• Israfan
  • Posts
  • German Far-Right Politician Fined for Repeated Use of Banned Nazi Phrase

German Far-Right Politician Fined for Repeated Use of Banned Nazi Phrase

Björn Höcke's Repeated Offenses Highlight Alarming Trends in German Politics.

A German court has fined a prominent far-right leader for once again using a phrase associated with the Nazis, as Germany’s growing far-right flank shows an increasing comfort with invoking Nazi-aligned phrases and ideas. Björn Höcke, a leader of the Alternative for Germany party (AfD), was ordered to pay €16,900 (roughly $18,000) for chanting the first two words of the slogan “Everything For Germany,” or “Alles für Deutschland,” in front of a pub crowd in December, goading the crowd to finish it.

This is the second time in a few months that Höcke, the party leader of the state of Thuringia in what was once East Germany, has been fined for using the phrase. In May, judges fined him around $13,000 for an earlier use of the phrase in 2021. Nazi stormtroopers had engraved the phrase “Everything for Germany” on their daggers.

The recent electoral success of AfD in the European Parliament elections has alarmed local Jewish leaders. During his first trial, Höcke, a former history teacher known for promoting historical revisionism around the Nazi regime, claimed ignorance of the phrase’s origins, a claim the court found dubious. During his second trial, the judge noted Höcke's lack of remorse and apparent glee in prompting the crowd to complete the Nazi slogan.

Höcke has publicly questioned the anti-Nazi laws established in Germany to prevent a resurgence of the ideology after the Holocaust. In court, he provocatively asked, “Do we want to ban the German language because the Nazis spoke German?”

First elected in 2013, Höcke has become a polarizing figure in Germany as his ideas and his party have gained traction. His 2017 description of the Berlin Holocaust memorial as a “monument of shame” led to calls for his expulsion from AfD and an artist erecting a replica of the memorial outside his home. Höcke has also faced accusations of contributing to a neo-Nazi website under a pseudonym, which he refused to disavow.

Despite these controversies, Höcke's influence within AfD has grown as loyalists have secured key leadership roles. This support has solidified his position within the populist party, which continues to make electoral gains across Germany. A German court has even ruled that calling Höcke a fascist is not defamatory but a “value judgment based on facts.”

Germany is not alone in grappling with Nazi links in contemporary politics. In France, a far-right coalition party member recently withdrew from a National Assembly race after her opponent circulated a photo of her wearing a Nazi hat. The anti-immigration right is gaining ground across Europe, as evidenced by recent successes in the European Parliament elections and in the Netherlands.

Stay informed about the implications of these developments and share this article to raise awareness. Subscribe to our newsletter for more insights and updates on issues impacting the Jewish community and the rise of far-right politics in Europe.