The political party Alternative for Germany (AfG) has won seats in the German Bundestag for the first time. This is the first time since WWII that a far right party has obtained enough votes (12.6%) to garner representatives in Parliament (94 out of 709). What does it mean for Germany, for Europe and for the Jews?
The big loser in the election was Chancellor Angela Merkel’s center-right party the Christian Democrats. Their share of the vote went down, although they are still the largest party and they will of course have to form a coalition government. But, the AfG will not be in the coalition. Their main attraction for voters, especially the disaffected unemployed in former East Germany is their anti-immigrant stance.
I watched a program on BBC’s Panorama about the kind of supporters that the AfG is attracting. This concerned the small town of Freital in Saxony, East Germany. There have been regular demonstrations there, some that have been violent, by right wing and neo-Nazi groups against the migrants that Chancellor Merkel allowed to enter Germany in large numbers (over 1 million). Many people in Freital are out of work or on the dole and naturally resent the financial help given to the migrants, particularly by left-wing organizations. The program focused on one small group of right-wing radicals that called themselves the Freital Group. They carried out 5 increasingly violent attacks against migrants and their supporters.
The striking thing was that the local police did essentially nothing to either find them or stop them. And all the time they were meeting at a gas station opposite the police station in Freital. It was only when their last attack blew out the windows of a migrant shelter and injured several people that the Federal Police got involved. They immediately labelled this a terrorist attack, which it was, and they arrested the ring-leaders. They were charged with various crimes and sentenced with up to 10 years in jail. The Federal Government was making the statement that demonstrations will be tolerated, but violent attacks will not.
However, with the winning of seats in the Bundestag by the AfG perhaps the situation will change and worsen. This matters little to the Jews, of whom there are only a very small number in Germany and very few in East Germany. But, it means a lot for the million migrants in Germany. As I warned them, we Jews know what the Germans are capable of. If things get stirred up, and the Germans have a tendency to blame others for their own problems, then it could go bad for the Muslims. And if the AfG becomes powerful enough, you could even see a coup and the (re)institution of concentration camps in Germany, preparatory to getting rid of this problem. As far as I am concerned “a pox on both their houses.”