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The Far Right In Germany

NDP Demonstration
Crossing Continents
Thursday, 22 November 2007
At 1102 GMT on BBC Radio 4

Quietly but effectively, the extreme right movement has been growing in numbers and influence in eastern Germany. With a policy of social outreach these "modern Nazis" are tapping into the general discontent with mainstream politics - particularly amongst disaffected youth.

Today you will find the far right organizing local festivals, family outings and rock concerts. They run citizens' advice bureaus, women's groups and youth clubs.

The National Democratic Party or NDP is their party political arm. It was founded in 1964 and until recently was considered moribund and even sedate, full of old Nazis from the Second World War.

But with energetic and ambitious new leaders proclaiming "revolutionary change" and getting onto local councils and into state parliaments they are winning seats - hearts and minds.

Rosie Goldsmith learns that much of the support for the NPD is coming from a hard core of Nazi brotherhoods and alliances, both young men and increasingly young women. They use music and the internet to spread their propaganda.

She reveals how the modern Nazis may have changed their face but are still clearly linked to militancy and racism. And with a 15 per cent rise in hate crimes in Germany last year there has been a renewed call in mainstream politics for a ban of the NPD party.

Rosie talks to supporters and detractors in villages and towns across Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, one of the poorest, most neglected states of the old East. And in frank interviews young Neo Nazis tell Rosie what attracts them to this ideology and NPD leaders explain what they want for Germany.

Rosie also hears from the activists, academics and politicians trying to resist the rise of the right - and hears how dangerous they think these modern Nazis are for modern Germany.

BBC Radio 4's Crossing Continents will be broadcast on Thursday, 22 November 2007 at 1102 GMT. It will be repeated on Monday, 26 November 2007 at 2030 GMT

Reporter and Producer: Rosie Goldsmith

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SEE ALSO
Far right gains ground in Germany's east
21 Nov 07 |  Crossing Continents
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22 Nov 07 |  Crossing Continents
Country profile: Germany
18 Sep 07 |  Country profiles

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