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Racist Attacks against the Naturalization of Foreigners (September 14, 1979)

During the recession that followed the second oil shock, neo-Nazis started using xenophobic slogans in their publications. It was an effort to exploit widespread fears of unemployment and to tap into the social envy of less affluent Germans. Neo-Nazis also tried to gain an electoral advantage by launching a campaign against the naturalization of Communists and criminals.

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Helmut Schmidt Turns Turks into Germans!
An Outrageous Attack on our National Character

The SPD is planning an outrageous attack on our German national character: Hundreds of thousands of young Turks, Greeks, Sicilians, and other southern Europeans are supposed to automatically become Germans. Apparently, the only prerequisite is that they were born in the Federal Republic of Germany or – even flimsier – attended school here.

That would mean that foreign youths would receive all the rights of German citizens, would have the right to vote and serve in the Federal Armed Forces!

The draft of this plan was put forward by the Federal Government Commissioner for Guest Workers, the former SPD Minister President of North Rhine-Westphalia, Heinz Kühn. The Federal Chancellor is said to have already approved his proposals.

A corresponding bill was presented to the federal and state governments for comment. According to the bill, foreigners would be granted a legal claim to naturalization. This means nothing less than this: that the authorities will have to hand out a German passport to every Communist and every criminal!

The proposal shows the value that the coalition government in Bonn assigns to its own national character. People, then, would no longer be German on the basis of ancestry and birth, but because they want to secure a good “job” in the Federal Republic. What relationship do these young Turks have to their future “fatherland” other than their ability to communicate in sub-standard German? They can’t read or write in either German or Turkish: illiterates in no-man’s-land!

People from totally different cultural backgrounds are being artificially made into something that they’re not. To be sure, this will create a new proletariat whose political significance is obvious. SPD functionaries can rightly assume that this will open up a [whole new] voter pool for the exclusive benefit of the Left in the Federal Republic. Up to now, Germany’s largely homogenous population structure has been its great advantage; all this, however, will encourage the emergence of a mixed race that will become political dynamite.

It is grotesque: the same Germany that is relocating hundreds of thousands from the East for the sake of their German national character is now prepared to turn just as many foreigners into Germans!

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