti-Semitic.
The video of Ayhan’s performance has been publicly viewable on the internet since 2015. The Southwest German Radio (SWR), the second largest broadcaster of the German public broadcaster ARD, could have known about this beforehand. But it is not only this anti-Semitic appearance that is causing great displeasure. Yasmin Ayhan makes no secret of her sympathies for organisations that show a closeness to the Islamist and Hamas-affiliated political spectrum. On the contrary. If you have a look at her Instagram profile, “Yasmin Poesy” has already mentioned the website of the aid organisation “Islamic Relief” in her profile. She has launched her own appeal for donations on the Islamic Relief website.
The aid organisation Islamic Relief has been classified as a Hamas funding system by the Israeli Ministry of Defence since 2014 and is legally considered a terrorist organisation in Israel. Islamic Relief in Germany and its parent organisation Islamic Relief Worldwide have “significant personnel connections” to the Muslim Brotherhood or organisations close to it, according to the German government.
TE magazine found other well-known people with a wide public impact who were promoting Islamic Relief on Instagram just like Yasmin Ayhan – at the same time – with stories about the first meeting in a project office and visits to refugee camps. There is a picture at that time posted by Islamic Relief that talks about “Our team with Yasmin Poesy (…) are in Kenya and will tell you about our projects and donations on the ground!” This sounds like a promotional team for the controversial aid organisation. A young Muslim actress from Germany wrote on Instagram: “We are now on our way to Dadaab, where we will visit the second largest refugee camp in the world in sha Allah [God willing]. I’m taking you with me so you can see exactly where your donations are going”.
The suspicion could arise at this point that these people, as a “team”, have been part of a strategic advertising campaign by Islamic Relief to dispel the suspicion that the money is not only being given to people in need of help, but also presumably to the terrorist organisation Hamas, which Israel has accused it of. The Muslim actress and others who have been identified explain and show exactly what is in the food parcels to be donated. They use the same hashtags and record their journey in an almost identical way. It sounds like all these people have been given the same screenplay. The people’s Instagram stories clearly fit into a pattern. One of these people is named as a “volunteer” in a report (2020) by Islamic Relief.
Anti-Semitic posts by Ayhan can also be found on Instagram. She repeatedly posts negative rants against “Zionists”. In an Instagram post, she expressed delight that Tarek Bae was “not funded by any Zionists” who were “just media makers with a load of money”. This can be interpreted as both anti-Zionist and social anti-Semitism. The journalist Tarik Bae is a former employee of the “Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research” (SETA), which is a corporate think tank of the Turkish ruling party AKP and President Erdogan. SETA received public attention in 2019 when they published the EU co-financed “European Islamophobia Reports”, which specifically denounced European journalists, academics and politicians as “Islamophobic” in order to deligitimise their criticism of Islam and political-Islamic structures and denigrate them as “anti-Muslim racism”.
It is not the first time that the public broadcaster has included Yasmin Ayhan in its programmes without checking the person. In the documentary by the German public broadcaster West German Broadcasting (WDR) ” My head. My Veil”, Ayhan was a main protagonist. The fact that Ayhan appears in the milieu of the “Neukölner Begegnungsstätte”, the ” German Youth for Palestine” and “Islamic Relief” raises the suspicion that she herself could advocate a politically influenced Islam. This would question her motives for wearing a headscarf. Now, a documentary is primarily meant to show multiple sides and positions. However, the context concerning Yasmin Ayhan and other people is not given to the audience. Instead, Ayhan appears overall as a victim of defamation because of her headscarf. The victims of her widespread anti-Semitism, on the other hand, seem to be irrelevant.