Maybe it was naive, but I really thought Germany would stay immune to the rot of right-wing populism that keeps rearing its ugly head these days. When I first moved to the country, I was amazed at how well they had dealt with the evils of their past. A culture of remembrance whose credo was “never again” was present everywhere; Germans carried the burden of their crimes and fostered critical thinking, sometimes to the point of being slightly annoying (isn’t there any irrational subjectivity in this country, I’d wonder, occassionally even missing my father’s Republican rants…)
Sure, Germany still had some neo-Nazis and they even had their own political party—the NPD. But most of them were off somewhere off in the woods of Sachsen or Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, or far out in Berlin’s former East neighborhoods, like Marzahn or Lichtenberg. If anything, I’d seen more neo-Nazi bullshit in the white flight town I grew up in in the Bay Area (occasional racist pamphlets appearing, always full of atrocious grammar and spelling…) than I had ever seen or heard of in Germany.
But now, the right-wing party Alternative für Deutschland (Alternative for Germany) just won over 13 percent in the national elections. When the party first showed up four years ago, they positioned themselves as a Eurosceptic party who wanted Germany to get rid of the Euro, etc. They won 4.7 percent of the national vote, which was bad enough.
This time around, however, they showed their true colors as widerliche Nazi scum. The racist slogans on their campaign poster seriously made me want to vomit, the worst of all being: Wir machen unsere Deutschen selber (We make our own Germans), which showed a pregnant German woman lying in a field. They were completely playing on the fears people have about the refugee crisis and the fact that Germany is becoming an increasingly diverse society, at times using rhetoric and suggestion that made you think we were back in 1933.
And now they’re the third strongest party in Germany. This is the first time an extreme right-wing party is making its way into the German parliament since the end of the war.
Germany, you should know better. I’m deeply, deeply enttäuscht…
This video shows quotes of some of the disgusting things the AfD politicians said during this campaign. I translated some of the worst statements (they’re all terrible, but I can’t stomach writing out the words to all of them….) in the video below for anyone who doesn’t speak German.
Die Neuen am rechten Rand: Wer demnächst in den Bundestag einziehen könnte, sehen Sie hier
Posted by ZEIT ONLINE on Samstag, 23. September 2017
“The murder of European Jews is still used today as an effective instrument to criminalize Germans and their history.” Wilhelm von Gottberg (aka Nazi motherfucker), Niedersachsen
“We see “radical” as pejorative, whereas Muslims see in it the true Islam.” Gottfried Curio (aka Islamophobe piece of shit), Berlin
“Other parties support immigration because they want Germans to dissolve into a European melting pot.” (Arnim-Paul Hampel, (aka old fart still touting Nazi racial purity disgustingness in 20fucking17), Niedersachen