Column right trash: an elitist clan

Internal materials confirm mentality, financial channels and structural makeup: The Identitarians are an authoritarian hierarchical group.

Here, once again, an Identitarian makes himself a "victim" Photo: dpa

"Where do you see your personal strengths?" – "Rhetoric or self-defense? – "What do your friends and family think about your attitude?" – "What is your position on other organizations such as: III. Weg, NPD, Die Rechte, AfD" – "Where do you see yourself in 2 years within the movement?". The questions from the Identitarian Movement (IB) activist questionnaire suggest that not all interested people can become activists right away. "Political mass movements" tend toward "opportunism" is also stated in the internal materials available to the taz.

The strategy and training documents of the IB around leading cadre Martin Sellner reveal the tight organization, its financial supporters and calculated reactions of the state from house searches to arrest. Since 2012, the IB has been active in Germany, especially in online networks, to save the "ethnocultural identity of European peoples" from "demographic collapse" and the "wave of mass immigration."

"Requiem or Reconquista" is their recurring slogan, oscillating between fatalism and heroism. As a "radical avant-garde," true to the French model of the Generation Identitaire, they want to use actions to "continually widen the political window and defy ‘metapolitical hegemony,’" they write.

The New Right, from Junge Freiheit (JF) to the "Institute for State Policy" (IfS), welcomed the self-proclaimed "metapolitical movement from ‘the right. After all, they are united by the intention to determine discourses and positions in the middle of society through an "information war" and to reach the "mainstream" in order to attack the "legitimation of the ruling power.

Euphoria soon gave way to disappointment. In February 2013, IfS co-founder Gotz Kubitschek accused the IB on the web portal of failing to establish itself as a "virulent protest movement" because it was not developing "leaders," but that it needed "men," "desparados," who were willing to show their faces more strongly, "not because they have nothing to offer except their loyalty to their convictions, but WHILE (emphasis in original) they could also have a perfectly normal career."

Strict rules for activists

Three years later, the movement, whose association "Identitare Bewegung Deutschland e.V." Nils Altmieks represents, is present in the media through provocative actions. It achieved this also thanks to the support of Kubitschek’s networks. According to the internal material, the movement receives funds and material for actions in addition to the association’s supporting memberships and through donations via the initiative "One Percent for Our Country." "One percent" sees itself – as Kubitschek says – as "Greenpeace for Germans." The portal wants to network and professionalize the protest against immigration and "uberfremdung".

How does it feel to live in a right-wing filter bubble, when the media are defamed as "lying press" and only the facts that fit into one’s own world view count? A team of taz writers is asking themselves this question. We read along, write back or simply observe. Right Trash – since February regularly on

Self-initiative seems to be desired only to a limited extent at the IB. If an activist wants to make a banner, the "leader of the group" should be asked – according to the documents – so as not to undermine the "corporate identity of the movement". Style and habitus must also be correct in the actions and leaflets, it is warned.

The material also contains rules of argumentation and appearance: Activists should design affirmative chains to refute political opponents. It is also important to pay close attention to body language, appear relaxed and smile, it says. Individuals should explore their own strengths and weaknesses in speeches, and groups should precisely coordinate and critically evaluate the roles they play in their actions.

The materials also prescribe strict rules for event organization: When renting rooms, one should remain "vague" about intentions. For regulars’ tables, a current topic should be prepared and flanked by a secondary topic. It is stated that the "legislative power" is infiltrated by a "small group of Stalinists".

With the police, no statements were to be made, role assignments of officers during interrogations were to be observed, and after searches, it was to be taken into account that wiretaps might be installed. "Never forget: when you are in custody (…) you are not a criminal, you are an activist and you keep fighting". And, "The first rule for all Identitarians is loyalty. No one will be forgiven if they betray one of our ranks. We are a clan and we stick together".

In its materials, the IB attributes a special role to the movement’s women. To achieve "affection," pictures of actions "with young people (women) who have a positive aura" should be used. At meetings, each activist would have to have a "clear role", as a hint for receptions it is stated: "Girls are better". The IB also names its target group: "young European men. For "newcomers" it should be emphasized during a first meeting that the group also cares for sports and culture and that "we are also friends and not only political partners".