A Statement and a Poem for Christa Eckes

christa_eckesFormer RAF member Christa Eckes died of cancer on Wednesday, May 23, in Karlsruhe, Germany. (To read more about Christa, click here.) The following is a statement by Ronald Augustin and a poem by Gisela Dutzi, regarding their comrade and friend:


christa and i, we failed to meet each other on several occasions.  when i was supposed to see her for the first time, me illegal she still legal, i was arrested on the way to the meeting with her.  shortly after, in the autumn of 1973, she joined the raf but in turn was arrested only few months later.  i then first got to know her through our common struggle against the prison conditions only.

a phrase of hers on that was – “we ‘maintain’ our fighting force by the fact that, also in here, we don’t give up our intention to put something in motion against them – it’s also because of that that we are fighting against the isolation.”

when i was released from prison in 1980, she was still inside, and when she was released almost two years later, i was again somewhere else.  another two years later she was again in prison, a second time for eight years.

only ten years ago now we got to see each other in the real.  what has struck me about her since is that, of all those of us from the raf who are still around, she has been one of the clearest heads.  like hardly anyone else, christa was able to summarize, in one go and quite unexpectedly, a complex situation and provide a political analysis of it.

i still cannot grasp how and how fast disease struck her in these past few months – her death is tearing a huge hole in what connected us, those who have been her friends, throughout the years.

another of christa’s constant factors was her sincerity.  as always open, simple and generous, accessible and yes, repeatedly this unrepressable smile in the corner of her lips.  a smile which perhaps more than anything else expresses that she – in a world of material and intellectual poverty – never lost faith in our struggle for a human life.



likes awful synthetic biker’s pants
long walks, during which she chased us through fields and forests,
she loved castles and other absurd things
egg salat in quantities
she lived unconditional friendships
she never complained and that is not an exaggeration!
when she got something wrong,
she could be very self critical,
taboos, on what was discussed, didn’t exist anymore,
we still wanted to travel a lot, spend time together,
she was so curious about everything,
notorious for her readiness to take risks,
unconditionally solidary, and if she could have, preferably for the entire planet….and sometimes up to self-sacrifice…
sharp, gruff, exact, sometimes tough,
in the past few months she learnt how she was appreciated,
all around her who loved her,
that’s where relationships showed that she had helped build,
in the past few months softer, she could now also accept to receive, to have a good time….
in the past few months absolutely present
and clear and straightforward without any illusion on her situation.
a situation she determined, literally, until the end.

i don’t know how life can go on without her,
without a phone call or another – shall we meet, when?
without her reliability, looking for solutions, tackling things,
without her