SOLVED: The riddle of why Schäuble assailant Dieter Kaufmann became an unperson…and what really happened to him later


On October 22nd – ten days after Dieter Kaufmann’s failed assassination attempt on Wolfgang Schäuble in 1990 – Der Spiegel ran a piece headed ‘Warning signs were overlooked’ in relation to the attacker’s mental health. You could say that’s the understatement of the millennium, but for me the piece is most interesting in the categorical way that eminent psychiatry professor Islaefener of the Mannheim Psychiatric Unit described the danger of people with Kaufmann’s condition.

Depicting the gunman as representing “a particularly high risk to society”, Islaefener added that while some dopamine-enhancing drugs worked on some people with schizophrenia, “they can do little to erase the underlying propensity to violence that often accompanies the condition”. The professor continued, “…there is an absence of compassion in this man and a clear inability to control his own behaviour. To be blunt, the risk of the man committing another act of violence is in the high percentage digits”.

What Islaefener did here was successfully predict the full nature of Dieter Kaufmann’s personality in terms of psychopathy and paranoia – before any thorough examination of him had been undertaken. It seems like the prof knew his stuff.

Yet 14 years later, it seems, this patient was released back into the community….and then disappeared.

The piece is also useful in, at last, offering some information about Kaufmann’s life before the Schäuble incident. He had, it seems, always struggled with learning difficulties at school, and found it impossible when older to hold down any job. But a 2009 Spiegel retrospective on the murder attempt (again, almost information-free) refers to him as ‘a 36 year old surveyor’s assistant’. So he did have a job, and it was a professional one. Again, there is zero information about Kaufmann’s fate.

This professional background marries well with a more informative piece I finally found in the archives of an obscure German website about killers and assassins called ‘Dark Days’. Dieter Kaufmann grew up in Baden Appenweier, where his father served as mayor. He didn’t learn to walk until the age of three years, and as an adult, he led the life of a druggy vagabond, travelling to North Africa, Afghanistan and Iraq.

Once back home, he further experimented with drugs, opened a pub and lived with a prostitute. His drug use worsened Dieter’s brain condition, and in 1981 he was diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic.

Yet he was soon released, reverting immediately to his peripatetic drug-dealer lifestyle. During a trip to Spain in 1982, he was caught in possession of 20 kilos of hashish, for which he was sentenced to five and a half years in Mannheim prison.

There he was treated with psychotropic drugs, and again in 1986 released on parole. Why remains a question the German psychiatric profession needs to answer, because within weeks his deranged paranoia and incessant bombarding of the media was once more apparent. By now he believed Helmut Kohl to be Adolf Hitler.

At his trial (no record of which survives on the internet) Kaufmann was diagnosed as ‘a paranoid hallucinatory schizophrenic’ – but his psychopathic tendencies were not mentioned. Sentenced to be ‘detained indefinitely’, Dieter Kaufmann ‘was treated with drugs which produced a significant improvement in his condition’ – contradicting completely the opinion of Professor Islaefener. This is understandable up to a point: drug advances in the treatment of paranoid schizophrenics have been significant since his day. But the violent psychopathic tendency is still, in 2015, an impossible condition to medicate. Moors murderer Ian Brady, for example, remains under close guard in Broadmoor 55 years after his misdeeds; and his equally pyschopathic partner Myra Hindley was still scheming mendaciously for release right up until her death.

But only on the Dark Days website is there, finally, an account of what happened to Dieter Kaufmann. In 1995, five years to the day after the assassination attempt, Kaufmann apologised in writing to Wolfgang Schäuble, attesting that he could no longer understand how he could have done such a thing. Dieter Kaufmann also went on national radio to ask for Schäuble’s forgiveness.

This is classically manipulative psychopathic behaviour, and mirrors exactly the cunning displayed by Myra Hindley in capitalising on media awareness of a supposed ‘rehabilitation’: Kaufmann chose the date to maximise media coverage. Indeed, in all of his rare references to the attacker over the last 25 years, Wolfgang Schäuble has only ever used the word ‘psychopath’ to describe the assailant. During the 1995 flurry of publicity, typically Schäuble declared himself “not terribly impressed” with the apology, adding that he did not have “too much sympathy for the man”.

And herein, I suspect, lies the clue to why Kaufmann’s fate has been erased from all mainstream internet archives. Clearly ruffled by Kaufmann’s ruse, Wolfgang Schäuble afterwards determined that anyone trying to help Dieter Kaufmann would be spared every scintilla of assistance in so doing.

In fact, one will only stumble upon Kaufmann’s apparent whereabouts by digging through references to assassins, Mannheim prison, Mayors of Baden Apperweier and so forth. As indeed I eventually did: Dieter Kaufmann was not ‘released’ after all in 2004: for the past eleven years, he has been living in a “ heavily supervised residence” he shares with another patient. He is still, by the way, undergoing care. He will never be released.


The riddle – why release a dangerous psychopath and then erase all easy access to what happened next? – is thus solved. He wasn’t released at all. He has been tucked away out of sight and all maintream media references to him online have been both discouraged and expurgated. But if your response is “nothing to see here”, then you are missing the point of both this and yesterday’s Part 1 post about the fate of Dieter Kaufmann.

In the immediate aftermath of Kaufmann’s ‘release’ in 2004, Wolfgang Schäuble returned to his old job as Federal Minister of the Interior. He served in the First Merkel cabinet from 2005 to 2009, and almost certainly used his powers during that time to ensure that Kaufmann would be unpersoned…..and all media access to him stopped. Understandably, Wolfie suspected that Ding-Dong Dieter would use any freedom offered to him as the opportunity to have another pop at the man who probably represents the single most powerful and dangerous news-bender and security black arts schemer in Western Europe. And to be fair, the silence about Kaufmann since 2009 may well be a hospital policy designed to give the guy an anonymity he perhaps deserves.

Conspiracists will point to the oddly consistent denial by all except Schäuble himself about the psychopathic dimension of Dieter Kaufmann’s dangerous mental condition. This and the constant releases from psychiatric care will convince some that Wolfie’s enemies set him free in the hope that he would do for the rising CDU star. But I don’t buy this: the record of psychiatric hospitals around the world when it comes to judging inmate safety for release into the community is a miserable one. I put it down to classic shrink arrogant incompetence.

Bu this double-header about a relatively obscure case history is about far more than one deranged gunman.

What I trying to do more and more these days is wake people up to a macro everyday reality: news manipulation adds to the general level of fear, confusion and obfuscation from which all thinking people suffer; while the wishfully unthinking Mob soak it up like blotting paper and can be easily recruited to any cause no matter how insidious, evil or just downright false it might be.

Classic 1984-style Ministries of Truth are at work throughout the States of the western world…and in Russia, China and Australia. Things have moved on from simple censorship of empirical information about who’s doing what to whom: now we are in an altogether more liberty-smashing era where what did happen becomes an unhappening – and is even replaced by a different set of events that didn’t happen – in order to rubbish The Enemy and confuse the investigator. As the Dickensian character said, “Result – unhappiness”.

The choice of Schäuble as a subject was quite conscious: his past form and real responsibilities need to be understood in full by the MSM-bleached minds of today, and the new generations tomorrow. One need only observe that 75% of all Brits recently surveyed blamed Greece completely for its current fiscal position. The plots, schemes and lies of Schäuble have, in my view, played a major role in creating such wrong-headed ignorance.

The British Conservative Party is a leading player in this game of rewritten history, continuing and embellishing with relish the half-truths and smear tactics pioneered by Alistair Campbell, Tony Blair and Peter Mandelson during the New Labour era. Washington and Brussels have persuaded even quite open-minded mainstream journalists that Putin is the real (indeed, only) villain in the Ukraine meltdown, that Hungary’s Viktor Orban is a minority-bashing Nazi, that bombing Jihadists works, that Syriza is hell-bent on the destruction of the euro, and that the Athens government alone has frittered away all the ‘economic progress’ under Nia Demokratia.

My parting shot remains the same:

If information is power, then disinformation is absolute power.

Footnotes: Googling ‘photos of assassin Dieter Kaufmann’ delivers hundreds of photos. None of them are of Wolfie’s assailant Dieter Kaufmann. I loaded this piece two hours ago. My laptop promptly turned itself off. When I restarted, the post had been taken down. Now with some reference changes, it is going up again.

Last night at The Slog: Flies, FA Cup finals, and fading competence