Roger Waters is under investigation by German police for “incitement of the people” after wearing a satirical, Nazi-style costume on stage in Berlin, Reuters reports. The outfit was based on the fictional fascist officer Pink, whom Bob Geldof played in Pink Floyd’s 1982 film The Wall, a satirical critique of a society’s descent into fascism. Though Waters’ outfit did not explicitly replicate Nazi uniforms, which are illegal in Germany, police said it was “capable of violating the dignity of the victims, as well as approving, glorifying or justifying the violent and arbitrary rule of the Nazi regime in a way that disrupts public peace.” Waters’ representatives did not respond to a request for comment.
Waters, an outspoken critic of Zionism and Israel, faced political opposition to his German tour. Frankfurt’s local government attempted to ban his concert in the city, alleging that Waters’ “persistent anti-Israel behavior” amounted to antisemitism. Officials noted that some of the musician’s shows had incorporated a pig-shaped balloon adorned with the Star of David and various corporate logos. A court overturned the ban, on the basis that the performances can be “viewed as a work of art” and that Waters “did not glorify or relativize the crimes of the Nazis or identify with Nazi racist ideology.” Waters is scheduled to play in Frankfurt on Sunday, May 28.
UPDATE 5/27: On Friday evening (May 26), Waters shared the following statement on social media: