January 16, 2019
The German government is keeping a stern and close eye on its own population.
Germany’s domestic intelligence agency is to step up monitoring of the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party for suspected extremism.
But the BfV agency is not yet going as far as to use informants or phone taps in its nationwide watch on AfD.
AfD is the main opposition party. It entered the federal parliament for the first time in 2017, winning 94 seats in the 709-seat lower house (Bundestag).
AfD sees Islam as a threat to German values, urging tough immigration curbs.
Regardless of whether Germany was Fascist, Communist or Liberal, it seems that they’ve always had an extensive and attentive secret police.
And this iteration of the secret police sees the AfD as a threat to post-German German values.
The BfV has previously put a watch on some socialist politicians in Die Linke, a party with roots in the old East German Communist Party.
The BfV is empowered under the German constitution to act against perceived threats to the democratic order.
Some statements by AfD leaders have been condemned as encouraging neo-Nazi extremism. AfD activists took part in far-right rallies in the eastern city of Chemnitz last year, marred by clashes with police.
I think that reading between the lines, we can figure out that the German police are afraid of a Yellow Vest equivalent movement.
Prediction: it might happen, but not over immigration.
That’s already been tried and done and it fizzled out. It happened in 2015 and it was called “Pegida.” The usual right-leaning types came out to protest and the far-left was mobilized with the help of the police – and they clashed.
No, you need something that the Left can’t exactly openly oppose – something broad and anti-establishment in nature. In France, the Antifa left actually did make an appearance to combat the Yellow Vests at the beginning, but I suppose their handlers were smart enough to realize the bad optics of siding with the “Fascist” government that they themselves were ostensibly supposed to be battling and standing in the way of a truly popular mass movement.
It also has to be something with the potential to get soccer moms and boomer dads into the fight. An increased gas tax was apparently just the thing that everyone needed in France, so we’ll have to see what the secret ingredient for Germany will be. If I were in the AfD, I would be scouring my brain trying to think of what that key landmine issue could be for German society and then I would try to get the government to foolishly step on it.
Regardless, I think that France has inspired populists all over Europe and I would, frankly, be shocked if something similar didn’t kick off in Germany – although, again, I confess I don’t know what guise it would take.
Hopefully, it happens in spring.
“European Spring” just sounds so catchy.