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In Germany, the far right is on the rise again. How did it happen?

43 Comments
By KIRSTEN GRIESHABER

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43 Comments
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Seems like a side effect of unchecked immigration. Same story in many countries.

6 ( +24 / -18 )

How does it happen?

Despots, Dictators, and Con-Men, using long-known propaganda and influence techniques to lie, dupe, and manipulate those less intelligent...

That's the definition of the far-right movement in the US...and I imagine elsewhere...

7 ( +19 / -12 )

Political re-alignment in Europe and elsewhere, much due to immigration, but also due to US NATO Ukraine Proxy War. Most do not want conflict with Russia and massive Ukrainian immigration, rather stable relations.

The sane seek to avoid WW III Armagedón, do not want their Govt. pursuing $policies greatly increasing such risks.

-14 ( +7 / -21 )

Lack of education in the East is one part, ignorance and wanting things easy in life make it vulnerable to the Right who reinforce that notion, that it will be easy if you end immigration, deport people and install a despotic system like China or a fake democracy like Russia where only one party can win due to imprisonment of popular rivals, outlawing political parties and exile for those who escape the impending prison sentence. Not to mention outright murders.

Life is not easy, even with new technology and machines that eliminate jobs. Anyone saying we can make it easy is lying at this point. They want your vote to get power and once they have it they dont like giving it up. Then your just an asset to be used, like in Russia's invasion where its population are canon fodder. Putin couldn't care less about the people.

11 ( +17 / -6 )

How did it happen? People woke up and saw how their country was being changed, didn't like what they saw and decided to do something about it. Increased crime, and a huge influx of people with different cultural beliefs and not welcomed by many. Add to that good old fashioned racism and what you get is a rise in Right wing groups.

-6 ( +15 / -21 )

Deindustrialization, energy crisis, housing crisis, covid, all these things hit hard.

The easiest solution... blame immigrants. Same story everywhere you go.

Actual solution: Way higher taxes for the mega rich. Build more houses. Invest in sustainable, or efficient/reliable energy (Green/nuclear).

3 ( +14 / -11 )

Sadly, hate is infinitely easier than love.

11 ( +17 / -6 )

I think controlling the borders of a sovereign nation is common sense not hate.

4 ( +15 / -11 )

After the fall of communism in 1989 and the unification of East and West Germany a year later, many people in the five eastern states lost not only their jobs but their collective past, leaving them disoriented and helpless in the capitalist system

Not buying it at all. Just a copout excuse for people to use behind their racism. It gets kind of quiet when things are going good but a person who is a bigot is not suddenly going to change because they have a great job, a car in the garage and food on the table. I don't have a university degree in anything close to this but you can easily see people who dislike you or don't want or like you being around. I have always been skeptical of Germany being different now as many friends of different ethnicities have told me but I hope I am proven to be incorrect. Japan is no different, either. Even during the Bubble, when the country was as prosperous as ever, I was shunned and turned away left and right and ignored constantly. Japanese may not be as violently racist as Germany but they do have a shared history of being on the very wrong side of history and the behavior here may be much more subtle but it IS there. The past is prologue. With all the tourists coming here now and the "shortage" of workers, more foreigners will be coming in and as we've seen in all these articles recently that tax "tourists," the country is adjusting its behavior too. They want the foreign tourists' money but not the tourists at all. The rise of the far right is happening in the U.S. and now Germany. It's dormant but will soon rise here again.

-4 ( +14 / -18 )

HopeSpringsEternalToday 03:50 pm JST

Political re-alignment in Europe and elsewhere, much due to immigration, but also due to US NATO Ukraine Proxy War.

Impossible because it is Still Putin's War.

9 ( +12 / -3 )

It's mass immigration, mainly. Especially after more than a million people arrived from the Middle East in 2015 alone. If you continually foist unpopular policies on a moderate population, you will eventually generate a lot of extremism.

Imagine if Japan decided to adopt the scale immigration that Germany and other western European have done? The reaction will be a lot harsher, I reckon.

3 ( +13 / -10 )

It's only my wild guess but there must be too many Russian agents working hard to destabilize the German society. Unfortunately, a lot of patience is required to nurture democracy. Once people with different skin colors and religions are eliminated, what comes next will be exclusion of those with different views on politics and society. Hopefully, majority of the German population will not support the far-right party.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

My dad works for the UNFCCC and has been a regular visitor to Bonn for the last 17 years.

He himself has seen how much things have changed, for example the restaurant which he frequents used to serve ham earlier but now those dishes are off the menu. Then women (Turkish immigrants) wearing the veil on the streets.

A bar he frequents has a Pakistani bartender, who told him recently how many migrants from Pakistan have sought asylum in Germany on the grounds that they are homosexual and homosexuals are persecuted in Pakistan. The bartender was laughing that the Germans will one day start thinking that most of us (from Pakistan) are homosexuals.

-1 ( +8 / -9 )

The easiest solution... blame immigrants. Same story everywhere you go. 

Not necessarily true, a lot of immigrants don’t care about the rules and laws of their host country, many try to impose their values ways and lifestyle on the nation that took them in.

Actual solution: Way higher taxes for the mega rich. Build more houses. Invest in sustainable, or efficient/reliable energy (Green/nuclear).

And that wouldn’t do much, better yet, trickle the flow of immigrants that are allowed into the country, give them time to assimilate and then repeat the process, letting in thousands of migrants at one time is a recipe for disaster and as long as that is the case you will always see a pushback from the citizens overwhelmingly.

-10 ( +6 / -16 )

The problem is not the big number of immigrants itself. The problem is, what those people do (a lot of crimes far above average crime rates) and what they don't (show a little bit respect for German lifestyle and culture and also a minimum of thankfulness for the hosting population for example by working a few hours in return and not only cashing in the generously applied money, housing, alimentation, Infrastructure etc.). That's why such parties are on the rise and are beginning to be anchored in the center core of society and citizens. But anyway, it's too late, with or without such a party, that country has been and still is handed over to the global south. Also the AfD party will see that the country is already irreversibly lost. Maybe there role is to accompany that transformation a bit more peacefully than it would be with chaos, right and left wing terror, mass strikes, violent revolutionary situations, massacres, terror attempts etc. In so far they are underestimated as a quite useful and big calming down factor.

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

many migrants from Pakistan have sought asylum in Germany

Meanwhile, in the real world outside of anecdotal bar talk, Germany in 2023 has granted asylum to 82 asylum seekers from Pakistan. "Many" indeed.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Not necessarily true, a lot of immigrants don’t care about the rules and laws of their host country, many try to impose their values ways and lifestyle on the nation that took them in.

Ha ha ha. Have you been back home lately? Most Yanks don't care about the rules of their home country.

Lifestyles in all countries are massively diverse anyway so your argument doesn't hold water.

The delusional weak minded masses will be told what to think by their despotic masters.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Meanwhile, in the real world outside of anecdotal bar talk, Germany in 2023 has granted asylum to 82 asylum seekers from Pakistan. "Many" indeed.

My original post mentioned that many migrants from Pakistan had applied for asylum on those grounds, not how many asylums had been granted.

For example,

https://www.ethnologie.uni-muenchen.de/personen/professorinnen/soekefeld/return-to-pakistan/index.html

The link mentions that 32000 plus migrants from Pakistan were found undeserving of asylum between 2016 and 2019.

Leaving the numbers aside, even if one person is able to game the system it shows that the system is not working as intended, and it also gives an incentive for other 'economic migrants' to follow on the path of those who preceded them.

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

In Germany, the far right is on the rise again. How did it happen?

Why not, I am curious how it will be as an experiment. There is no danger to make another Hitler anyways. Many countries have nukes and such to stop any serious expansion.

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

> JeffLeeToday 05:25 pm JST

It's mass immigration, mainly. Especially after more than a million people arrived from the Middle East in 2015 alone. If you continually foist unpopular policies on a moderate population, you will eventually generate a lot of extremism.

> Imagine if Japan decided to adopt the scale immigration that Germany and other western European have done? The reaction will be a lot harsher, I reckon.

Right. So, if that's the case, it has relatively nothing to do with how poor the native population is, inflation, etc, as the first part of this article would lead you to believe. Those just exacerbate the situation. The general population resents the presence of people who do not look like them or share their heritage, moreso if they have been persuaded to believe them to be criminally-inclined or rule/ tradition breakers. Many far right newscasters are more than happy to portray migrants or immigrants negatively en masse by picking and choosing and staging incidents (Sliwa and Hannity) to make them seem like a menace. Some in the population can also become really resentful, and I've seen it in Japan plenty of times, if you have a nicer home, car or life. They feel you don't belong, have somehow stolen from the "hardworking" people in the country, degrade the quality of life and aren't as respectable a citizen as any of them and cannot ever be seen as equal.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Ha ha ha. Have you been back home lately? Most Yanks don't care about the rules of their home country. 

You can make that argument about any country, but at least it’s the country of the natives born there, no need to compound the situation by adding people that refuse to assimilate.

Lifestyles in all countries are massively diverse anyway so your argument doesn't hold water.

Oh, yes it does.

The delusional weak minded masses will be told what to think by their despotic masters

Really?

-8 ( +3 / -11 )

Germany takes a lot of terrorists and criminals from other countries. When they continue doing the wrong things, all immigrants get blamed. It’s the wrong policy of providing protection to those involved in criminal activities in other countries. They are not normal, innocent citizens of the original countries.

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

Sven AsaiToday 06:14 pm JST

The problem is not the big number of immigrants itself. The problem is, what those people do (a lot of crimes far above average crime rates) and what they don't (show a little bit respect for German lifestyle and culture and also a minimum of thankfulness for the hosting population for example by working a few hours in return and not only cashing in the generously applied money, housing, alimentation, Infrastructure etc

Really? Where's the proof about the crimes and crime rate? Your post sound like exactly what the Japanese police say every year about crimes by foreigners being on the rise but only show a total number. No rate. No comparison of the rate of increase in the foreign population or to the Japanese. It's biased, inaccurate, unscientific and just good old fear mongering, plain and simple. They are really good at it, too, but there are no reasons EVER to target a whole group. Are/were all Germans Nazis? Saying immigrants don't show a little bit of respect and are just 'cashing in' is an ignorant comment. You probably don't know anything about any of the immigrants in the country so just how can you say that? The main problem by far is the people who think just like you.

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

How many illegal migrants are in Germany?

"Currently, an estimated 280,000 foreign nationals are staying in Germany without a valid residence permit and are obliged to leave the country. Nearly 80% of them have been allowed to stay so far because authorities could not deport them due to factual or legal reasons. Nov 7, 2023"

Just under 19.0 million people in Germany had an immigration history in 2021. They accounted for 23.0% of the population.

17.3% of Germany's population has immigrated since 1950

https://www.destatis.de/EN/Press/2023/03/PE23_080_12.html#:~:text=Just%20under%2019.0%20million%20people,for%2023.0%25%20of%20the%20population.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Political re-alignment in Europe and elsewhere, much due to immigration,

Political realignment in Europe has seen many ex soviet states ask for, and be granted membership in the EU and NATO. Most doing so to remove the ability of Russia to reassert dominance over them.

but also due to US NATO Ukraine Proxy War.

The correct translation is, the unprovoked Russian invasion of Ukraine that has been ongoing for years now. As Russia struggles to create a new empire with Ukraine becoming part of Putin's new nation. NATO, the US and many other nations around the globe send support to Ukraine, for its continued survival.

The sane seek to avoid WW III Armagedón,

While Russian insanity works towards achieving armageddon.

do not want their Govt. pursuing $policies greatly increasing such risks.

Sadly the Russians with a brain and a conscience are imprisoned and sent to fight as canon fodder in Russia's invasion of Ukraine where Putin hopes they will die and no longer talk out against his insane policies.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

In 1920s' Germany the popular slogan that history proved correct was "The enemy is on the Right". This warning still applies to the world today because the trajectory of western capitalism that has metastasized into "globalism" since 1980 has created inequalities and instabilities with its wars and neo-colonial depredations around the world which have resulted in millions of migrants forced to flee from violence and hunger while working-class people continue to pay an ever high price with poverty and to keep an exploiting parasitical class in luxury. The blowback takes various forms: MagaTrumpism, BrexitToryism, Likudism, Putinism and many other rightwing movements that all work against the interests of their members. Unless people wake up, the future will get much darker still.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

You can make that argument about any country, but at least it’s the country of the natives born there

This will come as a surprise to Native Americans.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

“I understand that many people are worn out from all these crises — the coronavirus pandemic, the war in Ukraine, the many migrants, inflation — and that they are afraid that things are going to get worse,” Thonke said. “But the solutions the AfD offers won’t solve any of these problems.”

Only one of the factors listed is "migrants", who are unconnected to the "coronavirus pandemic", the "war in Ukraine", and "inflation".

Inflation is linked to both the war in Ukraine and the coronavirus pandemic. In Germany's case, it is especially linked to the war due to the sanctions on Russian energy. As suggested, I strongly doubt the AfD is offering solutions, but there will probably be lots of political points to be scored merely by recognizing such issues as problems for people. Many politicians respond to questions about the cost of living by cherry picking stats to suggest folks are much better off than they are experiencing in their daily lives. This may shut up weak interviewers, but most people can see through dodgy stats and politicians' excuses.

I do not welcome people expressing support or voting for the far right, but people have a right to be angry and politicians of other bents, especially righteous politicians of the political center, would be wise to listen and not simply dismiss people's concerns.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

This will come as a surprise to Native Americans.

They came from somewhere as well. Weak argument, and by the way, we all come from Africa.

-11 ( +4 / -15 )

bass4funk

This will come as a surprise to Native Americans.

> They came from somewhere as well. Weak argument, and by the way, we all come from Africa.

Who are the first inhabitants of Germany

The original German Celtic natives

4 ( +7 / -3 )

This is nothing but History repeating itself. If you look at history "HIS-TORY) the real story is never told. It's swept under the rug, re-written and forgotten only to come back in a different form but logically the same. Man has always traveled and upon their travels they conquered land, and the land they took over, or settled in amongst the people they wanted or tried to change the culture and force those to accept what they thought was the right way. In this case immigration coming to a new country does the same. They form their own small communities with in and eventually they spread, people come from all walks of life, different cultures and values, and with that everyone thinks their culture is right. The problem is man just can't get along, and never will.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@Mocheake

The general population resents the presence of people who do not look like them...

I don't know about that. I do that in a democracy, mainstream parties all pushing the same unpopular policy for quite a few years will open the door to extremism.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Who are the first inhabitants of Germany

The original German Celtic natives

And before that? They just didn’t appear out of nowhere. Anyway, the point is, a lot of countries in Europe, particularly in country, such as Germany, Sweden and Denmark, immigration has been an overall disaster, you do have people to have integrated well into the society, but you have a lot more that have not, and it has caused a problem, and this is one of the reasons why you’re seeing the far right rise up.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

Large scale and rapid change followed by a sense of not understanding and loss of control always encourage less attractive sides in the human psyche. I mean in a general population. However nowadays most people in the west and several other areas have education which in terms of knowledge and modus operandi helps to process emotions so they can be understood in a rational way. Unfortunately it has become ever clearer that an offered education is not the same as a received education in many countries, the US first and foremost, at least since Trump started to dig in to peoples discontent.

In a functioning democracy there are always fascists groups and that is perfectly normal, some may say even a necessity. Deviations are simply necessary for a sustainable normality with creativity and stability. The problem arises when the normality of the political system advances without bringing the people with it, springing discontent. Discontent has been fertile soil for all kinds of political worms and it may be interpreted as a reminder to the political system that it needs to slow down, connect with the people again and explain what is going on. Authoritarians and fascists can become very dangerous if a democratic system let them continue to play the system against itself. Democracy needs mechanisms to defend itself without becoming what they are defending themselves against. Both the US and Europes systems has been slapped in the face with a glove - now what are we going to do about it?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

It's a natural result of poor immigration policies.

Hopefully, Japan will learn from Europe's mistakes and keep immigration rules strict.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Because the foreing invasion caused by left and progressive politics..

Biggest enemies of Europe are the invasion from other countries and religions against western culture..

And the interventionism of good old US..

Both are the biggest enemies of Europe..

Europe must be free of them..

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

How hopeless this article, which can be summarised by :

far left extremism : smart people. IQ over 160. Help your country to be invaded by illegal immigrants. Good people.

far right extremism : ignorant or brainless people. Wish country to keep local culture and stop helping those who did not yet help the country. Bad people.

Anyone knows that Europe will vote very right soon on 9th June. Do non European people think we are all dumb we as indigenous Europeans who thought about democracy, equality and freedom ?

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

JeffLeeMar. 18 09:35 pm JST

@Mocheake

> The general population resents the presence of people who do not look like them...

> I don't know about that. I do that in a democracy, mainstream parties all pushing the same unpopular policy for quite a few years will open the door to extremism.

Fair point, but I think the reason why it is unpopular is because many on the right don't want people who do not look like them to have a large(r) population or large say in the government and the country they feel their ancestors built and they've inherited. Just my opinion from my travels. "First World" countries will accept immigrants to do jobs the native population doesn't want to do but when they feel they are losing too much power that feeling finds its way into the mainstream quite easily. The backlash in the States started well before all the talk about migrants. Many in the far right, like that klansman David Duke, were alarmed at the rising power of blacks and the browning of America way back when. Migrants are just the latest easy target, but look at how they are trying to redistrict, take away voting and abortion rights, etc and you can see that the door to extremism on the right was never ever close to being closed no matter who was in power, it's just worse when a democrat is in the White House. The bombing in Oklahoma City is one unfortunate example of that. Charlottesville happened during the Trump administration and he didn't even condemn it. He's going to get 80 to 90 million votes in the next election, the overwhelming majority of which will come from people who who all of a sudden feel like they are the real victims of disenfranchisement.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Why does the far right have such a problem with people who look and act differently than them? When I first came to Japan decades ago, everyone acted and looked so strange, but after some time they started acting and looking more normal to me. By the end of my time here, I barely noticed them.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Obviously, they are talking about the AfD. Read their program and compare that with the biased reporting. There is nothing "far right" about the AfD, unless you call anyone outside of the leftist dogma "far right".

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Typical junk article written by a far-leftist blaming all the problems on the right rather than critiquing the leftist policies (many instituted under the nominally right-wing Christian Democrats) that are leading to Germany's state of social and economic anguish right now. Germans have the right to be angry about their federal government selling out the country to EU and UN technocrats to allow mass illegal immigration and destructive "green" policies. This is only going to lead to a backlash by the people the policies are leaving worse off.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

ZaphodToday  06:41 am JST

Obviously, they are talking about the AfD. Read their program and compare that with the biased reporting. There is nothing "far right" about the AfD, unless you call anyone outside of the leftist dogma "far right".

The standard "reporting" is laughable. Reporters like this can't see past their own deep biases and slur anything and anyone whey disagree with as "far-right" instead of taking an objective look as to why these Germans are angry. It's patently obvious.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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