The phenomenon irritates and damages trust in the state. Officials from the police and other security agencies participate in right-wing extremist chat groups or even divert ammunition for enemies of the constitution. Such scandals have shaken the Federal Republic several times, and now the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV) has written a comprehensive analysis.
Many individual cases paint a worrying picture, even if the vast majority of the many thousands of officers in the security agencies are evidently not prone to extremism. This is the result of a comprehensive analysis for three years, which the BfV has summarized in the new “Status report on right-wing extremists, Reich citizens and self-governors in security authorities”. “Self-governors” are extremists who declare their property their own state and often refuse to pay taxes and fines.
Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD) and BfV President Thomas Haldenwang presented the more than 150-page paper on Friday in Berlin.
According to this, the police, intelligence services and other authorities at federal and state level have a dregs of several hundred employees with a disturbed relationship to democracy. For the period from July 2018 to June 2021, the association for the protection of the constitution evaluated a total of 860 cases in which there were connections to right-wing extremism and Reich citizens – or at least the suspicion.
For 327 employees of security authorities, the information was so serious that it was “further processed by the intelligence service”. Anti-constitutional activities were identified in 138 cases at federal level and 189 at state level.
As a consequence of the cases (meaning the 327 employees), 500 labor and disciplinary measures were initiated. “We will not allow our democratic constitutional state to be sabotaged from within by right-wing extremists,” said Federal Interior Minister Faeser. She announced that she would introduce a bill to amend the federal disciplinary law later this year. Enemies of the constitution are to be removed from public service more quickly than before.
The investigation is a wide-ranging look at the spectrum of security agencies. The federal police, the Federal Criminal Police Office, the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution, the Bundestag police, the Federal Intelligence Service, the Federal Office for the Military Counterintelligence Service of the Bundeswehr (BAMAD), the customs administration and the authorities for the protection of the constitution and police forces of the federal states were scrutinized.
The paper is the continuation of a first situation report from 2020, which named a few highly problematic cases in the police and intelligence services, a total of 34. However, there were no Reichsbürger and self-governors. The conference of interior ministers then commissioned the new situation report, which was methodically further developed.
One reason for the investigation of right-wing activities in the security authorities was the nationwide outrage over the suspected complicity of officers from the Frankfurt (Main) police headquarters in the anonymous threats from “NSU 2.0” against the Frankfurt lawyer Seda Basay-Yildiz as well as politicians and other celebrities . The investigation revealed that Hessian police officers belonged to a racist chat group. Further cases followed in Berlin and other federal states.
In the current report, in most cases, a total of 152, right-wing extremists or Reich citizens in security agencies are certified as members of anti-constitutional chat groups. Contacts with right-wing extremist organizations such as the NPD were found among 143 employees of security authorities.
In addition, politically motivated insults were found in 141 cases, according to the report. Mentioned are “human dignity-violating, excluding, contemptuous, mocking or otherwise degrading statements towards people with a migration background or people of Islamic and Jewish faith as well as the sending of messages with insulting and threatening content to politically dissidents”. Participation in right-wing extremist events was reported for 74 people from the security authorities.