Prisoners leer through their bars, whispering hate on rotted breath; to men like these we are all the enemy. In the seventies, the Red Army Faction fought what it saw as Nazi influence in the government, and the encroaching horrors of unmitigated capitalism; like most young movements, they failed to see the error in violence as a political tool, or notice their own hypocrisy. I wait for a moment while the guard unlocks the door to the high security wing, built specifically for the RAF. Their members have spent longer in jail than Nazi war criminals- those who didn’t die at the end of a noose.
She's seated, and doesn't move when I enter, or look up as I sit. "Brigitte,” I pause, “I won’t say I’m your friend, because neither of use would believe it. But I will say I bear you no ill will, and my counsel is true. The court has set you free, but it’s a death sentence if you don’t appeal to the people. This is a bad time in the world to have been a terrorist. If you don’t ask the public for their forgiveness, you will be dead inside a month.”
She didn’t move, nor give notice she’d heard or understood. “You’ve been on suicide watch most of your time here, as much for your own protection; would you like me to have a pile of towels left for you?” Her eyes burned bright with sudden hate. “There; at least now I know you can still hear me- and if I may be so bold, no one with that much fire still in them wants to die. Do you believe you deserve it, then? You’ve never applied for clemency, so is that it? That perhaps this is the only way to achieve justice, to sacrifice your life as you sacrificed others to your own political ends?”
“I can’t make you do anything, and obviously telling you what to do will be useless, but my place is as your advocate, and I’ll tell you now it’s suicide. Whether you’re shot dead in the streets by some crazed person or as part of the War on Terror, or simply treated as a leper for the rest of your days. You've been cleared by a doctor as no longer a threat to society, so whether you plan social martyrdom or physical- it all ends the same. Schleyer’s son called your release a perversion of justice, but so is this. This isn’t justice, not even if you offer yourself up to reset some karmic balance; it’s murder, and it’s vengeance, and it's wrong.”