The AfD has discovered the mega-topic climate for itself


AWhen AFD politicians Alice Weidel and Alexander Gauland visited Heinz-Christian Strache more than two years ago, the then chairman of the FPÖ gave them advice. The AfD should not get bogged down on too many topics, but focus on three: migration, Islam and climate. Already then, the AfD had denied its resurgence with the topic of migration, after the euro issue had lost significance. Even as an anti-Islam party, she had flanked, so to speak, presented. But both themes have lost their impact in 2019. The new mega theme is the climate. It is therefore not surprising that Gauland has now discovered the dispute with it as a new opportunity for the AfD. “The criticism of the so-called climate protection policy is after the euro and immigration, the third major topic for the AfD,” Gauland told the “World on Sunday”.

Markus Wehner

It took a while for the AfD leadership to come to this position. The impact of the climate protection movement, the big rallies of the followers of “Fridays for Future” made them initially perplexed, but the demonstrations of groups from the apron of the AfD – from Pegida in Dresden or Zukunft Heimat in Cottbus – in comparison looked pretty cute. Gauland's original reaction had been different: “We have to wait until the climate hype has settled,” he had in June the F.A.Z. said.

But in the meantime, the AfD leadership has realized that sitting out is no solution. The climate theme does not just go away. That's why the AfD goes on the offensive. The timing is favorable. On the one hand, the German government has taken steps with the climate protection package, which are now being denounced by the AFD as “excessive projects” that are “completely ineffective”, according to Gauland. On the other hand, Greta Thunberg's furious speech to the United Nations raised much criticism. The AfD is now trying to guide them to their mills. With their criticism of climate change policy, the AfD has “a unique selling point because all the other parties are involved in the madness that Greta Thunberg once again fueled when she went to the UN in disarmament,” Gauland said. It should become the new theme of mobilization, and it may be appropriate because it violates “political correctness.”

Main thing against it

The climate issue is not new for the AfD. The party even organized congresses with climate change deniers, and many of its politicians expressed their opinion that climate change was unproven. This, of course, threatened to ridicule the party. That's why she now represents a different view. Although there is climate change, it is still completely unclear what proportion of human beings have it. Although this is also not scientifically tenable, but does not sound as cranky as the absolute denial of the obvious. Germany, which in any case generates only two percent of global CO2 emissions, could not change the global climate change anyway, according to Gauland's fatalistic argumentation. He underestimates that the Germans make up only one percent of the world's population. The AFD has not been able to achieve its own climate protection policy of the AfD, which could be a plea for nuclear power, for fear of protests in its own supporters.

(TagToTranslate) Alexander Gauland (t) Greta Thunberg (t) Alice Weidel (t) Heinz-Christian Strache (t) AfD (t) FPÖ (t) UN


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