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Is Germany’s Domestic Intelligence Agency Protecting neo-Nazis?

Thuringian Nazis rob­bing a bank, the old way.

COMMENT: Ger­many’s domes­tic intel­li­gence ser­vice is sup­posed to fight Nazis, not pro­tect them. Yet Der Spiegel informs us that just such a sit­u­a­tion is sus­pect­ed by observers of a Nazi crime wave imple­ment­ed over about a decade and a half.

As dis­cussed in a pre­vi­ous Der Spiegel sto­ry, col­lu­sion between Nazis and ele­ments of Ger­man intel­li­gence and law enforce­ment are not unknown.

Note that two of the sus­pects were found dead, appar­ent sui­cides. In The Turn­er Diaries, it is made clear that, rather than be cap­tured, par­tic­i­pants in Nazi oper­a­tions [crimes] are to com­mit sui­cide, rather than fall into the hands of the author­i­ties.

“The Bomb-Mak­ers of Jena: Sus­pects in Bizarre Case Iden­ti­fied as neo-Nazis” by Julia Jut­tnwer, Birg­er Menke and Chris­t­ian Teeves; Der Spiegel; 11/10/2011.

EXCERPT: . . . .  Arrest war­rants were issued, but none of the sus­pects were detained. Although they had already been under obser­va­tion pri­or to the house search­es, Uwe B., Uwe M. and Beate Z. were able to evade cap­ture.

But how, some are now ask­ing? In Thuringia’s left-wing, anti-fas­cist (or “antifa”) scene, the trio became known as “the Bomb Mak­ers of Jena.” The neo-Nazi pop band Eichen­laub released a song called “Why” that amount­ed to an homage to the three fugi­tives.

Some believe they had orga­nized sup­port dur­ing their 13 years under­ground. But from whom? Per­haps the far-right scene, per­haps orga­nized crime; per­haps — most con­tro­ver­sial­ly — from Thuringia’s state Office for the Pro­tec­tion of the Con­sti­tu­tion (which should be fight­ing neo-Nazis). Some inves­ti­ga­tors claim the three were in pos­ses­sion of sev­er­al fake pass­ports.

In any case, inves­ti­ga­tors claim to have lost all trace of them after 1998 — that is, until last Sat­ur­day, when the bod­ies of both men were found in a trail­er in Eise­nach. It appears that Uwe B. and Uwe M. robbed a bank togeth­er and then shot each oth­er to death. . . .

. . . On Tues­day, the Thuringia state Office for the Pro­tec­tion of the Con­sti­tu­tion released a state­ment that there was “no evi­dence (the sus­pects) received help in their flight from gov­ern­ment author­i­ties.” The same went for “intel­li­gence coop­er­a­tion between the sus­pects and Thuringia state Office for the Pro­tec­tion of the Con­sti­tu­tion.” Thuringia’s state inte­ri­or min­is­ter, Jörg Geib­ert, said, “There’s no evi­dence they had any more con­tact with the far-right scene in Thuringia, or that they were pro­vid­ed with mon­ey or weapons.”

Mar­ti­na Ren­ner, a rank­ing Left Par­ty mem­ber in the state par­lia­ment, doubts these find­ings. “I think it’s quite unlike­ly that those three lived for 10 years in Ger­many with­out hav­ing their cov­er blown.” Even in 1998, she alleged — when the man­hunt began — there were hints that the state’s con­sti­tu­tion­al pro­tec­tion office had helped them dis­ap­pear.

Ren­ner says their alleged crimes even before 1998 were not just “pet­ty crimes,” but could have involved “explo­sions” of a “life-threat­en­ing mag­ni­tude.” She says it’s impor­tant to clar­i­fy just how deeply the state domes­tic intel­li­gence office may have been involved. If a region­al intel­li­gence agency like that is pre­pared to “work with” such dan­ger­ous crim­i­nals, she says, the ques­tion aris­es whether the agency func­tions as an instru­ment to pro­tect a democ­ra­cy. . . .

Discussion

13 comments for “Is Germany’s Domestic Intelligence Agency Protecting neo-Nazis?”

  1. The Nazi line has con­tin­ued unbro­ken, except for the odd death of aged lead­ers; now slimmed down arrange­ments for escape still in place; orig­i­nal plans worked out very suc­cess­ful­ly with Ger­many now atop the smoul­der­ing heap to which they have reduced Europe

    Posted by harry Beckhough | November 13, 2011, 1:50 am
  2. Indeed, Mr. Beck­hough! Thanks so much for keep­ing up with this web­site.

    Get­ting across the mes­sage that the Third Reich did­n’t lose the war(economically and polit­i­cal­ly) is not easy.

    Some recent posts on that gen­er­al sub­ject:

    Fran­cois Mitterand’s Fas­cist Past and the For­ma­tion of the Euro­pean Mon­e­tary Union

    Democ­ra­cy? Nichte! [Not!]

    His­to­ry Teach­es Us that We Learn Noth­ing from His­to­ry

    Your input is very much appre­ci­at­ed, sir!

    The great­est respect to you for your work over the years, from Bletch­ley Park onward!

    Posted by Dave Emory | November 13, 2011, 11:48 am
  3. @Dave: Hey there. I just read all those. Fan­tas­tic work as usu­al.

    And to Mr. Beck­hough: Thank you for all the good that you have done in your life. I wish you well. =)

    Posted by Steven L. | November 13, 2011, 12:16 pm
  4. Here’s an arti­cle from May about anoth­er case from the Fed­er­al Office for the Proec­tion of the Con­sti­tu­tion:

    17.05.2011
    Ger­many impos­es caveats on ter­ror­ist intel flow to the US

    A press report says that the Ger­man gov­ern­ment has been lim­it­ing the flow of intel­li­gence to the CIA fol­low­ing the killing of a Ger­man cit­i­zen by a US drone. Crit­ics say it is just cov­er­ing its back.

    The odd, unre­solved case of Bünyamin E. is cast­ing a long legal shad­ow. New signs have emerged that the death last fall of this 20-year-old from a vil­lage in west­ern Ger­many has caused obstruc­tions in the flow of intel­li­gence between Ger­many and the US.
    Angela Merkel’s gov­ern­ment is reluc­tant to talk about Bünyamin E., but accord­ing to a report on Sun­day in news mag­a­zine Der Spiegel, the Inte­ri­or Min­istry is lim­it­ing the amount of intel­li­gence it pass­es on to the CIA as a direct con­se­quence of his death — described by oppo­si­tion par­ties as an extra­ju­di­cial assas­si­na­tion.
    Death on a remote moun­tain
    Bünyamin E. was a Turk­ish-Ger­man 20-year-old who was killed — along with sev­er­al oth­er sus­pect­ed Islamists — by a US drone on Octo­ber 4, 2010, in Waziris­tan, a remote region on the Afghanistan — Pak­istan bor­der.
    Raised in Wup­per­tal in the state of North Rhine-West­phalia, he had been under obser­va­tion by the BKA, Ger­many’s equiv­a­lent of the FBI, as a ter­ror­ist sus­pect, though there was no arrest war­rant out on him. He had report­ed­ly been close­ly asso­ci­at­ed with Islamist groups, received com­bat train­ing in an Islamist camp in Uzbek­istan, and had been in Pak­istan and north­ern Afghanistan for sev­er­al weeks when he was killed.
    Since 2001, Ger­many has passed all infor­ma­tion about such ter­ror­ist sus­pects unfil­tered to the US. Accord­ing­ly, Der Spiegel claims that after Bünyamin E.‘s depar­ture from Ger­many in the sum­mer of 2010, the Fed­er­al Office for the Pro­tec­tion of the Con­sti­tu­tion — a Ger­man intel­li­gence agency that reports to the Inte­ri­or Min­istry — gave his mobile phone num­ber, the num­ber of a con­tact in Turkey, and an address of a café in Pak­istan to the US.

    The CIA alleged­ly used this infor­ma­tion to locate and kill Bünyamin, but the Inte­ri­or Min­istry denies this. Gov­ern­ment spokesman Jens Teschke told Deutsche Welle, “I can only say that the Ger­man secu­ri­ty author­i­ties did not pass on any infor­ma­tion to for­eign part­ners that led in any way to the killing in Waziris­tan.”
    ...

    Intel with a caveat
    Der Spiegel now claims that soon after Bünyamin E.‘s death, the Ger­man gov­ern­ment start­ed to attach a caveat to intel­li­gence it deliv­ered to the US. Accord­ing to this, Ger­man intel­li­gence can only be used to arrest, not kill, sus­pect­ed ter­ror­ists.

    ...

    Antho­ny Dworkin, an inter­na­tion­al jus­tice expert at the Euro­pean Coun­cil on For­eign Rela­tions, thinks the Ger­man gov­ern­ment may be try­ing to cov­er its back legal­ly. “It seems that the view with­in the Ger­man gov­ern­ment is that these drone attacks aren’t legal under their inter­pre­ta­tion of inter­na­tion­al law,” he told Deutsche Welle. “If you take that view, I think you have a legal oblig­a­tion to make sure any infor­ma­tion you use is not part of them.”
    Jelp­ke agrees, but she thinks the gov­ern­ment is more afraid of poten­tial court cas­es than is con­cerned about the rule of law. “The lim­i­ta­tions on pass­ing data to the US, as report­ed in Der Spiegel, clear­ly only serve as legal cov­er,” she said. “If the Ger­man secret ser­vices them­selves think that peo­ple whose data is trans­ferred to the US could become vic­tims of extra­ju­di­cial killings, then pass­ing on that infor­ma­tion has to be stopped. That is the rule of law.”
    Legal cov­er for assas­si­na­tion
    Dworkin also thinks the Ger­mans have no inten­tion of lim­it­ing coop­er­a­tion with the US. “It’s not at all sur­pris­ing,” he says. “I would guess the Ger­man author­i­ties are just try­ing to lim­it the com­pli­ca­tions.”
    ...

    The case of Bünyamin E. is in effect anoth­er illus­tra­tion of how the Amer­i­can “war on ter­ror” has cre­at­ed awk­ward legal grey areas in inter­na­tion­al law.
    ...

    Some­thing tells me that these legal com­pli­ca­tions over the use of mil­i­tary drones for offen­sive mil­i­tary oper­a­tions will prob­a­bly be worked out soon. One might even say it’s “absolute­ly essen­tial”.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | November 13, 2011, 8:19 pm
  5. @Harry Beck­hough

    It’s mar­velous see­ing you at almost a hun­dred years old and still ready to fight Nazism. Your con­tri­bu­tion to the com­pre­hen­sion of the events that are unfold­ing in Europe is price­less. Thank you for the ter­rif­ic work that you have done in all your life.

    @Dave Emory

    Yes it is hard to get accross the mes­sage that the Third Reich has sur­vived and con­tin­ued its activ­i­ties under­ground. I have tried a few times with friends and acquain­tances, and reac­tions range from denial, incom­pre­hen­sion, psy­cho­log­i­cal block, sub­li­ma­tion, short-term mem­o­ry prob­lems, refusal, etc. In short, either they refuse to accept the idea that it can be true, or they accept it for a few min­utes before the infor­ma­tion is repressed and buried some­where in the uncon­scious. In a way, it is under­stand­able. Because once some­body has accept­ed this, it is not some­thing that you can put aside eas­i­ly. For myself, I live with it every­day when I wake up and I think about it before falling asleep at night. That ele­ment is now part of my world. I won­der if the accep­ta­tion of this has some­thing to do with strength of char­ac­ter or hon­esty toward the facts.

    Any­way, thanks again to Mr Beck­hough. I join a video pre­sen­ta­tion of his, quite excep­tion­al in fact, on the mess in Europe. I urge all lis­ten­ers to watch that. The over­lap with Dav­e’s research is quite remark­able.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9LplCcxyPo4

    Con­tin­ue the fight.

    Posted by Claude | November 15, 2011, 11:45 am
  6. To Claude and Har­ry Beck­hough;

    We’ve just uploaded a new weapon for this fight:

    http://spitfirelist.com/?p=19353

    This book, along with oth­ers in the “Books for Down­load” sec­tion of the web­site may prove edu­ca­tion­al for the sin­cere­ly moti­vat­ed.

    In par­tic­u­lar, the dis­clo­sures that fol­lowed British intel’s dis­rup­tion of the Nau­mann coup may help to edu­cate peo­ple.

    Don’t despair Claude–it’s an easy thing to do, par­tic­u­lar­ly when you’re young.

    You may use Mr. Beck­hough’s exam­ple of per­se­ver­ance to moti­vate and inspire you.

    Keep Up the Fight;

    Dave Emory

    Posted by Dave Emory | November 15, 2011, 12:25 pm
  7. Thanks, Dave, you have just made my day. I will down­load that.

    By the way, for the lis­ten­ers who would be inter­est­ed, I have post­ed a book review of Mar­tin Bor­mann Nazi in Exile at this URL:

    http://lys-dor.com/book-review/paul-mannings-martin-bormann-nazi-in-exile/

    Like a famous base­ball man­ag­er said: “It’s not over until it not over”.

    Let’s every­body keep up the fight.

    Posted by Claude | November 15, 2011, 1:34 pm
  8. @Dave: Great! Will try to down­load ASAP, this book sounds inter­est­ing indeed. =)

    @Claude: That’s a good idea. More peo­ple need to know about ‘Herr’ Bor­mann and his lit­tle world dom­i­na­tion scheme.

    Posted by Steven l. | November 15, 2011, 7:56 pm
  9. kin­da ok PBS last night that touched on this sub­ject
    http://www.pbs.org/programs/elusive-justice/

    ...but it seems to me that most of these doc­u­men­taries kin­da miss the eco­nom­ic war that was going on, i.e. fas­cism
    thanks for all your work Dave.

    Posted by leif | November 16, 2011, 8:41 am
  10. http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/nov/15/germany-neo-nazi-terror-cell-doner-killings?newsfeed=true

    Ger­many shocked by secret ser­vice link to rightwing ter­ror cell

    EXCERPT: “... But so much of what has emerged so far does not quite make sense. Here are some ques­tions ordi­nary Ger­mans would like answer­ing:

    1. Why did Beate Zschäpe decide to turn her­self in to the police? Is she hop­ing to turn super­grass and give state’s evi­dence in return for a short­er sen­tence?

    2. Did Uwe Mund­los and Uwe Böhn­hardt real­ly kill them­selves? One man was shot in the head; anoth­er in the chest (the lat­ter is an unusu­al form of sui­cide). Could Zschäpe have mur­dered them both? Did they set fire to their camper­van before killing them­selves or did some­one else light the match after­wards?

    3. Why did the two men burn the mon­ey they had appar­ent­ly stolen from a Zwick­auer bank that day rather than give it to Zschäpe?

    4. How did the Pink Pan­ther con­fes­sion DVDs sur­vive flames in the tri­o’s Zwick­au flat despite tem­per­a­tures being so hot that inves­ti­ga­tors say they found melt­ed guns?

    5. How did the Nation­al Social­ist Under­ground choose their vic­tims? Were they all cho­sen at ran­dom?

    6. Can the group be linked to any oth­er unsolved crimes?

    7. Did the author­i­ties have any con­tact with the group dur­ing their 13 years on the run?

    8. Why did inves­ti­ga­tors look­ing into the nine so-called Don­er Killings blame for­eign mafia rather than prop­er­ly inves­ti­gat­ing rightwing hatred as a motive, con­sid­er­ing that all the vic­tims were immi­grants?”

    Posted by R. Wilson | November 19, 2011, 1:11 am
  11. More on this case:

    http://www.german-foreign-policy.com/en/fulltext/57975?PHPSESSID=mf0c36dgh2n7hdrkrjvf73d5q5

    It seems domes­tic Ger­man intel­li­gence agen­cies are found­ing neo-nazi groups to use them as “infor­mants”. But isn’t there any oth­er agen­da?

    Posted by Claude | November 20, 2011, 8:17 pm
  12. Oh look, far-right lunatics of dif­fer­ent reli­gious per­sua­sions are grasp­ing for the atten­tion they crave while engag­ing in a mutu­al ben­e­fi­cial recruit­ment cam­paign fight­ing:

    DW
    Extrem­ism
    Salafists and right-wingers fight it out
    23.05.2012

    A rad­i­cal Ger­man-born Islamist has called on Mus­lims to kill Ger­man politi­cians. The threats are aimed at the far-right par­ty Pro NRW, a region­al right-wing group in the west­ern state of North Rhine-West­phalia.

    The Pro NRW par­ty, which has been clas­si­fied as anti-con­sti­tu­tion­al because of its extrem­ist, right-wing ten­den­cies, has been rail­ing against non-Ger­mans and Mus­lims for years. The par­ty “rejects for­eign­ers because of their back­ground or faith and por­trays them as crim­i­nals,” accord­ing to a court rul­ing in the west­ern Ger­man city of Mün­ster.

    In recent weeks, Pro NRW has been con­cen­trat­ing its efforts on Salafists, Mus­lims who want to see a world-wide Islamist theoc­ra­cy. As part of its recent state elec­tion cam­paign in North Rhine-West­phalia, the par­ty dis­played posters show­ing the prophet Muham­mad as a ter­ror­ist.

    ...

    Death threats serve as pro­pa­gan­da

    The mur­der threat came from a young man who grew up in the west­ern Ger­man city of Bonn and who is now believed to live some­where near the Pak­istani-Afghan bor­der. He acts on behalf of the “Islam Move­ment of Uzbek­istan,” which is not known as a Salafist orga­ni­za­tion, but it is obvi­ous that his video has to do with the dis­pute between the Salafists in Ger­many and Pro NRW.

    Islam expert Clau­dia Dentschke argues this aggres­sive reac­tion is in fact help­ing Pro NRW. It is only through the con­fronta­tion with the Salafists, she says, that Pro NRW is now in the focus of pub­lic atten­tion.

    Yet the Salafists also prof­it from Pro NRW’s provo­ca­tions, as the con­fronta­tion gives them the oppor­tu­ni­ty to por­tray them­selves as the true fight­ers for Islam. Pro NRW on the oth­er hand can depict itself as pro­tect­ing “west­ern” or “Ger­man” val­ues.

    ...

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | May 23, 2012, 7:28 am
  13. http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/german-police-may-have-to-sharply-revise-figures-in-far-right-killings-a-937169.html

    Cold Cas­es: Ger­many May Revise Up Sta­tis­tics in Far-Right Killings
    Skin­heads in Ger­many: Offi­cials may rad­i­cal­ly revise the num­ber of peo­ple mur­dered in the coun­try by extrem­ists since 1990. Zoom
    DPA

    Skin­heads in Ger­many: Offi­cials may rad­i­cal­ly revise the num­ber of peo­ple mur­dered in the coun­try by extrem­ists since 1990.

    Ger­man author­i­ties may have to sharply revise sta­tis­tics for the num­ber of peo­ple killed by right-wing extrem­ists since 1990. The offi­cial fig­ure is around 60, but police comb­ing through unsolved cas­es have iden­ti­fied a fur­ther 746 sus­pi­cious slay­ings or attacks.

    Sta­tis­tics for the num­ber of peo­ple killed by right-wing extrem­ists in Ger­many since 1990 may have to be increased dra­mat­i­cal­ly, a news­pa­per report­ed on Wednes­day.

    Offi­cial­ly, author­i­ties cur­rent­ly say neo-Nazis have killed around 60 peo­ple, includ­ing the 10 most­ly Turk­ish immi­grants shot dead by the Nation­al Social­ist Under­ground (NSU) ter­ror­ist group between 2000 and 2007.

    Anti-racism groups and ana­lysts have long put the fig­ure much high­er, at close to 200. But even that may gross­ly under­state the true num­ber of vic­tims, the Osnabrück­er Zeitung news­pa­per report­ed.

    It cit­ed the Ger­man Inte­ri­or Min­istry as say­ing police had re-exam­ined a total of 3,300 unsolved killings and attempt­ed mur­ders between 1990 and 2011 and had con­clud­ed that there could be far-right involve­ment in 746 open cas­es with 849 vic­tims. The checks were ordered after the NSU case came to light in 2011. For years, police had ruled out right-wing extrem­ism as the motive behind those killings.

    The case was only solved by chance fol­low­ing the sui­cide of two NSU mem­bers, Uwe Mund­los and Uwe Böhn­hardt, after a bank rob­bery in 2011. DVDs claim­ing respon­si­bil­i­ty for the crimes, and a pis­tol used in the mur­ders, were found in the apart­ment used by the NSU in the east­ern city of Zwick­au.

    Cas­es to Be Re-Opened

    The NSU case exposed defi­cien­cies in Ger­many’s secu­ri­ty ser­vices, such as a lack of coor­di­na­tion between police and the domes­tic intel­li­gence agen­cies.

    A par­lia­men­tary report released in August made dozens of rec­om­men­da­tions for reforms, includ­ing more racial diver­si­ty among police and secu­ri­ty forces. But it stopped short of stat­ing that Ger­many has insti­tu­tion­al racism in its secu­ri­ty ser­vices — a prob­lem anti-racism cam­paign­ers fre­quent­ly refer to.

    The Inte­ri­or Min­istry could not imme­di­ate­ly be reached for com­ment. It was not clear how many of the 746 cas­es and 849 vic­tims referred to killings and how many to attempt­ed killings. The cas­es will now be sent back to region­al police forces for re-inves­ti­ga­tion.

    The min­istry will decide next year whether to re-exam­ine oth­er cat­e­gories of unsolved crimes such as bomb attacks and bank rob­beries to deter­mine whether there might be a far-right link to them.

    Ger­many’s fed­er­al states on Tues­day launched a fresh attempt to out­law the far-right Nation­al Demo­c­ra­t­ic Par­ty of Ger­many (NDP) on the grounds that its ide­ol­o­gy is sim­i­lar to that of Hitler’s Nazi par­ty and that it is seek­ing the mil­i­tant over­throw of Ger­many’s demo­c­ra­t­ic order. One ana­lyst told SPIEGEL ONLINE on Tues­day that the NPD was a “cen­ter of grav­i­ty for vio­lent right-wing extrem­ism.”

    Posted by Vanfield | December 5, 2013, 1:16 pm

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