If you thought Germany didn’t have enough parties on the far right already (NPD, DVU, REP), say hello to Pro Deutschland! Pro Deutschland was founded in 2005 by members of the islamophobic initiative Pro Köln, which was voted back into Cologne’s city council in 2009 with a 5,4 percentage of votes ( http://www.taz.de/1/berlin/artikel/1/wowereit-ruft-zum-protest/ ). Lately, it has received more attention for trying to get into Berlin’s city parliament in 2011.
Even though Pro Deutschland locates itself on the far right, it refuses being connected to the other parties mentioned above, by distancing itself from all extremism and antisemitism. So why should this organization be considered dangerous?
Looking over the party’s program as presented on their homepage (http://www.pro-deutschland.net ), the critical passages are not easy to detect, as Pro Deutschland is eager to present itself as ultra-democratic and constitutional. Against the neoliberal trend, it strives towards a social market economy in favour of the petty bourgeoisie and strong nationalism instead of globalization. In fact, any issues faced by non-Western nations are not to be considered at all; international organizations such as Greenpeace and Amnesty International are discredited.
Since antisemitism is out of the picture, a new enemy has to be found and who would be more convenient at this time than muslim immigrants? Pro Deutschland claims that the multicultural society has failed and Germany has become an immigrant nation. It calls for a stop on ‘loose’ immigration laws, a stop on the building of minarets, and suggests separate classes for migrant school children. Patrik Brinkmann, the main financier of Pro Deutschland, has been cited to view Muslims instead of Jews as today’s central issue. He has also had previous connections to NPD and DVU, but failed to connect with them on fundamental issues, among them his lack of antisemitism and his pro-Christian attitude (http://www.netz-gegen-nazis.de/artikel/brinkmann-patrik-3452).
I have to emphasize here that Pro Deutschland is a Christian party. This may not become apparent at first glance. While I would not criticize moderate Christian organizations that do not try to impose their values on others, this initiative is clearly fundamentalist in some of their views. In interviews Brinkmann talks about welcoming Muslims who want to convert from their ‘barbaric’ belief to Christianity. Naturally, these values are being transported into gender-related issues. It’s easy to read between the lines of the program statement that the family should be privileged over all other living communities. Pro Deutschland is openly homophobic and anti-choice. Other than that, their program features nothing on gender equality or women’s issues.
Pro Deutschland clearly distinguishes between good (Christians, ‘Germans’) and evil (foreigners, leftists). I cannot help worrying that in the future this party will have similar success like the FPÖ in Austria and PVV in the Netherlands…