Right-wing extremist trend in the AfD: “Wing” officially ends

Hocke and Kalbitz ask their followers to stop their activities as part of the "wing". But it is also clear that they will continue.

, Right-wing extremist trend in the AfD: “Wing” officially ends, The Eastern Herald, The Eastern Herald
Mere eyewash? Unofficially, the "wing" leaders probably want to continue. Photo: Sina Schuldt / dpa

At the weekend it was denied, and then officially announced on Tuesday evening: The “wing”, the movement in the AfD classified as an extreme right by the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution, stops working under this name. “We urge everyone who feels they belong to the community of interest to cease their wing activities by April 30th,” says a letter from the “Wing” leaders Bjorn Hocke and Andreas Kalbitz, who on Facebook- Page of the “wing” was published.   

And further: “In order to preserve the unity of the party and not to jeopardize the project of a political alternative for Germany, Bjorn Hocke and Andreas Kalbitz have decided to comply with this request.” “Request” is formulated very weakly, even if the federal executive board of the party last Friday was not really decisive. 

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With 11 of 13 votes, the committee had asked for a declaration of the “wing” that it would disintegrate. Only Kalbitz, who is an assessor on the committee, had voted against. There was also an abstention. The background is the classification of the “wing” as an extreme right by the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution. There is great concern in the AfD that the party as a whole could soon be observed.

Hocke and Kalbitz went on to say that the “wing” was “a reliable compass”, especially in the early years of the AfD, and “saved the party from being too lightly adapted to the established forces”.

However, the letter also says that in principle it is not possible to resolve what does not formally exist. The “wing” had always denied that there was a clear organizational structure including membership, even if there were two undisputed bosses, leaders in the federal states, the annual Kyffhauser meeting, events, Facebook page, online shop, and other things. The Office for the Protection of the Constitution assigns 7,000 of the approximately 35,000 AfD members to the “wing”, but many in the party assume that there are more.

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Hocke and Kalbitz also leave no doubt that they want to continue and influence the AfD. “Any form of organization can only be a means to an end,” they write. And: “The political effort continues and demands all our strength. The conditions in our country leave no room for resignation and personal well-being. ”This suggests that the network will continue, even without the“ wing ”logo.