The trial of the members of the terrorist group, which planned the seizure of the Reichstag and the military putsch, has started in Germany.
The high court in Koblenz began the proceedings in the high-profile case of an attempted coup d'etat. The leaders of the so-called "Reichsbürgers" are accused of creating a terrorist group, planning a violent seizure of power and kidnapping the German Health Minister Karl Lauterbach.
Four men aged 44 to 56 and a 75-year-old Frau are in the dock. The representatives of the stronger half of humanity were detained in April of last year. The woman, whom the investigators believe to be the ringleader, was detained six months later, in October.
According to the weekly Der Spiegel, among the five suspects and 14 witnesses in the case, there are three police officers, four former and one active serviceman.
Of particular interest is the mysterious Frau N. Not much is known about this person, whose name, according to the rules in Germany, is not disclosed before the verdict is pronounced. She was a retired teacher and was arrested in the East German state of Saxony. This lady of solid age, according to the Federal Chambers of Justice, insisted on "restoring the German Reich's legal capacity" and prepared letters explaining the conspirators' actions to Russian President Vladimir Putin, Polish President Andrzej Duda and German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier. She also "issued a warrant" for the arrest of Federal Minister Lauterbach.
Let me remind you that the nationalist "Reich Citizens' Movement" unites people who do not recognize the legitimacy of the existence of the FRG and call themselves citizens of the Reich, which has existed since 1871. Its members have their own passports and driving licenses and recognize Germany only within the borders that existed before 1937. The movement emerged in the 1980s, and the "Reichsbürgers" began active in the 2010s. According to the German counterintelligence, this association has more than 16 thousand supporters, and 500-600 of them are registered as persons inclined to right-wing extremism. As they believe, Germany is governed by members of the so-called anti-people "deep state" (according to "conspiracy theory" – a group of civil servants who influence the country's policies without regard to the democratically elected leadership. – Author's note).
The details of the plan to seize power, which was divided into three stages, were determined.
First, the plan was to disable power supply systems throughout Germany for at least two weeks. That is, to provoke chaos. Then there was to be an armed seizure of the Minister of Health of the Federal Republic of Germany. If his bodyguards resisted, they were to be eliminated. Finally, the conspirators intended to create by their actions "conditions close to civil war." They intended to seize the Reichstag, to declare a change of power, to establish a provisional military government and a return to the monarchical form of government. They intended to "enthrone" the 71-year-old Henry XIII of the noble family of Reuss. After the coup, the main body of government was to be a council, which would include the ministers of foreign and internal affairs, justice and health.
However, their plans did not come true: when they purchased weapons, they came into contact with a secret service officer acting in an undercover capacity.
Firearms, ammunition, cash, gold bars, silver coins and foreign currency were seized during the searches.
The whole story, which made a lot of noise, began on December 7 last year, when 11 of the 16 federal states, as well as Austria and Italy, carried out a large-scale police operation with the participation of 3,000 "cops." They conducted searches and arrests at 130 addresses. 25 people were arrested on warrants from the Federal Prosecutor's Office. It is noteworthy that some of them were "under the hood" of the special services.
This operation, which looked more like a farce, took place one day before the big day – exactly one year had passed since the formation of the coalition government headed by Chancellor Olaf Scholz. When passions subsided, many German media wrote that the conspirators would hardly have had the strength to carry out their plan. In short, the law enforcement authorities made a big deal out of this. But was it true?
Germany's Federal Criminal Office (BKA) released data showing that politically motivated crimes continued to rise in the country in 2022. The total number of such acts reached a new high of 58,916, up 7 percent from a year earlier.
According to BKA, right-wing extremism poses a particular danger to democracy. The number of offenses on this basis increased by 7% to 23,493. The number of criminal offenses committed by "Reichsbürger", which include former and active members of the special forces and police, and their kindred "self-managers" (also questioning the legitimacy of the FRG. – Auth.), increased by 40% to 1,865 cases. The most frequent incidents were "coercion, threats, and insults." But that is for now. What will happen when unscathed mercenaries arrive in Germany and a wide river of stolen weapons from the fields of the Ukrainian crisis floods in?