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Totalitarismus und Demokratie - aktuelles Heft: Jahrgang 20, 2023, Heft 2

Ziviler Demokratieschutz / Civil Democracy Protection

Einführung | Editorial

Aufsätze / Articles

Rigoll, Dominik:
Demokratischer Protektionismus. Eine kleine Geschichte französischer und deutscher Menschenrechtsligen (S. 149–170)

This contribution analyzes the “Ligue française des droits de l’homme et du citoyen” (LDH), founded in 1898, and the “Deutsche Liga für Menschenrechte” (DLM), established in 1922, as early forms of a civic democracy protection. The essay situates both organisations in the political and social history of their countries by attempting to answer these questions, mainly on the basis of the research literature: What were the historical traditions of the leagues? What understanding of democracy did the league activists have? Who did they consider to be guarantors or threats to democracy? What political and social functions did both organisations fulfil? What was their relationship to political parties and the state? What political impact did the leagues have in the French Third and the Weimar Republic? And to what extent was the protection of democracy they practised a model for militant democracy after 1945?

Sebastian Elsbach:
Das Reichsbanner Schwarz-Rot-Gold: Wehrhafte Demokraten in der Weimarer Republik (S. 171–192)

The Reichsbanner Black-Red-Gold was a private organisation for the protection of the Weimar Republic. It was founded in 1924. The Reichsbanner set itself the goal to encounter right-wing violence as well as left wing violence and sought the cooperation with the understaffed authorities. The activists of the Reichsbanner sought to protect political meeting of democratic parties, the pacifist movement and the Jewish community. Additionally, the goal was to strengthen the legitimacy of the republic through festivities, publications and day-to-day items. However, the internal division of the Reichsbanner with its 1,5 million members lead to a purely defensive course, which was not able to take away the political initiative especially from the emerging NSDAP.

Tom Mannewitz:
Zivilgesellschaftlicher Demokratieschutz durch politische Stiftungen (S. 193–222)

Political foundations are relevant actors in the civil protection of democracy in Germany. In order to analyse their contribution to this task, this article considers the self-image, the definitions of “hostility to democracy”, the concepts used, the practical work, the influence on the public and the relationship of ten political foundations to the Verfassungsschutz. In addition to the major party foundations, the Otto Brenner, Hans Böckler and Amadeu Antonio Foundations are included in the study due to their visibility. As a result, three types of foundation emerge: the “government agency twin”, the “occasional democracy protector” and the “anti-fascist activist”.

Miroslav Mareš:
Transnationale Zusammenarbeit zwischen zivilgesellschaftlichen Organisationen zur Bekämpfung des Extremismus in Europa (S. 223–240)

The paper deals with a challenging issue of cooperation between civic organizations in Europe that are engaged in anti-extremist activities. The author defines and conceptualizes transnational cooperation of civic society against extremism, briefly outlines the historical development of transnational non-governmental anti-extremist cooperation in Europe, analyses contemporary pan-European anti-extremist networks in Europe, and selects other forms of anti-extremist cooperation in Europe. The case study is dedicated to the Platform of European Memory and Conscience.

Uwe Backes:
Erfolgsbedingungen zivilgesellschaftlicher Demokratieschutz-Organisationen (S. 241–254)

This article attempts to answer the following questions: Is it primarily the qualities of the actors that explain the establishment and longevity of a civil society organization protecting democracy? Or do such actors owe their success primarily to party-political patronage or state support? What role do socio-cultural conditions play, especially the perception of threats and the way of dealing with them? Since the conditions for success at the micro (actors), meso (competitiveness of actors and opportunity structures) and macro levels (social, political, economic and cultural framework conditions) are manifold and interwoven, no simple, generalisable answer to these questions can be given.

Buchbesprechungen / Book Reviews

Des Lebens Überfluß. Erinnerungen eines ausgewanderten Juristen
Tübingen (Mohr Siebeck) 2023 / Autor: Karl Loewenstein
Rezension: Uwe Backes (S. 257–259)

Im Zwielicht. Zerbrechlichkeit und Resilienz der Demokratie im 21. Jahrhundert
Frankfurt a. M. (Campus) 2023 / Autor: Wolfgang Merkel
Rezension: Eckhard Jesse (S. 260–263)

Der Stasi-Mythos. DDR-Auslandsspionage und der Verfassungsschutz
Berlin (Ch. Links Verlag) 2023 / Autor: Michael Wala
Rezension: Helmut Müller-Enbergs (S. 263–267)

Die UdSSR und die beiden deutschen Staaten 1949–1953. Dokumente aus deutschen und russischen Archiven
Berlin (Duncker & Humblot) 2023 / Autor: Jochen P. Laufer / Martin Sabrow
Rezension: Dierk Hoffmann (S. 267–269)


Mike Schmeitzner:
Johannes Frackowiak (1968–2023) (S. 273-276)