After a week of Hesitation, has appointed German interior Minister Horst Seehofer on Thursday with Thomas Haldenwang a new chief for the Federal office for the protection of the Constitution (BfV). On Friday of this then had its first major appearance in front of the parliamentary control Committee of the Bundestag. If such a position is newly filled, the personnel is always also a political Signal. Especially if the predecessor was gone due to a scandal.

In this case, two messages are to be sent out. The first is: sleep in, not stand out and especially please and not cause Trouble. Seehofer said at the launch Haldenwangs that it was now time to “return to property-oriented work”. He praised Handelwangs “in a quiet, factual way,” said, President of subnational authorities should take the public Relations of “responsibility”. Which translated means, Haldenwang should please make Quiet his Job and not like his predecessor, Hans-Georg Maaßen constantly by an alarm relativistic Interviews unpleasant.

right-wing scene “will care firmly on the Radar”

The second message, which is associated with Haldenwangs appointment, is: The protection of the Constitution more to right-wing extremism and, possibly, also to the AfD. The Haldenwang made it clear on several occasions. Islamism is the biggest threat to German security. But the right-wing extremist violence is also very high, you have this scene, therefore “on the Radar,” he said at his presentation on Thursday. And on Friday in the Bundestag, he added that more than half of the 24,000, and the authorities well-known right-wing extremists considered ready to use violence.

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He now wants to look “accurate” when it comes to the increasing networking of previously independent scenes such as rockers and neo-Nazis. “We have to be very vigilant,” said Haldenwang. The opportunity to observe in the future, parts of the AfD, is currently being tested in collaboration with the country offices. This year they wanted to make an informed evaluation. Haldenwangs predecessor, Hans-Georg Maaßen, had been criticized for the fact that he had not seen right-wing extremism as the focus of his work and that he refused to check an observation of the AfD. Yes, he had suspected towards the end of the left-wing extremists in the SPD, which even the CDU was ridiculous.

“I’m not vest”

carry a fresh start Begins with Haldenwang?

Superficially it seems so. What vagina him by Maaßen, Haldenwang asked in his presentation. “I have a larger pair of glasses. And I don’t wear a vest,” was his jocular reply. It is then, could the military hair cut complement. Haldenwang has shaved the gray hair to Crew cut like this hairstyle in the military is called.

Also in the Occurrence of the two are different. The members of the secret service’s control panel, at least after the public hearing, full of praise. He had lifted his sound and his style a “beneficial effect” of his predecessor, said André Hahn of the left party, is a recognized critic of the services.

And yet, two things speak against a real fresh start. Firstly, the fact that Haldenwang was the Deputy of Maassen and five years “close and trusting” together with him has worked, he said. It is at the intelligence services unusual that the Deputy takes over, if the boss had to go. The Federal office for the protection of the Constitution, it is even the first Time. Usually, extra looking for somebody that had to do with the out thrown.

Seehofer had no Plan to

May is the due to but only the disorientation of the Minister of the interior. It was some time ago a round with the Minister, when it was a question, what type of authorities the chief should be for the BfV as a successor to Maaßens looking for. A Communicator? A Slouch Hat? An Administrative Professional? Seehofer had no idea as to how the constitutional protection in the future, in which direction it should be developed, stated of people who were there. He only looked helpless in the round. And so it was just the Deputy. Everyone can live with after all, because he acts so calm and factual.

Second, it is not yet possible to predict how far in the protection of the Constitution, in the meantime, those political positions are penetrated, the Maaßen itself is always open. AfD-proximity to and control of everything, what is left of the middle, could have on personnel policy and other developments, long ago, deeper in the authority. On at least observations of people suggest that specialised in the protection of the Constitution. On the working level first employee would already share attitudes of the New Right.

says An old quip about the protection of the Constitution, not the customers of the service were the biggest Problem for democracy. But the own people.

Haldenwang is praised, above all, that he know the own authority as well and understand. Therefore, it must also be part of his Job, to prevent a Drift of the office to the right.

Kevin Chung studied literature in Seoul. He is interested in various areas. He can be reached at or 82-2-6956-6698.