Sahra Wagenknecht is boiling with outrage and is in a rage on Anne Will’s talk show. Next to her: Tino Chrupalla, top candidate and federal spokesman for the AfD. The Bundestag member of the Left raises serious allegations against the AfD. Chrupalla, smiling slightly and staring, without changing an expression.
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“I find that so disgusting. I think that’s so disgusting, “said Wagenknecht in the direction of the AfD man. What she means, she explained in detail beforehand. “I think that Saxony-Anhalt has to be said clearly, it really is a state association where the neo-Nazi scene is extremely present,” the left-wing politician began.
“Your top candidate felt comfortable in a Facebook group that thought it was funny to mount the picture of the girl Anne Frank, who was murdered by the Nazis, on a pizza box and write under it: fresh from the oven,” said Wagenknecht.
The Facebook group she refers to was called “The Patriots”. In November 2017, a member of the closed group posted the montage described by Wagenknecht: The picture of Anne Frank on a pizza box, labeled: “Fresh from the oven, light and crispy at the same time” and “New, fiery hot”.
The Dutch-German Jewish girl, whose diary became world-famous, did not survive the Holocaust and died at the age of 15 in 1945 in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.
Also AfD MPs in the Facebook group
There were also some AfD MPs in the group. In addition to NPD people, other neo-Nazis, racists and xenophobes, almost 50 members of the AfD networked there, 15 of them from the Bundestag, 33 from the state parliaments. The blogger Frank Stollberg published an initial overview on Facebook in 2017.
The Tagesspiegel reported in the same year that at least 14 of these members of the Bundestag and Landtag had posted their own contributions in the group or commented on other users’s contributions. This affected, for example, the members of the Bundestag Jens Maier from Saxony, Enrico Komning from Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and Volker Münz from Baden-Württemberg.
Seven days after the Anne Frank Montage became known, there were still ten user accounts in the group that belonged to AfD members of the Bundestag and 16 others that could be assigned to members of the state parliaments.
AfD spokesman Christian Lüth assured at the time that the group “The Patriots” played “no role in forming opinions within the party”. Many of the elected officials did not even know that they belonged to it or that they were unconscious and therefore inactive members there, and some had already left, according to Lüth in 2017.
AfD politicians say they are unknowingly members of the group
The former Saxony-Anhalt AfD country chief André Poggenburg, himself a member of the group in 2017, said at the time that the group played no role in parliamentary work or the formation of opinions within the factions. “It is a fundamental problem with Facebook that anyone can simply be added to such groups without having to confirm this.” It was the same with him.
[Mehr zum Thema: Die Radikalen von nebenan – warum so viele in Sachsen-Anhalt die AfD wählen (T+)].
He called the Anne Frank posting in 2017 “unacceptable” and “unacceptable”. To the Tagesspiegel, Poggenburg said: “If such postings, even if only sporadically, appear in a Facebook group, they will of course not be approved by the AfD. That is why I will urge the MEPs in my group to leave this group too, provided they have been added to it.
The Berlin regional chief of the AfD, Georg Pazderski, told the “Berliner Morgenpost” that he too had been added without his knowledge. That does not correspond to his political direction. “I think such groups are superfluous.”
AfD top candidate Oliver Kirchner was also a member of “The Patriots”
The top candidate that Wagenknecht refers to in “Anne Will” when she denounces the party’s right-wing extremist activities is Oliver Kirchner, who is also a group member of “Die Patrioten”. “If you compete with people like that, you can’t sit down here and pretend you’re the big bourgeois conservative opposition here. You are not, ”she said.
Kirchner himself said he knew nothing about the inhuman posts. He told the “Mitteldeutsche Zeitung” that he was only a member of the groups to share his speeches and thus to achieve a “certain public”.
“You are very conscious of the fact that you do not distance yourself from it because you want to have and address this milieu,” Wagenknecht accused Chrupalla. He didn’t reply.