An Invented Company And Five Million Brochures In The Container: The Action Of a German Collective Against The Extreme Right

An invented company and five million brochures in the container: the action of a German collective against the extreme right

At first glance, the “Flyerservice Hahn” website looks serious. It explains that it is a company specialized in the distribution of brochures for its clients. It advertises an established distribution network and prices unbeatable by the competition. It all sounds pretty convincing and apparently it also convinced the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party during the campaign for the federal elections, as reported the newspaper Der Tagesspiegel.

The company reportedly received orders from various district associations of far-right training to deliver large quantities of brochures. He collected campaign material from the respective district associations, which he had to deliver to mailboxes with the help of Flyerservice Hahn’s publicized distribution structure, created in 2021, the election year.

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But this was never done. AfD fell into the trap of a fictitious company, the responsibility of which has been claimed by the artist collective Zentrum für politische Schönheit [Centro para la Belleza Política], which collected material from the far-right electoral campaign throughout the country and disposed of it. The images show activists tossing piles of brochures into containers.

This Tuesday, the group of artists explained the background of the guerrilla campaign on a web which, among other things, describes Flyerservice Hahn as “the world market leader for the non-distribution of Nazi pamphlets.”

The far-right party had previously said that no more than a million campaign leaflets had been distributed, according to the german media, reporting that district associations and candidates in Lower Saxony, Berlin, Hesse, Baden-Württemberg and Rhineland-Palatinate have been affected.

The activists have said that they collected five million brochures from 85 associations, “72 tons of AfD garbage.”

“Incredible, but true: a public limited company without an address, registration in the commercial register or tax identification number makes all AfD associations in the republic an offer that they cannot refuse, and acquires millionaire orders”, explains the group in the Web. “With such low prices (…), almost all the local associations were convinced.”

According to ARD journalist Daniel Laufer, it is not certain that AfD was naive enough to fall for a fictitious company without a tax identification number or business registration. According to Laufer, the Flyerservice Hahn website was subsequently edited by the collective to eliminate some data.

On their website, the artists deny that they s tole the campaign material. “We simply offered to take the AfD campaign material and distribute it for them. The party gratefully accepted the offer and delivered 72 tons of publicity material to our logistics centers throughout Germany. Unfortunately, we were unable to distribute any material in time.”

“In spring, we went to AfD election campaign events and they handed out brochures. Then we threw them into the nearest garbage container for their content. All citizens are free to do so; we have simply industrialized this process,” says the collective.

Alternative for Germany has announced its intention to file a complaint, according to German media.

“They deliberately try to harm the AfD in the election campaign, and with a high degree of fraudulent energy. This unprecedented action not only affects the AfD. There has already been significant damage to democracy here,” said Tino Chrupalla, the party’s candidate. , last Friday. In the statement, in which he already pointed to the artists’ collective, he acknowledged that the alleged company had offered them its services and that several orders were placed.

The Center for Political Beauty refutes that his behavior is punishable. “There is no order confirmation, no legally valid contracts, just ‘offers’ from a brochure distribution company without any legal form.”

“At the end of the day, it is not our problem that the AfD does not have any members willing to hand out leaflets, but that it is apparently busy all day saluting Hitler in his garden. Furthermore, AfD was free to choose the right one. service provider that he wanted to use. We did not force the party to do anything, “they say.

The collective, which is not the first time it has tried to draw public attention to the AfD with controversial actions, is asking for donations to finance the legal dispute. So far it has raised more than 95,000 euros.

The ultra-rightist formation, subject to a strict sanitary cordon by the rest of the parties, has dropped in these elections compared to those of 2017, when it entered Parliament for the first time as a third force.

AfD has lost its position as the main opposition party, but the fall is not very big, of just 2.3 points, and they re-enter the Bundestag with 10.3% of the votes. It has been the strongest party in Thuringia and Saxony to the east.

Some analysts believe that they have been affected by the internal schism, they have moved badly in the institutions these years and have focused on issues that do not mobilize a vote beyond their electoral base.

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