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Left-wing extremists' fields of activity

"Anti-repression"

The activities of violence-oriented left-wing extremists continue to be mainly determined by the struggle against "state repression", with left-wing extremist violence being directed against "political" decision makers, facilities and vehicles of the police and the agencies for public order, and other "henchmen" and "profiteers" of the "repression apparatus" (e.g. private security companies). For some time, police officers have been targeted as well. Violence-oriented left-wing extremists do not only attack the police in the context of "anti-repression", but in connection with almost all left-wing extremist fields of activity.

Violence-oriented left-wing extremists' "anti-repression work" is defined by openly countering alleged "state repression".

Left-wing extremists think that the allegedly increasing "building-up of the state security apparatus" serves

  • to generally prevent insurgencies,

  • to maintain and secure the "economic power conditions", and

  • to initiate measures to be taken against "left-wing" efforts.

Left-wing extremists argue that "building-up the state security apparatus" is a pillar securing the system to be fought. Therefore, left-wing extremists consider the struggle against "repression" a legitimate and necessary resistance of "emancipatory forces" against the political system.

Another component of the left-wing extremist "anti-repression work" is to fight for the release of prisoners from left-wing extremist groupings. Since there are hardly any central actors of the German left-wing extremist/terrorist scene in prison at present, this (formerly major) aspect of "anti-repression work" has lost importance in recent years.

"Anti-fascism"

The field of action of "anti-fascism" has been a central component of the left-wing extremists' political work for years, especially those from the violence-oriented spectrum. Left-wing extremists consider the appearance of supposed or actual right-wing extremists a provocation.

Left-wing extremists' activities in that context are only superficially directed at fighting right-wing extremist efforts. In fact, the true focus is on fighting the free democratic basic order, which is defamed as a "capitalist system", and whose allegedly innate "fascist" roots are to be eliminated.

Due to the fact that police measures have increasingly been preventing violence-oriented left-wing extremists from directly attacking participants in right-wing extremist marches, they have been seeking confrontations with the police, or they have been trying to prevent the right-wing extremists' arrival at and departure from such marches.

One focal point of left-wing extremists' actions in the field of "anti-fascism" is to collect and publish information on right-wing extremist functionaries, meeting places, "Nazi-shops", and other logistic facilities of the right-wing extremist scene.

By publishing such information, especially right-wing extremist actors' names and addresses, these individuals are to be denounced in public, and to be dragged from anonymity. Moreover, the publishing is meant to scare individuals off, and to show the individuals concerned, that their "political" work is being made impossible.

"Campaign for autonomous spaces" and "Struggle against restructuring" (gentrification)

The issues of fighting for "autonomous spaces" and against "restructuring" (gentrification) are of major importance to German left-wing extremists, especially from the violence-oriented spectrum. "Autonomous spaces" are mostly squats, self-governing youth and cultural centres, and also "art, culture, and waggon collectives". To the left-wing extremist scene, these "autonomous spaces" have a political meaning as "necessary structures of resistance", "free from monitoring, domination, the pressure to conform and the pressure to be part of consumer society". Therefore, left-wing extremists consider "self-governing autonomous spaces" to be imperative to realising their own models of life. If the state interferes with such spaces, this will automatically cause violent resistance by the individuals concerned.

In addition to the major cities Hamburg and Berlin, where the issues of "fighting for autonomous spaces" and "anti-gentrification" – the fight against restoring and restructuring (gentrifying) entire districts with the consequence that the people living there are pushed aside by wealthier classes – have always played a major role, Leipzig has become a new "hot spot" of left-wing extremist violence since 2014. The violence-oriented scene there is trying to acquire spaces in the alternative Connewitz district in order to make "their" policy there and to show that they can act autonomously and without state pressure there. In that context, serious crimes and violent offences have occurred in Leipzig for months.

"Anti-militarism"

The issue of "anti-militarism" is currently not one of the violence-oriented left-wing extremists' top priorities, although they consider the Bundeswehr (German Federal Armed Forces) an organisation for enforcing "capitalist interests" abroad. Time and again, during public appearances of the Bundeswehr, protest actions have occurred that have not always remained peaceful. Crimes and violent offences against Bundeswehr facilities are considered a necessary and legitimate means of "anti-militarist resistance".

In addition to the Bundeswehr, companies that produce armaments or co-operate with the Bundeswehr are targets of violent actions, too. The "anti-militarist camp", which has been organised in the Altmark near Magdeburg (Saxony-Anhalt) in late summer for several years, and which is in protest against the Bundeswehr combat training centre there, is of major importance. Several hundred anti-militarists participate in the camp. During the camp, crimes and violent offences have been committed time and again.

Since mid 2011, left-wing extremists have mobilised to participate in the campaign "War starts here. Campaign against the normality of war". The campaign is seen as a part of Europe-wide "anti-militarist" activities. The focus of the campaign is on the "extended infrastructure and the ideological legitimisation of military violence". Thus, civil places and institutions – schools, job centres, companies, universities, and job fairs – are to be "marked" as places where the Bundeswehr is advertised and soldiers recruited.

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Anti-terrorist Hotline: +49(0)221/ 792-3366

Anti-terrorist Hotline: +49(0)221/ 792-3366

Publications

Cyber attacks controlled by intelligence services

Cyber attacks controlled by intelligence services

DOI: May 2018
Further information Download
2017 Annual Report on the Protection of the Constitution (Facts and Trends)

2017 Annual Report on the Protection of the Constitution (Facts and Trends)

DOI: July 2018
Further information Download
How can I identify extremists and members of foreign secret services within my environment? - Important information for refugees in Germany

How can I identify extremists and members of foreign secret services within my environment? - Important information for refugees in Germany

DOI: March 2018
Further information Download
2016 Annual Report on the Protection of the Constitution (Facts and Trends)

2016 Annual Report on the Protection of the Constitution (Facts and Trends)

DOI: July 2017
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Our topics – Facts to know

Our topics – Facts to know

DOI: January 2017
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Industry 4.0 – Challenges of a new technology

Industry 4.0 – Challenges of a new technology

DOI: January 2017
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