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Germany : Charlottesville in Saxony

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  • Germany : Charlottesville in Saxony

    Germany has just had its "Charlottesville" moment, with the worst far-right riots since the 1990s, in the eastern city of Chemnitz (state of Saxony). Since : Marching through town with the Hitler salute and Nazi flags, attacking police, counter-demonstrators and alleged foreigners with clubs, stones and fireworks, looting shops and torching cars isnt a "protest" by concerned citizens according to any standard, it is far-right thugs testing their limits. The probably most regrettable thing is the lack of a decisive police response ( that took a day or so to materialize and massive reenforcements and pressure from outside) and the speed with that the Nazis were apparently able to mobilize and to bring in sympathizers from across the country.
    The backround and the facts :
    Early Sunday morning, on the fringes of a city festival in Chemnitz, a young man was stabbed to death. Police are holding two guys, at least one of them allegedly syrian, in custody in connection to the murder. Yet it is also part of the truth that they have not been formally charged and that the investigation is ongoing. What investigators have ruled out however is terrorism and/or a connection to harassement of women. Which were both claims circulating on the internet. It is furthermore part of the truth that both victim and suspects have a migration backround (the victim from Cuba apparently). And that unless the case was useful as cover for mobilization the Nazis would be not very likely to get aroused over it.
    And that police have neither ruled out a crime/drug related incident nor an unfortunately escalated drunken brawl.
    The state of Saxony (capital is Dresden) unfortunately has a history of the militant far right raising its head every now and then, which goes back to the inter-war period and was never completely supressed by the Communists (shouting Nazi slogans or showing a Swastika was one of the maximum rebellions you could commit back then). Also in recent years attempts by Nazis trying to enter the public sphere have forced majority society to push back ( and that is also happening now, a bunch of Germanys most famous artists have announced free street concerts in Chemnitz against Nazis this weekend f.e.)
    And Chemnitz is also the seat of a university, international companies, and a destination for tourists that will not condone mobs allowed to march undisturbed.
    Yet these pictures will take a while to be forgotten :



    https://www.dw.com/en/violence-in-ch...nts/a-45262531


    A controversial though interesting perspective from abroad :

    https://global.handelsblatt.com/opin...ampaign=embreg


  • #2
    Originally posted by Voland View Post
    Germany has just had its "Charlottesville" moment, with the worst far-right riots since the 1990s, in the eastern city of Chemnitz (state of Saxony). Since : Marching through town with the Hitler salute and Nazi flags, attacking police, counter-demonstrators and alleged foreigners with clubs, stones and fireworks, looting shops and torching cars isnt a "protest" by concerned citizens according to any standard, it is far-right thugs testing their limits. The probably most regrettable thing is the lack of a decisive police response ( that took a day or so to materialize and massive reenforcements and pressure from outside) and the speed with that the Nazis were apparently able to mobilize and to bring in sympathizers from across the country.
    The backround and the facts :
    Early Sunday morning, on the fringes of a city festival in Chemnitz, a young man was stabbed to death. Police are holding two guys, at least one of them allegedly syrian, in custody in connection to the murder. Yet it is also part of the truth that they have not been formally charged and that the investigation is ongoing. What investigators have ruled out however is terrorism and/or a connection to harassement of women. Which were both claims circulating on the internet. It is furthermore part of the truth that both victim and suspects have a migration backround (the victim from Cuba apparently). And that unless the case was useful as cover for mobilization the Nazis would be not very likely to get aroused over it.
    And that police have neither ruled out a crime/drug related incident nor an unfortunately escalated drunken brawl.
    The state of Saxony (capital is Dresden) unfortunately has a history of the militant far right raising its head every now and then, which goes back to the inter-war period and was never completely supressed by the Communists (shouting Nazi slogans or showing a Swastika was one of the maximum rebellions you could commit back then). Also in recent years attempts by Nazis trying to enter the public sphere have forced majority society to push back ( and that is also happening now, a bunch of Germanys most famous artists have announced free street concerts in Chemnitz against Nazis this weekend f.e.)
    And Chemnitz is also the seat of a university, international companies, and a destination for tourists that will not condone mobs allowed to march undisturbed.
    Yet these pictures will take a while to be forgotten :



    https://www.dw.com/en/violence-in-ch...nts/a-45262531


    A controversial though interesting perspective from abroad :

    https://global.handelsblatt.com/opin...ampaign=embreg
    First, an observation on Chemnitz' population -about 250,000 inhabitants. Add in the history of extremist groups (recent, and violent), along with the sudden increase in protesters by Monday. -The first mistake was by the local police administration; they should have had a much larger force at the ready by late Saturday, within quick driving time of Chemnitz. The DW article you linked indicated the one who died was German, two others involved in the attack were "outsiders" -foreign nationals. As soon as the investigation sorts out what really happened in these situations, it becomes imperative that the city administration get hold of the press to clarify. The internet can make up "facts" to whip up the crazies, but at least the professional media can present just the facts as soon as possible. If it was a drug deal gone bad, that needed to get press ASAP, with comments by the same city spokesperson about particular lies being spread on the internet.

    This lack of planning and organization might be resistant to cultural norms. Similar mistakes were reported after Charlottesville as you imply. Link:
    The blistering report criticizes police planning as “inadequate and disconnected.” Charlottesville police supervisors failed to provide adequate training to line officers and police planners waited too long to request assistance from state emergency response officials, the report said.
    https://wtop.com/virginia/2017/12/re...onalist-rally/

    My take on the problem is one of too much pride or hubris by police & other city administration. They feel they have controlled their "turf" very well up to now, but asking for assistance from outside is a sign of weakness. Were I among the leadership of government (anywhere in the world), I would use both cities' experience with violent extremists -on video no less. Perhaps start the training with some video interviews of police & city administrators on how well they handle potentially sketchy situations, like massive festivals. However, large groups of people who profess their deep love of beer, contrasts radically with massive gatherings of people who have demonstrated their violent opposition to the state. A few pointed questions to city officials fe -please explain differences between the two groups? End the training conference with encouragement -they will be praised on their foresight when they ask for reinforcements, and other state resources (fe state intelligence on radical groups attending) will be generously provided. A final hint to officials: Your chances of moving up in the world will improve when you use this training wisely. Your chances of going anywhere when you let your pride rule in these difficult situations, are almost nil.

    ?


    • #3
      Originally posted by radcentr View Post
      First, an observation on Chemnitz' population -about 250,000 inhabitants. Add in the history of extremist groups (recent, and violent), along with the sudden increase in protesters by Monday. -The first mistake was by the local police administration; they should have had a much larger force at the ready by late Saturday, within quick driving time of Chemnitz. The DW article you linked indicated the one who died was German, two others involved in the attack were "outsiders" -foreign nationals. As soon as the investigation sorts out what really happened in these situations, it becomes imperative that the city administration get hold of the press to clarify. The internet can make up "facts" to whip up the crazies, but at least the professional media can present just the facts as soon as possible. If it was a drug deal gone bad, that needed to get press ASAP, with comments by the same city spokesperson about particular lies being spread on the internet.

      This lack of planning and organization might be resistant to cultural norms. Similar mistakes were reported after Charlottesville as you imply. Link:
      https://wtop.com/virginia/2017/12/re...onalist-rally/

      My take on the problem is one of too much pride or hubris by police &amp;amp; other city administration. They feel they have controlled their "turf" very well up to now, but asking for assistance from outside is a sign of weakness. Were I among the leadership of government (anywhere in the world), I would use both cities' experience with violent extremists -on video no less. Perhaps start the training with some video interviews of police &amp;amp; city administrators on how well they handle potentially sketchy situations, like massive festivals. However, large groups of people who profess their deep love of beer, contrasts radically with massive gatherings of people who have demonstrated their violent opposition to the state. A few pointed questions to city officials fe -please explain differences between the two groups? End the training conference with encouragement -they will be praised on their foresight when they ask for reinforcements, and other state resources (fe state intelligence on radical groups attending) will be generously provided. A final hint to officials: Your chances of moving up in the world will improve when you use this training wisely. Your chances of going anywhere when you let your pride rule in these difficult situations, are almost nil.

      Oh, there are many interesting questions surrounding the case. Such as why Germanys domestic intelligence service, the "Office for the protection of the constitution" (Verfassungsschutz) was able to warn local authorities of imminent and massive Nazi gatherings in their city - yet nothing happened. Such as asking for police reenforcements to be able to deal with these loads of troublemakers (there are rules for this kind of situations, that were obviously ignored). And how the arrest warrant against the suspects ( including names and witnesses) ended up leaked on right wing sites. Which could only have happened from inside law enforcement.
      But also some backround on Saxony and eastern Germany in general might help to understand why the far right has been able to establish a stronghold there, but not in many other regions ( which might also hold a general, and supranational lesson).
      Saxons are famous in Germany for several things, a weird and often mocked dialect , but also inventiveness, stubborness and diligence. Up until WW II the ancient kingdom of Saxony was one of Germanys industrial heartlands. The first car factory in Germany was in Zwickau, today an impoverished backwater on the border with the Czech Republic, not in Munich (BMW) or in Stuttgart ( Daimler, Porsche). The technical universities in Dresden and in Chemnitz ( both in Saxony) have made enormous and lasting contributions to the advance of german engineering for significantly more than a century.
      The so-called "Monday protests", that led to the downfall of the GDR Communists, originated in Saxony, and also the famous slogan "We are the people".
      And Saxons sense of rebelliousness is very much alive. When in 2013 the UNESCO, the UN heritage body threatened to withdraw Dresdens world heritage status over the construction of a highway bridge locals decided to go for-- the construction of the bridge.
      A kind of defensive rebelliousnous is also fuelled by the sentiment to have usually ended up on the wrong side of history. Saxons led the fight for dominance of the german tribes against Charles the Greats christianized Franks--and lost. They sided with Napoleon against prussian dominance- and ended up encorporated into a Prussian dominated second empire. They lost most of their industrial clout when companies and entrepeneurs fled westwards after the arrival of Communism and they lost again 80 % of industry jobs after the reunion.
      And in spite of that the state booms. Saxony has recieved considerable , also international investment, and its rebuilt historical and cultural splendor (such as Dresdens old town) attract loads of tourists. Its unemployment rate can be disregarded, it has world-class universities and Saxony is also strategically located, at the crossroad of Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic.
      To understand why Saxony still has an extremism problem one has to look at its relatively large class of welfare recipients. Which is a heritage of the GDR. Many of those had jobs and careers under the Communists, yet for various reasons never managed to "arrive" in the united country. Their jobs often vanished , their status as well and the departure of many talented, educated and enterprising young people in the post reunion period has caused holes in societal fabric ( and public infrastructure), especially in rural regions, that the country has still not recovered from. Even as the economy booms and people also from elsewhere and abroad move to Saxony (yet mainly to the big cities), there clearly is a class of reunion-loosers (so to say), and that is where the extreme right and their parliamentary arm, the AFD, mainly recruit their followers. Not all real or self opinionated reunion loosers are extremists and thugs obviously. Not even all AFD voters. Saxony has a long history of casting right wing votes in protest against many things. Yet this backround demonstrates why far righties are less hesitant to show themselves in public there than f.e. in Berlin or in the Rhineland.
      Add in the heritage of two totalitarian dictatorships and that like in eastern european countries eastern german democracy is a young one. And to return to the topic add in desastrous police leadership errors in Chemnitz that are serious enough to merit an investigation of its own.
      The issue in Chemnitz was the far right taking a case that is still under investigation as vehicle for embarassing the state and law enforcement. And their strategy is too play the scars that the post-reunion transformation left plus current controversies like the refugee issue-- in their favour. Yet their real target is something else. That should be understood.

      ?


      • #4
        Originally posted by Voland View Post
        ...
        A kind of defensive rebelliousnous is also fuelled by the sentiment to have usually ended up on the wrong side of history. Saxons led the fight for dominance of the german tribes against Charles the Greats christianized Franks--and lost. They sided with Napoleon against prussian dominance- and ended up encorporated into a Prussian dominated second empire. They lost most of their industrial clout when companies and entrepeneurs fled westwards after the arrival of Communism and they lost again 80 % of industry jobs after the reunion.
        And in spite of that the state booms. Saxony has recieved considerable , also international investment, and its rebuilt historical and cultural splendor (such as Dresdens old town) attract loads of tourists. Its unemployment rate can be disregarded, it has world-class universities and Saxony is also strategically located, at the crossroad of Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic.
        To understand why Saxony still has an extremism problem one has to look at its relatively large class of welfare recipients. Which is a heritage of the GDR. Many of those had jobs and careers under the Communists, yet for various reasons never managed to "arrive" in the united country. Their jobs often vanished , their status as well and the departure of many talented, educated and enterprising young people in the post reunion period has caused holes in societal fabric ( and public infrastructure), especially in rural regions, that the country has still not recovered from. Even as the economy booms and people also from elsewhere and abroad move to Saxony (yet mainly to the big cities), there clearly is a class of reunion-loosers (so to say), and that is where the extreme right and their parliamentary arm, the AFD, mainly recruit their followers. Not all real or self opinionated reunion loosers are extremists and thugs obviously. Not even all AFD voters. Saxony has a long history of casting right wing votes in protest against many things. Yet this backround demonstrates why far righties are less hesitant to show themselves in public there than f.e. in Berlin or in the Rhineland.
        Add in the heritage of two totalitarian dictatorships and that like in eastern european countries eastern german democracy is a young one. And to return to the topic add in desastrous police leadership errors in Chemnitz that are serious enough to merit an investigation of its own.
        The issue in Chemnitz was the far right taking a case that is still under investigation as vehicle for embarassing the state and law enforcement. And their strategy is too play the scars that the post-reunion transformation left plus current controversies like the refugee issue-- in their favour. Yet their real target is something else. That should be understood.
        The last note appeals most to the argument; extremists do best in locations that have longer traditions of "all or nothing" totalitarian regimes. Second to that, "easy picking" can be found in weak and/or corrupt republics (Wiemar Republic, Venezuela before Hugo Chavez). The least fertile ground is found in stronger republics. If Berlin or the area formerly known as the Federal Republic of Germany has fewer problems, it is because it has a longer history of a strong representative democracy. It seems the particular brand of dictatorship (left or right) matters much less than how long people tolerated the practice.

        Along with your mention of a post-riot analysis of mistakes (or corruption) by gov't. officials, the other question I have is, "What other consequences might there be for the leaders of the extremists?". At Charlottesville, at least one of the leaders was hit in his pocketbook. Link:
        Another lawsuit, filed by Georgetown's Institute for Constitutional Advocacy and Protection, alleged that the armed paramilitary groups at the rally were unlawful. Kessler and several of those groups recently agreed to a settlement, which stipulates that Kessler must "actively discourage" that sort of activity.
        https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/...lle/796998002/

        Two of the things I love most about a good republic's response to extremists: Their misdeeds are first detailed in long and embarrassing court proceeding, then they are made to pay for it. They lose the drama their followers were looking for, and the leadership is stuck trying to collect more money from the same, disappointed audience.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by radcentr View Post
          The last note appeals most to the argument; extremists do best in locations that have longer traditions of "all or nothing" totalitarian regimes. Second to that, "easy picking" can be found in weak and/or corrupt republics (Wiemar Republic, Venezuela before Hugo Chavez). The least fertile ground is found in stronger republics. If Berlin or the area formerly known as the Federal Republic of Germany has fewer problems, it is because it has a longer history of a strong representative democracy. It seems the particular brand of dictatorship (left or right) matters much less than how long people tolerated the practice.

          Along with your mention of a post-riot analysis of mistakes (or corruption) by gov't. officials, the other question I have is, "What other consequences might there be for the leaders of the extremists?". At Charlottesville, at least one of the leaders was hit in his pocketbook. Link:

          https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/...lle/796998002/

          Two of the things I love most about a good republic's response to extremists: Their misdeeds are first detailed in long and embarrassing court proceeding, then they are made to pay for it. They lose the drama their followers were looking for, and the leadership is stuck trying to collect more money from the same, disappointed audience.

          "Strong republics" are usually characterized by two features :

          a) Effective electoral and representative systems and a "republican consensus". All political parties with the exception of the AFD ( of course), representing about 87 % of the electorate, from the democratic right till the Communists, have unequivocally condemned the Chemnitz incidents. No "good guys on both sides". And parliament debates now an initiative to order domestic intelligence observation of the AFD.

          b) Strong civic societies. Under the slogan "Wir sind mehr" ( "We are more") around 50 000, according to some souces 65 000 people have gathered in downtown Chemnitz today to listen to a free concert by six of Germanys most popular bands, from Punkrock till Hiphop. The concert does explicitly not promote any political view but a rejection of Naziism :

          https://www.dw.com/en/chemnitz-rocks...ght/a-45332340


          https://www.scmp.com/news/world/europe/article/2162603/about-50000-attend-chemnitz-anti-racism-concert-angela-merkel


          Its not about a fight pitting left against right, but everyone with normal decency regardless of their political stripe standing up against the far-right mob, said Campino, the lead singer of punk band Die Toten Hosen.
          Last edited by Voland; 2 weeks ago.

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          • #6
            Breaking developments on this story, this one goes into detail about one administrator in German intelligence falling short of the target. Link:
            But Maassen called the authenticity of the video into question, prompting widespread condemnation from the Social Democrats (SPD), the Left and Green parties, which said that it was irresponsible to make such a claim without giving a reason or evidence for his opinion. He was also accused, not for the first time, of protecting the far-right.

            Interior Minister Seehofer told public broadcaster ARD on Sunday that while he thought Maassen was carrying out his job properly, he also thought it would be prudent for the intelligence chief to offer some proof.
            https://www.dw.com/en/german-far-rig...ief/a-45424025

            Maassen might well be very good at what he does, but he must provide proof if the video (of a right wing mob chasing down immigrants) was tampered with in some way. I don't know if Maassen is responsible for internal (national), external (international) intelligence. Or both? Any of the 3 being his responsibility, he is now under pressure to produce the evidence. Otherwise, he will be rightfully accused of letting his personal politics cloud his professional judgement. We have a phrase for that situation in the US. Usually it is applied to a colleague in a political party, when they commit an offense against the republic. In this case, it is a fringe group instead of a colleague of Maassen. The intelligence chief "failed to throw them under the bus". IOW, He appears to support a group that should instead receive a firm nudge into the busy traffic of public condemnation.

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            • #7
              Well, Mr. Maaen is the head of domestic intelligence. He is a career official, not a politician, yet he is considered to be staunchly on the right. Which does not speak against his professionalism yet doubts in his objectivity exist not just since a few days ago. He is f.e. considered to have given advice to the nationalist AFD party on how to avoid observation -- by his own house. He also led a crackdown on the militant hard left when the real problem has been laid open in Chemnitz.
              Yet the real clue as far as Maaens recent statement goes ( that he has rowed away from in the meantime) is who he reports to : Interior minister Seehofer of the bavarian CSU party, Merkels inner-coalition enemy. And his statement is fundamentally a stab at the chancellor. Who has condemned the Nazi mob attacks on "foreign" people, on a jewish restaurant, or on journalists, that are documentable from a multitude of sources, video footage and plenty of witness reports and that are not a matter of view. It is also a novelty that the public prosecutor in Dresden, who leads the investigation, has publicly contradicted the spy chief.
              This looks like a political intrigue that will mostly kill one job : Mr. Maaens. Since Merkel wont possibly leave him in his office after that, and not just because of Maaens attack on her. His office is essentially non-political and for a reason called "protection of the constitution". And if he cannot separate his own politics from his position ( he could at least have waited for the conclusion of the investigation), that he is not the right man for it (something that many believe anyway). And Seehofer seems to have lost the courage to defend him. Probably because is not a secret that the chancellor would like to see the back of him as well.

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              • #8
                So Mrs. Merkel has sacked the domestic intelligence chief over the Chemnitz incidents and his unfortunate remarks. Well, officially she has just transferred him to a post in the interior ministry.
                Although by that : a) She avoids turning him into a marthyr, especially for the far right b) It is a job with very little (pretty much no) exposure to the public, so Mr. Maaens political opinions are ...irrelevant c) she avoids a coalition conflict with the Social Democrats ( that have demanded his head and even questioned the coalition over it)


                https://www.thelocal.de/20180918/bre...rman-spy-chief


                Meanwhile police in Saxony have also waived the arrest warrant against one of the suspects in the Chemnitz stabbing, the other one remains in custody.



                https://www.dw.com/en/germany-iraqi-...sed/a-45543270
                Last edited by Voland; 2 days ago.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Voland View Post
                  So Mrs. Merkel has sacked the domestic intelligence chief over the Chemnitz incidents and his unfortunate remarks. Well, officially she has just transferred him to a post in the interior ministry.
                  Although by that : a) She avoids turning him into a marthyr, especially for the far right b) It is a job with very little (pretty much no) exposure to the public, so Mr. Maaens political opinions are ...irrelevant c) she avoids a coalition conflict with the Social Democrats ( that have demanded his head and even questioned the coalition over it)


                  https://www.thelocal.de/20180918/bre...rman-spy-chief


                  Meanwhile police in Saxony have also waived the arrest warrant against one of the suspects in the Chemnitz stabbing, the other one remains in custody.



                  https://www.dw.com/en/germany-iraqi-...sed/a-45543270
                  Good summaries on the links, thanks. In one day, Merkel has also turned down the heat from Seehofer. Immigration will continue to be an issue, of course, but a bit of heat from that issue might next be resolved by the humble police and public prosecutor in Chemnitz. If a drug deal were the setting and one or more convictions result, the details will take the wind out of AfD's speech: Such a trial would reveal the stabbing victim as a participant in an unsavory (and illegal) transaction, while justice imposed on the other parties closes the rest of the argument that the gov't. is weak in enforcing law for immigrants. Supposing it were a beer-soaked brawl (all parties having tipped too many) with dubious origins, that is also a less-than favorable argument to support the argument against immigration.

                  The only thing that might complicate the matter would be a variation on the stories, if the victim were sober, minding his own business, etc.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by radcentr View Post
                    Good summaries on the links, thanks. In one day, Merkel has also turned down the heat from Seehofer. Immigration will continue to be an issue, of course, but a bit of heat from that issue might next be resolved by the humble police and public prosecutor in Chemnitz. If a drug deal were the setting and one or more convictions result, the details will take the wind out of AfD's speech: Such a trial would reveal the stabbing victim as a participant in an unsavory (and illegal) transaction, while justice imposed on the other parties closes the rest of the argument that the gov't. is weak in enforcing law for immigrants. Supposing it were a beer-soaked brawl (all parties having tipped too many) with dubious origins, that is also a less-than favorable argument to support the argument against immigration.

                    The only thing that might complicate the matter would be a variation on the stories, if the victim were sober, minding his own business, etc.

                    A few points :

                    No, the Chemnitz riot was not about refugee policy/ immigration. It was the far right hijacking an unfortunate event (that is still under investigation, as demonstrated by the release of one of the suspects).
                    Noone needs to march under swastika flags, attack police, chase real or alleged migrants in the streets and shout Nazi slogans to make any particular (serious) point about immigration. And who marches among people of that kind has to accept beeing counted in their corner of the political spectre.
                    Also the vicious attack on the jewish restaurant in Chemnitz wasnt carried out by muslim extremists. And again had zero, sod all to do with any fake anger about any particular policy. Or a death under investigation :


                    https://www.dw.com/en/jewish-restaur...sts/a-45406856


                    Mr. Seehofer is not only the interior minister, he is also the chairman of the bavarian separatist CSU party. On the federal level his party forms a parliamentary union with Merkels CDU AND is part of the coalition with the Social Democrats. The CSUs power recipe was for a long time to help conservative governements in the saddle in Berlin and in return to obtain privileges or at least high level representation for Bavaria at the governement table ( the CSU was part of each conservative governement since 1949).
                    Yet like many things also that is changing. The CSU, that for decades governed with absolute majorities ( there is the old joke "in Bavaria we dont need an opposition, we already have democracy") has a bavarian election coming up in October ( and stands at around 35 %, which means that at least itll have to share power with a partner. Which will also diminish its weight in Berlin. And will cost Mr. Seehofer his party job. At least.).
                    The reasons for that are mostly rooted in local politics and are rather familiar for any party that has kept power for too long : Such as nepotism, political and institutional corruption and the desire to have something new. Forget the refugee issue for a moment. It is a mistake to view Germany through a Brexit/Trump lense.
                    That is why Mr. Seehofer is currently playing the enfant terrible in the Berlin coalition. He is trying to lure back ( according to polls largely unsucessfully) bavarian (!) voters to his party and fighting for his political survival. I could imagine that Mrs. Merkel waits impatiently for October 13th






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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Voland View Post


                      A few points :

                      No, the Chemnitz riot was not about refugee policy/ immigration. It was the far right hijacking an unfortunate event (that is still under investigation, as demonstrated by the release of one of the suspects).
                      Noone needs to march under swastika flags, attack police, chase real or alleged migrants in the streets and shout Nazi slogans to make any particular (serious) point about immigration. And who marches among people of that kind has to accept beeing counted in their corner of the political spectre.
                      Also the vicious attack on the jewish restaurant in Chemnitz wasnt carried out by muslim extremists. And again had zero, sod all to do with any fake anger about any particular policy. Or a death under investigation :


                      https://www.dw.com/en/jewish-restaur...sts/a-45406856


                      Mr. Seehofer is not only the interior minister, he is also the chairman of the bavarian separatist CSU party. On the federal level his party forms a parliamentary union with Merkels CDU AND is part of the coalition with the Social Democrats. The CSUs power recipe was for a long time to help conservative governements in the saddle in Berlin and in return to obtain privileges or at least high level representation for Bavaria at the governement table ( the CSU was part of each conservative governement since 1949).
                      ...
                      The reasons for that are mostly rooted in local politics and are rather familiar for any party that has kept power for too long : Such as nepotism, political and institutional corruption and the desire to have something new. Forget the refugee issue for a moment. It is a mistake to view Germany through a Brexit/Trump lense.
                      That is why Mr. Seehofer is currently playing the enfant terrible in the Berlin coalition. He is trying to lure back ( according to polls largely unsucessfully) bavarian (!) voters to his party and fighting for his political survival. I could imagine that Mrs. Merkel waits impatiently for October 13th

                      Were I Seehofer, I would be nervous about the Chemnitz prosecutor's public statements about the case that (supposedly) started this latest mess. Separating a base criminal act from an alleged national crisis in immigration, paints Seehofer into the same corner in which Maassen found himself. -Very crowded, with very unsavory company as you note. With Seehofer in that delicate position, it is curious why he risked courting the extreme right as he did, especially under this circumstance.

                      Was that an act of desperation to bump votes for CSU by any means? ...Or was it a case of becoming too comfortable, CSU accustomed to easy wins in Bavaria for so many decades? If the CSU believes it will be able to "handle" AfD in a coalition, it should dust off some history books and study that position with great care.

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