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Bring on the haters: the show that’s getting laughs out of Islamophobia


What do you do if your inbox is clogged up with anti-Muslim hate mail? Turn it into a cabaret show. Daryl Lindsey reports from Berlin on a strangely joyful evening of horrendous abuse

When it comes to you Muslims,” Hasnain Kazim tells the audience, “we Germans are going to pick up where we left off with the Jews. It would please me if the first time we meet is when your smoke is rising out of the chimney.”

Under normal circumstances, such bile delivered from a Berlin stage would be greeted with shrieks of horror. But Kazim, a 40-year-old journalist with Spiegel Online, is treated to rollicking laughter and applause instead. This, after all, is Hate Poetry night in Berlin, an opportunity for a troupe of German journalists, all of whom have vaguely Muslim-sounding names, to read out some of the more creatively despicable messages clogging up their inboxes.

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