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Neonazi Terrorism in Germany

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  • kato
    replied
    The presidents of the domestic intelligence service (BVS) and military intelligence service (MAD) have had to give their joint annual public report to the parliamantary intelligence oversight committee today. This annual report is the only public session of the intelligence oversight committee, their other work is classified.

    MAD is currently handling 1397 suspect cases for extremism - for scale, in the calendar year 2019 they had 363 cases and in 2020 477 cases.
    BVS reports that they're "not rarely" finding members of armed security forces - military and police - in "pertinent networks" they're observing, and consider the situation "worrying" as these people would also have access to classified information and after all are armed. Both agencies are also tasked with counterespionage.

    While both agencies see their current "primary task" and the primary "dangerous group" to be right-wing extremism, they consider the increased caseload more an effect of increased public attention to the topic though.


    The federal intelligence service (BND) president also had to report, but his agency isn't working in that field. He was mostly being defensive over the Afghanistan collapse in his report.

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  • kato
    replied
    Deutsche Welle article on that last one: https://www.dw.com/en/german-police-...der/a-59610055

    And our good old US propaganda version which mentions it but fails completely to tie its article subject to it: https://www.rferl.org/a/germany-pola.../31527854.html

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  • kato
    replied
    Police arrested about 50 adherents of the right-wing extremist party "III. Weg" (Third Way) last night on the Polish border.

    The group was following a "call" by the party to "deter immigrants" with patrols along the border. Police confiscated machetes, a bayonet, pepper spray and batons. The "call" was known ahead of course, there were German and Polish borderguards as well as state police forces waiting for them.

    Given the rather open national-socialist allegiance of the group and the current immigrant thing being about Belarus it's probably not all that coincidental that this took place in the area where the 1st Belarussian Front crossed the Neiße river into Germany on their way to Berlin on April 16th 1945.

    In the federal election about a month ago the party managed to get a grand total of 0.017%.

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  • kato
    replied
    A group of nine men is currently being investigated for forming an armed militia. The charges by now include a racist motive for the group, intending to attack immigrants.

    The group was led by a reserve colonel, a former paratrooper who publicly exhibited a faible for militaria. Three others were also reservists, three were civilian employees of the Bundeswehr, supposedly including contractors working in base security.

    The colonel was separately from these investigations found by MAD to be in close contact with a staffer at the Ministry of Defense (mayor-rank-equivalent, with high-classification access in particular on KSK and MAD operations) who is now suspended with him and his whole department investigated. Due to the overall security relevance of this connection and the overall group they're also now a bit tight-lipped towards the press.

    Police searched 8 separate estates belonging to members of the group three weeks ago, as well as a hidden weapons depot found a week later, During these searches weapons, weapons parts and ammunition were found "of which a substantial part has to be evaluated first" (i.e. they confiscated a bunch of collector pieces, presumably WW2, which have to be evaluated as to whether they're e.g. re-activated or otherwise illegal).

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  • kato
    replied

    The Army finally got some legal recourse against a right-wing extremist:
    • there's a retired colonel who is active among the Querdenker crowd since at least spring this year
    • among other things he got on their soapbox and spouted lines like "they should send the KSK to Berlin to clean up in parliament"
    • he is under observation by both domestic intelligence and (as a former soldier) by its military counterpart MAD
    • with limited recourse so far the Bundeswehr had issued a uniform ban for him and removed him from reserve exercises
    During the floods in Ahrweiler a Querdenker group seized a semi-destroyed school building and organized an "assistance center" there. Mostly along the lines of taking care for children while their parents cleaned up the destroyed homes and distributing some supplies and such. With a good helping of propaganda of course. The group also dressed up a car to look like a police car and started driving through the disaster area spouting conspiracy theories over loudspeakers. Police closed the whole place down after a few days and forcibly evicted them.

    Now, this colonel was among these guys. In uniform. In a leading position. He also published something online "ordering" other reservists and Querdenker to come to the area to join the group - cosigned by Bodo Schiffmann (a doctor from this area who fled to South Africa, then Tanzania due to "persecution" over his stance on lockdowns), Michael Ballweg (leader of the political Querdenken movement, i think we've had him somewhere in this thread), Frank Horn (a reservist running a Telegram chat group of 7000 Querdenker) and Karl Hilz (a retired Bavarian police officer with Reichsbürger stances). There were a few dozen people who ... tried to follow that order. They were kind of intercepted by roadblocks where conveniently besides police also military police was deployed. There was a apparently an attempt to "civilianize" the effort afterwards, in the sense of trying to hide involvement of these reservist Querdenker groups.

    For the other three guys: Horn probably wasn't a co-signer due to the 7,000-person support (there were people with more reach in the place), but because he basically calls for the government to be removed and is by political direction a Day-X-Prepper Reichsbürger. Hilz, the police officer, has a disciplinary trial ongoing against him for similar things. Schiffmann finances the whole thing by collecting "donations", about 700,000 Euro for this particular action (except Paypal just locked his account and that money this week...). All of them are under observation and have been for a while of course.


    Well, yeah, anyway. There goes his pension now. Said colonel is now charged with unlawful assumption of public authority. And violating the uniform ban of course.

    On August 1st the same people organized a rally in Berlin, the action in Ahrweiler was partially structured around drumming up support for that. During that rally 967 people were arrested, 75 police officers injured (which isn't that high, that's normal for rallies of that scale) and a 49-year-old died from a heart attack when police arrested him.


    Just for general context: The colonel in question used to work for KSK in 1996-1998 delivering war criminals from Bosnia to The Hague, and in 1999 was commander of Panzergrenadierbataillon 112 during its initial forced entry into Kosovo.

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  • Albany Rifles
    replied
    Yean Sinsheim was right up against an autobahn and hemmed in on other sides. Makes perfect sense.

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  • kato
    replied
    Originally posted by Albany Rifles View Post
    Didn't know about the Speyer Museum...been awhile since I was in Germany.
    They bought a former French military base in Speyer in 1990 when they could no longer expand in Sinsheim and basically opened a similar-sized operation to Sinsheim there. Focus there to a large extent postwar military aviation (almost complete collection of aircraft flown and retired by the Luftwaffe and NVA, along with selected allied combat aircraft that had been stationed in Germany) and some postwar naval history (with a Type 205 submarine and a civilian 44m SAR cruiser). In 2008 they opened a new space-focused exhibit centered around a Buran prototype that they had bought.

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  • Albany Rifles
    replied
    Originally posted by kato View Post
    Most of their newer "military" acquisitions since then have gone to their Speyer subsidiary museum, which basically doesn't do tanks. They have a great submarine collection though, and do some special event stuff (might go there next month, they're gonna have a flight day for some of their aircraft including their reactivated C-160 Transall from the airport right next to the museum).

    And the Historical Museum of the Palatinate which is virtually next door is currently hosting an exhibition on French troops garrisoned in Palatinate between 1945 and 1999 for the rest of the year.

    They're planning to reshuffle their collection between Sinsheim and Speyer currently due to the 40-year anniversary of the Sinsheim museum. Next submarine (a German Navy 500-ton Type 206 that they bought in 2018) is planned to directly go to Sinsheim. They're still working on demilitarizing that, and the overland transport will probably be quite the sight again.
    Didn't know about the Speyer Museum...been awhile since I was in Germany.

    From 1998 to 2003 I spent a lot of time on Germany...like 3 out of every 5 weeks...so on weekends I went and visited a bunch of stuff.

    I was in Kaiserslautern-Ramstein for a month in winter 2017 but on our time off we headed up into the Ardennes Battlefields.

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  • kato
    replied
    Originally posted by Albany Rifles View Post
    When I visited it in....*gulp*....2005(?) they seamed to have a fairly robust military display.
    Most of their newer "military" acquisitions since then have gone to their Speyer subsidiary museum, which basically doesn't do tanks. They have a great submarine collection though, and do some special event stuff (might go there next month, they're gonna have a flight day for some of their aircraft including their reactivated C-160 Transall from the airport right next to the museum).

    And the Historical Museum of the Palatinate which is virtually next door is currently hosting an exhibition on French troops garrisoned in Palatinate between 1945 and 1999 for the rest of the year.

    They're planning to reshuffle their collection between Sinsheim and Speyer currently due to the 40-year anniversary of the Sinsheim museum. Next submarine (a German Navy 500-ton Type 206 that they bought in 2018) is planned to directly go to Sinsheim. They're still working on demilitarizing that, and the overland transport will probably be quite the sight again.
    Last edited by kato; 04 Aug 21,, 21:10.

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  • Albany Rifles
    replied
    Originally posted by kato View Post
    They have way too little space for that kind of stuff - and their focus is mostly on old cars.
    When I visited it in....*gulp*....2005(?) they seamed to have a fairly robust military display.

    But I also remember near Hagenau in France there was an old Siegfried Line/Maginot Line fort museumthat had a bunch of WW 2 & Cold War vehicles & aircraft. They even had Erich Honecker's MI-8 helicopter!

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  • kato
    replied
    Originally posted by Albany Rifles View Post
    I wonder if Technik Museum Sinsheim can get their hands on the stuff. That was one impressive place.
    They have way too little space for that kind of stuff - and their focus is mostly on old cars.

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  • Albany Rifles
    replied
    I wonder if Technik Museum Sinsheim can get their hands on the stuff. That was one impressive place.

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  • kato
    replied
    Originally posted by tbm3fan View Post
    Interesting when compared to this guy in the Bay Area years ago with one of the largest private collections of armor in the world with many running and others under restoration.
    When those laws where changed press did look around for comparable collectors in Germany.

    There's one guy who owns around 80 wrecks of tanks, all of them demilitarized and no longer able to drive. He is somewhat notorious in the scene, was actually sentenced for stealing a WW2 tank wreck in Bulgaria about 15 years ago. He had to move his collection to an undisclosed location in East Germany after the original place he had that scrapheap in evicted him for illegally building without permits on his property. They're literal wrecks, and he has in the past donated parts of them sought after to Panzermuseum Munster.

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  • tbm3fan
    replied
    Originally posted by kato View Post

    As for why he has to sell the tank now, it's because in 2018 due to his case they changed laws pretty much to exactly address cases like his. In order to own and handle a demilitarized tank that can still drive you need a permit which is pretty much subject to the goodwill of authorities and effectively only issued to museums and similar. It is allowed to keep previously owned drivable demilitarized tanks legally by shifting them into another category - to do that they propose removing their engine and having the cavity filled with a solid cast metal block. The anti-aircraft gun he could technically also keep, although he'd also need a (usually shall-issue) permit for that. Since he is now convicted for illegal arms possession he wouldn't be getting that permit either.
    Interesting when compared to this guy in the Bay Area years ago with one of the largest private collections of armor in the world with many running and others under restoration. I visited the place in the early oughts. As said he died young (59) from cancer and so his collection was broken up. Broken up as in scattered to different museums.


    https://www.paloaltoonline.com/news/...ttlefield-dies
    Last edited by tbm3fan; 04 Aug 21,, 17:27.

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  • kato
    replied
    Originally posted by tbm3fan View Post
    I have read in other places that the man had purchased these items and not from some black market but on the open market sometime ago. If that were true, and they were bought in Germany, then how is he guilty of anything.
    The tank was bought as scrap in the UK (in the 1970s), imported to Germany with a claim of having been demilitarized, and was then refurbished to resemble its original state over the next years to decades.

    The problem is that the documentation for the tank and its demilitarization (requires permanently plugging the gun, and thin sheet mock armor over specific parts) is incomplete and to some extent missing completely. On examination the tank was ruled as not properly demilitarized under German laws.

    Originally posted by tbm3fan View Post
    why the big deal now?
    Police started investigating him after some nazi art reappeared in various investigations, and in his case found a pair of bronze horses that "disappeared" from a Soviet base in East Germany in the early 90s where they had been stored. So, on-site deeper investigations.

    Detail article on that art part (NYT): https://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/26/w...by-hitler.html

    Due to the investigations they found his "collection" of various weapons, including the tank, an anti-aircraft gun, a torpedo, a mortar, several machine guns and such. And of course once they had found those they started checking into documentation on whether he legally owned those. Which he could not provide for some of these items.

    The fine itself is part of the plea deal. He could also have had the court run the full trial, upon which he would have likely ended up in prison then. The guy has the money to buy himself out of that basically, but it's an amount where it hurts somewhat and he's still sentenced to a probationary term.

    As for why he has to sell the tank now, it's because in 2018 due to his case they changed laws pretty much to exactly address cases like his. In order to own and handle a demilitarized tank that can still drive you need a permit which is pretty much subject to the goodwill of authorities and effectively only issued to museums and similar. It is allowed to keep previously owned drivable demilitarized tanks legally by shifting them into another category - to do that they propose removing their engine and having the cavity filled with a solid cast metal block. The anti-aircraft gun he could technically also keep, although he'd also need a (usually shall-issue) permit for that. Since he is now convicted for illegal arms possession he wouldn't be getting that permit either.
    Last edited by kato; 03 Aug 21,, 21:03.

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