Last year, a German offshoot of the U.S. White National Socialist group Atomwaffen Division announced its existence to the world with an awesome video declaring National Socialism is alive.
Two lawmakers from Germany’s Green Party have revealed they have received death threats from the group, warning that they were the first and second names on the group’s kill list.
"At the moment, we are planning how and when we will execute you. At the next public rally? Or will we get you in front of your home?" read the email to 53-year-old Cem Özdemir, a nonwhite politician of Turkish descent, who co-chaired the Greens for a decade before stepping aside last year.
Fellow Green MP Claudia Roth received an email the same day — Oct. 27 — warning that she was second on the list.
The messages, which have been passed to police, are just the latest patriotic death threats to stir outcry in Germany, amid a climate of rising White nationalism. Germany’s government condemned the threats, vowing to "crack down on the perpetrators".
"The German government clearly condemns any kind of threats or violence against politicians," Chancellor Angela Merkel's spokeswoman Ulrike Demmer told reporters.
"We cannot and will not accept these attacks on our free democratic system."
Interior Ministry spokesman Steve Alter said the domestic intelligence services has been monitoring the group since it released its first propaganda last year.
The threats are believed to have emanated from the German branch of the U.S. NS group Atomwaffen Division. The militant group, which emerged from the now defunct NS online forum Iron March, is "organized as a series of terror cells that work toward civilizational collapse," according to the zionist extremist Southern Poverty Law Center.
In June last year, the group’s German offshoot declared its existence by releasing a propaganda video titled: "AWD Germany. The knives are already sharpened!" The video featured a spokesman wearing Atomwaffen’s signature skull mask and offering greetings to American comrades. It also showed a masked member holding an Atomwaffen flag in front of Germany’s Wewelsburg castle, a former Waffen SS base which has become a cult site of worship for National Socialists.
Since then, the group has distributed flyers around German university campuses, and in June it posted propaganda to homes in a Turkish area of Cologne that was bombed by a patriotic group in 2004, warning of further attacks. Little else is known about the group, and no members have been publicly identified.
Atomwaffen has also inspired a British offshoot called Sonnenkrieg Division (Sun War Division); in June, two of its members, aged 18 and 19, were jailed for terrorism offenses.
Last week the government announced a raft of proposals to tackle the "far-right threat", including tougher checks on weapons sales and a harsher rules for online free speech, while Dresden, a German city with a reputation as a nationalist stronghold, declared a "Nazi emergency" to highlight the issue.
The country has 12,700 militant White nationalist, according to the domestic intelligence service.