crowd at Germany political gathering

A Far-Right Party Surges in Germany

Helmut K. Anheier, adjunct professor of public policy and social welfare at UCLA Luskin, wrote a Project Syndicate commentary on the rising popularity of Germany’s largest far-right party. Once dismissed as a fringe group of radical nationalists, the Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) has surged in the polls thanks to infighting and missteps by Germany’s political mainstream, as well as to the Ukraine war, which disrupted Germans’ sense of security as well as their energy supply. If the party’s popularity holds — it’s now polling at 21% support, up from 11% last year — it could position itself to becoming a coalition partner or leader in future elections, taking up the mantle of legitimacy that far-right parties in France, Italy and Sweden have adopted. The party has offered new clues about its agenda. Björn Höcke, a state party leader who has become a standard-bearer for the AfP, declared that “this EU must die, so that the real Europe can live.”


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