Posted on January 18, 2024

The Real Nature of German Democracy

Gregory Hood, American Renaissance, January 18, 2024

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It seems democracy is not a process, but an outcome. Certain policies — even if citizens want them, even if previous generations took them for granted — aren’t allowed. Many people say that a true liberal democracy must protect certain liberties no matter what, for fear of tyranny. However, much of the world has no freedom of speech — the most important “right” of all. Americans officially banned freedom of association in 1964, and the rights to bear arms or defend yourself and your property are glimmering away. “Human rights” are now the weapons governments, NGOs, and media use to take away traditional liberties.

The Alternative for Deutschland (AFD) party is gaining strength in Germany. Though immigration is its most important issues, it’s not the only reason the party is winning voters. The baffling economic decisions of the Berlin regime, often made in the name of “clean energy” and fighting Russia, are badly hurting German industry. The GDP reportedly shrank in 2023, and may shrink again this year, for a two-year recession. German farmers are blocking roads to protest new government policies; Vice Chancellor Robert Habeck frets that “calls are circulating with coup fantasies, extremist groups are forming and ethnic-nationalist symbols are being openly displayed.”

Calling entire groups “extremist” is the standard German way to control dissent. It’s the Stasi mentality and Germany is, in short, not free. It can ban political movements that question the “Basic Law” of the German constitution. Some would say this is an essential safeguard, like the Bill of Rights, but the truth is different. The Basic Law guarantees freedom of opinion, speech, and association, and other things most whites in the West took for granted until recently. Yet all these rights are limited by “law,” so almost all can be restricted in the name of fighting the “extreme” Right.

According to polls, the AfD has about 23 percent support — more than any party except the “center-right” CDU of former Chancellor Angela Merkel. The AfD has even more support in some eastern states, topping 30 percent in Saxony, Thuringia, and Brandenburg, where it is number one. The CDU is feeling the pressure. It obviously would benefit from an AfD ban that would make it the only option on the Right.

In 2021, the political police (officially known as “the State Office for the Protection of the Constitution”) said the state party in Thuringia was an extremist organization because it had links to other “extremist” organizations, such as the Identitarian Movement. The political police said that the party thought German citizenship was rooted in an “ethnic-cultural peoplehood” [i.e. actually being German], which is not allowed, and doesn’t like Muslims. In fact, the head of the political police says the party “spread hate against all types of minorities.”

In April 2023, the government ruled that the AfD’s youth wing was “extremist.” That means it can intercept mail, deny members government jobs, eavesdrop on phone calls, and read email. In November 2023, the Saxony-Anhalt chapter of the AfD was designated “extremist.” Some in the party had called migrants “invaders,” “intruders,” or “culturally alien supply migrants,” which apparently isn’t allowed. Talking about the “conspiracy theory” of the “Great Reset” is apparently anti-Semitic. The political police decided that the party’s objectives could not be achieved without violating constitutional principles.

In December 2023, the political police in Saxony also ruled that the AfD in that state is “extremist” and pursuing “anti-constitutional goals.” It accused the state party of promoting “ethnopluralism” — a European New Right idea that argues peoples have a right to keep their culture and identity. That’s practically required by law in the United States for non-whites. The AfD seems to think whites should have that right, too, which apparently threatens the constitutional order. Police official Dirk-Martin Christian says the expression “imported killers” to describe migrant criminals is not allowed because it is “constantly fueling fears and resentments against the population.”

The police can read minds. They say terms such as remigration or “The Great Exchange [Replacement]” “hide their [the AfD’s] racist core and their origin in National Socialism.” The AfD says nothing about Jews, but the police say such terms as the “international financial elite” are “encrypted” anti-Semitism. Finally, talking about an “unjust regime” or “party cartel” could “fundamentally shake the population’s trust in the constitutional order and the functionality of our democracy.” In November, the AfD was banned from funding that’s available to other parties.

Party members face career-ending sanctions. In August, a former AfD member of the Bundestag, Jens Maier, was removed from his job as a judge after the Saxony Justice Minister, a member of the Green Party, asked that he be forcibly retired. The minister, Katja Meier, is a former member of a punk band whose songs celebrated violence against police.

Germany has lost the right to call Russia or China “authoritarian,” but these rulings haven’t stopped the party’s growth. The AfD reported a membership increase of about 37 percent from 2022 to 2023. In September, Brandenburg, Saxony, and Thuringia will hold elections, all areas where the AfD is strong. The party could come in first, despite being labeled “extreme.”

The government is considering a total ban. Foreign Policy said last month that the German “mainstream” is getting “desperate for a fix.” CDU parliamentarian from Saxony Marco Wanderwitz says the AfD is “now undoubtedly radical right wing” and is “up to no good and serious about it.” “I’m afraid that without a court-ordered prohibition, we’re not going to be rid of them,” he said. He complains they “flood the internet and parliaments with right-wing extremist content 24 hours a day.” Evidently, no one else can compete. Mr. Wanderwitz won’t say how many other elected officials support his proposed ban.

January 14, 2024: A protester holds up a sign reading “AfD ban now” during a demonstration against the Alternative for Germany party. (Credit Image: © Clemens Bilan/EFE via ZUMA Press)

Saskia Esken, co-chairwoman of the socialist SPD, says banning a party is “subject to high hurdles,” but says, “I am convinced we should keep reviewing it” because “it is important that we talk about banning the AfD and that voters are shaken up.” Shaken up? “It [AfD] uses every topic to incite people,” she says, and “for me that is clearly anti-democratic.” She also accused the party of using forbidden language (“the great exchange,” or what Americans would call The Great Replacement), wanting to “divide our society and destroy our democracy,” and pursue “anti-constitutional goals.” If her “suspicion” is proven, she thinks “the party must be banned.”

The minister-president of Schleswig-Holstein, a member of the CDU, said that he has a “certain sympathy” for a ban. “We notice how dangerous they are,” he says. German president Frank-Walter Steinmeier said that Germans “all have it in our hands to put those who despise our democracy in their place.”

The “German Institute for Human Rights,” which gets funding from the government, says the party can be banned because it wants “to eliminate the free democratic basic order” and “abolish the guarantee of human dignity.” The director of the institute supports a ban because “German history, in particular, has shown that the free democratic basic order of a state can be destroyed if inhumane positions do not meet with vigorous opposition in time and are thus able to spread and prevail.” Hendrik Cremer, a lawyer who wrote a 72-page paper on why the party could be banned, said that proposals that “arbitrarily determine who lives in Germany and who does not, which includes deportations of German citizens” would require “the use of violence that violates fundamental and human rights.”

The government is especially worried about Björn Höcke, who could take power in Thuringia if elections go well for the party. He has called for canceling state-media contracts, ending the “fight against the right,” and reversing the “politics of remembrance,” by which the government bases its legitimacy on apologizing for the past. Canceling state support for biased media makes a party anti-democratic.

“The damage that an authoritarian populist party that holds this office [of state president] could do to democracy as a whole is immense,” said the political police. What does “authoritarian” mean in that sentence? Some protesters have started a petition for the government to ban Mr. Höcke from holding office and limit his freedoms of speech and assembly. The government is also putting him on trial for daring to use the phrase “everything for Germany” in a campaign speech. We should remember this the next time the United States and NATO complain about the way Russia treats government opponent Alexei Navalny.

The government is most worried about the AfD’s support for remigration. The press breathlessly reported that some AfD politicians met with Identitarian leader Martin Sellner and discussed remigration. The AfD replied: “The AfD won’t change its position on immigration policy because of a single opinion at a non-AfD meeting.” The journalists drew blood with their report when party leader Alice Weidel ditched aide Roland Hartwig — though two members of the CDU were also reportedly at the meeting.

Martin Sellner at a rally against the great replacement on October 3, 2020 in Vienna, Austria. (Credit Image: © Isabelle Ouvrard/APA Picturedesk via ZUMA Press)

The aforementioned Marco Wanderwitz is especially incensed about proposals to deport non-assimilated German citizens. He raised the question of whether Aydan Ozoguz, a Turkish-origin parliamentarian from the SPD, should be deported because she has a “Turkish migration background.” Miss Ozoguz has said there is no dominant German culture and that there shouldn’t be, so she may not be his most heart-warming example.

The media campaign led to protests against the AfD last weekend. Chancellor Olaf Scholz also criticized the party:

We will not allow anyone to differentiate the “we” in our country based on whether or not someone has an immigrant background. We protect everyone — regardless of origin, skin color . . . .

Anyone who goes against our free, democratic basic order is a case for our Office for the Protection of the Constitution and the judiciary. The fact that we learn from history is not just lip service. Democrats must stand together.

What does “democracy” mean to Chancellor Scholz? Or Germany? Apparently, it is not a violation of rights to toy with banning political parties, restricting speech, or spying on people as if it were still East Germany. However, even to discuss sending foreigners back is too much, even though Germany is considering requiring immigrants to support Zionism as a condition of citizenship.

Germany’s so-called Institute for Human Rights seems to be its greatest enemy of actual liberties. With a stagnating economy and a surging population of hostile non-whites, Germany will be absorbed into the Third World if it does not consider remigration. The German government seems willing to consider tyranny to stop this and is therefore neither democratic nor “liberal.” It’s certainly not German.