The threat of right-wing extremists has grown significantly in Germany. The Presidents of the three German intelligence services concurred with this impression at a public hearing in the Bundestag. But this assessment is probably mainly due to the fact that the Federal Intelligence Service, the protection of the Constitution and the Military Shielding Service are now taking a closer look when it comes to right-wing extremists. This was also evident in the annual survey before the Parliamentary Control Panel of the Bundestag.

According to BfV President Thomas Haldenwang, the BfV counts 12,700 people as a violent right-wing extremist scene in Germany. The police currently categorize 43 right-wing extremists as perils to whom an attack is to be trusted. The latter number will increase, said Haldenwang with reference to talks with the responsible Federal Criminal Police Office.

20 suspected cases in the KSK

Even if the number of recognized extremists remains approximately the same, "the number of right-wing suspected cases in the Bundeswehr is increasing," said the President of the Abschirmdienstes (BAMAD), Christof Gramm. Currently there are 500. Alone about 20 of them have been identified in the command Special Forces (KSK), the special unit of the Bundeswehr. The KSK had become "the focus of work" of the BAMAD, so gram.

In his authority, the topic of right-wing extremism generally receives more attention. On the question of the Green MEP Konstantin von Notz, if there is a network of right-wing extremists in the Bundeswehr, said Gramm: "Yes." The term network is not tangible. But you can see "Personenzusammschlüsse".

Conservation chief Haldenwang described the observation that the right-wing extremist scene managed to network with sections of the bourgeoisie. "The proverbial 'right-hand corner', with which it is possible to distinguish extremists from the bourgeois camp, is no longer there," said Haldenwang. The protection of the Constitution is more and more often related to "open-ended mixed scenes". In addition, the so-called New Right "in the political process is active in order to put right ideas on many feet." Several times Haldenwang mentioned the Identitarian Movement, the wing of the AfD and the Junge Alternative. All three groups are now observation cases of the BfV.

Breeding ground for racism and extremism

The BND as a foreign intelligence service has less to do with right-wing extremists, but also BND boss Bruno Kahl has strengthened the observation of this issue. He has appointed a representative for extremist threats. This should collect findings and make other authorities available.

Until recently, all three intelligence agencies were considered short-sighted when it came to right-wing extremism. Above all, the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution under its then President Hans-Georg Maaßen resisted, for example, parts of the AfD or Reich citizens considered to be right-wing extremists and to observe. That has changed in the meantime - above all, this impression was apparently conveyed by the three intelligence officers at the annual hearing. So Haldenwang distanced himself from statements that Maaßen had recently made: "I am not the nanny of Dr. Maassen, I have no influence on how he expresses himself.

At least since the murder of the President of the Government, Walter Lübcke, it had become clear "that we are dealing with a turning point," said BAMAD President Gramm. "There is again a breeding ground in Germany where extremism and racism can grow." In his authority, a change of mentality has taken place, one will consider in the future not only the Bundeswehr alone, but also connections of Bundeswehr members in other areas. The BAMAD had refined the "sensorics for networks of relationships" and strengthened the corresponding area personnel. Even topics such as those lost in the Bundeswehr weapons would now be more in focus.

"Virtual Right-Wing Extremism"

The fact now seems to have arrived at the services that there are also public servants with right-wing extremist attitudes. Haldenwang said that the Office of the Constitution would, together with its state offices, prepare a situation report on right-wing extremism in the public service. There are now "too many individual cases, as that one should pay no more attention".

In the Bundeswehr, for example, those who are not over the threshold to right-wing extremism should also be closely monitored, according to BAMAD CEO Gram. Soldiers with "insights on lack of constitutional loyalty" would have lost nothing in the Bundeswehr. A civil servant is obliged to protect his state even in a crisis and should support any efforts to abolish it.

According to Haldenwang, the protection of the constitution now also focuses on the Internet as a meeting place for extremists. You do a lot more to enlighten there. Because this virtual right-wing extremism, as Haldenwang called him, was a great danger. In open and covert forums, like-minded people would meet and eventually decide, "now we've talked enough, now we'll do something".

Haldenwang also mentioned the culprit of Halle. He was an example of a "missionary offender" with a "self-made ideology" who wanted to set a shout out. He had shared his plans before the act with no one, but he was not alone, but has radicalized itself in a particular environment. One must recognize these nets. For this one has increased personnel and technical.