Understanding how Hitler became German helps us deal with modern-day extremists

This is an interesting read in light of what could be in store with the AfD entering a coalition government in a German state. After all, history repeats itself and not always as a farce.

Excerpt from The Conversation.

The role of Braunschweig

How the Nazis rose to power begins in Braunschweig, a small state in Germany.

Hitler had his mind firmly set on attaining political power in Germany. But he faced a problem: He did not have German citizenship — in fact, he was a state-less immigrant living in Germany.

Hitler was born in Austria, moved to Munich in 1913 and revoked his Austrian citizenship in 1925 to avoid being extradited back to his native country. The normal path to German citizenship was cumbersome and uncertain — and Hitler had a major criminal record, after all, due to his involvement in what’s known as the Beer Hall Putsch of 1923.

The issue became urgent when Hitler wanted to run in the 1932 German presidential election. At the time, his party, the NSDAP (Nazi party) shared power in only one of the German states, the small northern free state of Braunschweig (known as Brunswick in English). Hitler therefore asked his party members in Braunschweig to get him citizenship.

Politics in the state of Braunschweig was more polarized than national politics. The state included a substantive urban working class, traditional small businesses and large rural districts. Nationally, German politics of the 1920s was characterized by a succession of multi-party governments bringing together social democrats (SPD) with parties of the centre and centre right.

In Braunschweig, the SPD governed as a majority from 1927 to 1930 under Prime Minister Heinrich Jasper. The centrist and centre-right parties and representatives of small businesses in the state formed an alliance. They viewed the SPD as their main opponent in the 1930 state election, and resented, among other things, the appointment of SPD members to positions in state administration, schools and the university.

Coalition with Nazis

When the SPD lost its majority in the election while the Nazis rose to third place, the alliance parties formed a coalition with Hitler’s party. This coalition government gave the Nazi party the position of speaker of Parliament and minister of the interior.

The Nazis used these positions to effectively promote their interests, and despite various crises, the coalition held on until 1933. Dietrich Klagges, the minister of the interior from 1931, used his position to harass political opposition, undermine democratic processes, intervene in internal matters of the university, and — critically — to give Hitler his German citizenship.

Election results in Braunschweig and Germany, 1918-1933. Klaus Meyer, Author provided

Full article here.

Some accuse Bavarian judicial establishment of secrecy and lack of transparency.

“Restitution work is alive and well”, says Christopher Marinello in a video and that was directed straight at Germany. That translates into PAY, Germany.

Prozess um Doppelmord von KraillingBut before we delve a little more into this sordid new thing coming straight out of Munich, launchpad of A. Hitler, it might sound interesting to hear the speaker of the Upper Court of Munich.

Before the cameras speaker Mr. Andreas Titz professes that  details of the trove found in Munich in 2011, gee that’s 2 years ago,  although the German FAZ says it was 2012 which makes it even more mysterious, “is due to the nature of this case at present classified.” What, those paintings were found during a police raid 2 years ago! Still classified?

Well, so much from Munich’s court on this. Let’s look how this was published on the Focus website and Paul Murphy from FT Alphaville has the scoop. The placement of the article is not bad, for example right above some big tits in the Panorama section.

FT Alphaville

FT Alphaville

Murphy is somewhat incredulous: “Is that credible, that in-the-loop art historians have been keeping mum about a secret €1bn prize hoard of Impressionist fare for more than two years? And no one in the police blabbed, or anyone else in the German establishment? Did the major auction houses know? Is there a case for a Stewards into the art market here??”

Well Paul, one answer might be this is Munich and this is the Munich justice system. How about this here from 1980?

Anyway, then there is a certain Mrs. Meike Hoffmann.

FT Alphaville:

Hoffmann is an expert in “degenerate art.” In fact she runs the Degenerate Art Research Centre at Freie Universität. See these previously designated degenerate sculptures she helped uncover three years back.

The Guardian tried to get in touch with her for some information on the art pieces:

Since their seizure, they have been stored in a safe customs building outside Munich, where the art historian Meike Hoffmann, from Berlin university, has been assessing their precise origin and value. When contacted by the Guardian, Hoffmann said she was under an obligation to maintain secrecy and would not be able to comment on the Focus report until Monday.

Why all this secrecy? Might it come to light that German authorities were in cahoots, knew everything? Want to keep the loot? Bavaria is certainly a seedy place.

Anne Webber, founder and co-chair of the commission for Looted Art in Europe.

“It’s actually been two and a half years since these paintings were found, and they’ve been kept completely secret. And there are some very hard questions for the Bavarian government about why they’ve kept this list secret.”

“We need to ask why they haven’t published a list of all the paintings that have been found, so that the families who are looking for their paintings – and have been looking for the past 75 years – can find them, and have them returned to them,” she added.

Here is more on Bavaria in the Telegraph:

“There is a culture of secrecy in Bavaria, and other parts of Germany – but particularly there. We need a culture of transparency and to return these works as quickly as possible.”

She said that many people who dealt with looted Nazi art were interrogated after the war, but claimed that they didn’t have anything.

They then continued to sell the works – “trading it, laundering it, particularly in Bavaria,” said Mrs Webber.

You have to wonder what is behind the extreme reluctance to provide information,” says Anne Webber, of the London-based Commission for Looted Art in Europe. “We have reminded the Bavarian authorities of the need for transparency and requested a full list of the works. So far we have had no response.

“Germany was a signatory to the Washington Principles in 1998 and 1999, along with 44 other countries, making a commitment to identifying the looted works in their collections and publishing the results. Bavarian state collections contain thousands of works acquired during the Nazi period, but they have failed to publish any list. An annotated catalogue of one of the main dealers of the Nazi era was discovered, saying which families the works were taken from and their eventual owners. This would be fantastically useful to the families concerned who are hoping to create a link with their past. This also hasn’t been published.”

The Telegraph gets it right about rotten Bavaria, they are racists:

It is tempting to see this apparent blocking by the Bavarian authorities as something more than the embarrassment that characterises Germany’s official response to its 20th-century past: bloody-mindedness, perhaps, or even belligerence. Bavaria is synonymous, certainly from a British perspective, with social and political conservatism. Munich, though it was an avant garde stronghold early in the century – home to Klee and Kandinsky – provided the platform for Hitler’s rise to power. You don’t have to dig too far below the surface in this part of Germany to encounter an attitude of “what more do these Jews want from us”.

Yet this apparently wilful obfuscation regarding the return of looted works of art is far from exclusively Bavarian. Webber quotes culture minister Bernd Neumann, who declared recently that until the thousands of looted art works in German museums are returned to their owners, there can be no line drawn under this issue. Hanover’s Sprengel Museum, for example, home of the largest collection of the works of Kurt Schwitters, one of the most notable of the banned “degenerate” artists, has yet to publish a list of contested works. The head of the German Museums Association recently went on record as saying that the reluctance to publish lists of works is tied to the likelihood of large numbers of claims.

Whole Telegraph article here

Top German Police Officer: ‘Anyone On The Internet Has Left The Private Sphere’

The Internet as a mass medium is still relatively young, so it’s no surprise that its function in society and in our daily lives is still being defined. One important question concerns the nature of our actions online: to what extent are they public? Here’s one rather extreme view, expressed by Jürgen Maurer, vice-president of Germany’s Federal Criminal Police Office, as reported by Der Spiegel (original in German):

Anyone on the Internet has left the private sphere, and finds themselves in a kind of public sphere.

Suck my fucking dick, you German prick!