Newsletter IV 2024

January 21th to 27th

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  2024 2023 2022 2021
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Current news+ Background knowledge

The PDF file "Nuclear Power Accidents" contains a number of other incidents from various areas of the nuclear industry. Some of the incidents were never published through official channels, so this information could only be made available to the public in a roundabout way. The list of incidents in the PDF file is therefore not 100 % identical with "INES and the disturbances in nuclear facilities", but represents an addition.

1 January 1977 (INES 5) NPP Beloyarsk, USSR

2 January 1958 (INES 4) Nuclear factory Mayak, USSR

3 January 1961 (INES 4 | NAMS 2,9) SL-1, NRTS Idaho Falls, USA

4 January 1986 (INES 4) Nuclear factory Sequoyah, USA

5 January 1976 (INES 3) NPP Jaslovské Bohunice, SVK

6 January 2016 (North Korea's 4th nuclear weapons test) Punggye-ri, PRK

6 January 1981 (INES 3) Nuclear factory La Hague, FRA

13 January 1977 (INES ? Class.?) NPP Gundremmingen, GER

17 January 1966 (Broken Arrow) B-52 Palomares, E.S.P

18 January 2012 (INES 2) NPP Cattenom, FRA

20 January 1965 (INES 4 | NAMS 3,7) Nuclear factory LLNL, Livermore, USA

21 January 2002 (INES 2) NPP Flamanville, FRA

21 January 1969 (INES 5 | NAMS 1,6) VAKL Lucens, CHE

21 January 1968 (Broken Arrow) B-52 Thule Airport, Greenland, DNK

24 January 1961 (Broken Arrow) B-52 Goldsboro, NC, USA

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We are looking for current information. If you can help, please send a message to: nuclear-world@reaktorpleite.de

 


27. January


 

Basic Lawwell-fortified democracy | AfD ban

AfD ban and forfeiture of fundamental rights:

With transparency against the right

Legal steps against the right-wing extremists are necessary and their risks are manageable. They could make democracy resilient against the right.

While hundreds of thousands are finally demanding action against the AfD, politicians are staring like a rabbit at a snake. There are “very high hurdles” for a ban on the AfD, says Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faden. Federal Justice Minister Marco Buschmann warns that there is a risk of a “huge PR victory for the AfD” in the event of a procedural defeat.

The same picture in a procedure for the forfeiture of fundamental rights by Björn Höcke: 1,5 million people have signed the petition for action according to Article 18 of the Basic Law, but those entitled to apply are ducking away.

Danger is the linchpin

It's true: party ban proceedings and proceedings for the forfeiture of individual people's fundamental rights are the last resort in a democracy. The mothers and fathers of the Basic Law still considered these means of “defensive democracy” to be necessary based on historical experience, but they also formulated prerequisites for each...

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GhanadeforestationSupply ChainBribes

Deforestation in Ghana:

Forest robbery for Europe's consumption

The EU wants to use a regulation on supply chains to prevent forests that are worth protecting from being cleared. But it doesn't really work.

Large trees rise into the bright blue sky. Off the road, a tricycle transporter with a driver and three passengers rattles through the middle of the forest. Leaves whip into your face during the jerky ride. Two of the men sit on the railing of the vehicle, one to the left and one to the right of the driver. The third person is standing on the loading area in the middle, with a chainsaw at his feet.

The driver stops deep in the jungle. Where a massive tree lies felled on the ground. Its diameter is a good 3 meters at its thickest point. Michael - for reasons of source protection, only first names are shown here - stands in front of it and proudly explains how he felled the tree. The important thing is that it's not that easy at this size, but he is very experienced: "I've been doing this for 25 years," he says. What he doesn't mention is that he's committing a criminal offense.

[...] Nana calls for further training on which trees can be cut down and how so that the forests are not permanently damaged. The Dolta union thinks this is better than licenses. “It's being cut down anyway, and we're only being punished because we don't have as much bribes as the companies that make big profits from threatened timber,” says the trade unionist...

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Terror | AttackTamperingEvidence

Amri's pistol had been cleaned before the examination

Even years after the attack on Berlin's Breitscheidplatz, new manipulations continue to be encountered.

When the weapon came to Germany for forensic examination almost three years ago, the forensic experts found that it had obviously been thoroughly cleaned. To this day, the Federal Prosecutor's Office has left the public and victims in the dark about this

[...] The Erma pistol should be examined primarily for so-called recoil marks inside the barrel, blood spatters or pieces of tissue, possibly from the victim Urban. In addition, Amri's clothing should be compared with traces of fibers from the truck.

[...] As we now found out, rather by chance, the forensic examination of the Erma pistol had already taken place in June 2021, more than two and a half years ago. With an irritating result: the forensic experts from the Institute of Forensic Medicine at the University Hospital in Kiel were no longer able to identify any traces on the weapon. It must have been thoroughly and completely cleaned beforehand...

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FranceNuclear powerElectricity bill

Nuclear energy is becoming more expensive:

Why the price of electricity is rising in France

France has long been known for cheap electricity, but the costs of previously cheap nuclear power have exploded. This means higher electricity bills for households in the future.

Households in France will have to dig deeper into their pockets for nuclear power in the future. The state-owned nuclear company EDF has debts of almost 65 billion. One reason: Until now, he had to sell part of his nuclear power at a fixed price - previously for 42 cents per kilowatt hour, well below production costs. This price cap will soon come to an end.

Households are protected in the event of price peaks

From 2026, Électricité de France (EDF) will sell all of its nuclear power for around 70 cents per kilowatt hour. EDF and the French government have agreed on this. The 70 cents are charged on the way from the nuclear power plant via the electricity provider to the end customer - so they don't arrive there one-to-one. For private individuals, however, electricity bills could become around 10 percent more expensive overall, experts estimate. In order to protect households, the state wants to compensate for price peaks above 70 cents...

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United States | Great Britain | Lakenheath

Threat from Russia

According to media reports, the United States wants to station nuclear weapons in Great Britain again

In 2008, the USA withdrew its nuclear weapons stored in England. Now The Telegraph is reporting on plans for new US nuclear weapons in Suffolk.

More than 15 years ago, the USA removed its nuclear weapons stationed in Great Britain. Now, according to a report in The Telegraph newspaper, Washington is planning to station nuclear weapons in the United Kingdom again.

The reason is said to be the growing threat from Russia. According to the report, the warheads will be stationed in Suffolk, one of the last two military airfields in Britain used by the US.

The USA had already stationed nuclear missiles at the Royal Air Force Station Lakenheath in Suffolk until 2008...

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GlyphosateMonsantoPlant protection products

Plant protection products

Bayer subsidiary again sentenced to billions in damages

A US court sees a connection between cancer and the use of Monsanto's weed killer containing glyphosate. The company is considering an appeal.

The Bayer Group suffered another defeat in the glyphosate trials in the USA. Because of the weed killer Roundup, a jury in Philadelphia sentenced Bayer subsidiary Monsanto to pay damages of $2,25 billion (around 2,1 billion euros). Monsanto must pay this sum to a cancer-suffering plaintiff who blamed Roundup, which contains glyphosate, for his cancer, a so-called non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

The court ruled that the cancer was the result of the plaintiff's use of Roundup for gardening over several years. "The jury's punitive damages award sends a clear signal that this multinational corporation needs fundamental change," the plaintiff's lawyers wrote in a statement...

 

IMHO

The use of the term “plant protection product” in connection with weed killers such as glyphosate is cynical and an example of how greenwashing works. Sooner or later, this pesticide will kill pretty much everything it comes into contact with, so there can and should be no talk of “protection” anymore.

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Climate protectionAntifascismNazi party

Climate protection is anti-fascism – and vice versa

Column The right says migration is “unecological”. Man is like a tree: he has roots and should stay where he was born. Climate protection will only be enforceable in one way - an anti-fascist one

The whole country is shocked because it has now “came out” that the AfD is really racist. Of course, this isn't really surprising at all; the Nazi party had already made it known. For them, this also has ecological reasons: from the AfD's point of view, immigration is unecological, which means they are joining the National Socialists. We remember the formula “Blood and Soil”, which meant the unity of farmers and land, which should be considered the ideal for the entire society.

There is a Nazi slogan that is often printed on T-shirts today: “Trees have roots, so do people.” So everyone should stay where they belong environmentally - why the next best comparison for us humans should be trees and not some fancy animal species remains unclear.

[...] The AfD has made it its mission to fight against windmills. Against climate protection anyway. She doesn't want to trust the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change: For example, it doesn't tell us "the positive effect of CO2 on plant growth and thus on world nutrition...

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Electricity prices | EEGpower exchange | Federal budget

“Stopping EEG funding would be a huge loss”

Hans-Josef Fell fears that the dwindling EEG account could lead to a collapse in support for renewable energy expansion if there is a lack of tax funds. The President of the Energy Watch Group calls for a return to the EEG levy financed by electricity prices and for a green electricity exchange to be created. 

Climate reporter°: Mr. Fell, there were still 15 billion euros in the EEG account from which the statutory subsidies for wind power, photovoltaics and bioenergy are paid. Last year there were no more billions at the beginning of 2024. Why did the credit melt away so quickly?

Hans Josef Fell: Because of the very high natural gas prices, there were also very high electricity prices on the stock exchange in 2022 and 2023. These brought significant income into the EEG account. Due to the expansion of renewable energies, their feed into the grid has steadily increased.

Because green electricity is much cheaper than electricity from natural gas, electricity prices on the stock exchange have fallen sharply, and natural gas prices have also fallen. Now the EEG account barely records any income.

The process shows how misguided the EEG amendment initiated in 2009 by the then Environment Minister Sigmar Gabriel was, according to which all EEG electricity had to be sold off on the electricity exchange...

 


26. January


 

Finland | OlkiluotoOlkiluoto 3 NPP

Defective seals discovered on Olkiluoto 3

Finland's Teollisuuden Voima Oyj has said that inspections conducted in November and December 2023 have revealed defective seals in connectors used for level and pressure measurements. The inspections were conducted as a result of the seal defects detected in the spring. Defective seals were detected in seven of the eight inspected connectors, and in one connector the seal was missing completely. All the inspected connectors were fitted with new seals.

In May 2023, a total of 108 connectors were inspected and missing seals were detected in 29 of them. All the inspected connectors have now been provided with new seals. The degree of severity of the event was rated at level 1 on the International Nuclear & Radiological Event Scale (INES). Although the basic rating of the event was 0, it was increased to 1, because deficiencies in procedures have contributed to the occurrence of a common cause failure.

OL3 began regular electricity production in April following the completion of trial operation. Construction of OL3 began in 2005 and various setbacks and delays mean the plant is some 14 years behind the original schedule and significantly over budget. OL3’s final price tag is put at some $11bn ($12bn), some three times what was initially estimated. OL3 attained first criticality in December 2021 and was connected to the grid on in March 2022. The 1600 MWe EPR was operated at full capacity for the first time in late September 2022. However, cracks were identified in the impellers of the feedwater pumps located in the turbine island, causing further delays.

 Translation with https://www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)

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Japan | TakahamaTakahama 1 NPP

Steam leak discovered at Japan's Takahama NPP

A leak of steam from a pipe was discovered at unit 1 of Japan’s Takahama NPP in Fukui prefecture as well as increased amounts of leaking cooling water at another location. There were no radiation leaks, and nobody was injured and the plant reduced power output by 40% determine the causes, NHK reported, citing plant operator Kansai Electric Power Company.

[...] Kansai Electric in November 2023 applied to the Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) to continue operating the 826 MWe pressurised water reactor after it reaches 2024 years of operation in November 50. Kansai Electric has submitted changes to the plant's safety regulations, including plans for the inspection and maintenance of the reactor for the next 10 years. Takahama 1, the oldest operating reactor in Japan, was commissioned in November 1974. In May, Japan enacted a law allowing power utilities to operate nuclear reactors for more than 60 years. The law will come into effect in June 2025.

 Translation with https://www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)

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Israel | GazaGenocide

Decision in The Hague

Israel must provide humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip

In the genocide trial, the UN court ordered Israel to prevent genocide. However, Israel does not have to stop its military operation in the Gaza Strip immediately.

In the explosive genocide case before the International Court of Justice in The Hague (ICJ) against Israel, a first preliminary decision has been made: Israel does not have to immediately stop its military operation in the Gaza Strip.

The UN court said Israel must ensure that all measures in its power are taken to prevent genocide. At the same time, Israel must ensure that the humanitarian situation there improves, the judges said. Israel must report to the UN within a month.

[...] Federal Foreign Minister Baerbock explained, "There are also rules when it comes to the right to self-defense and international humanitarian law also applies to the fight against terrorists." Israel must adhere to these rules "even in a difficult environment" "in which Hamas breaks all the rules and abuses people as protective shields."

“Israel must urgently allow more humanitarian aid into Gaza and adapt its operations,” demanded Baerbock. "Many hundreds of thousands of people have sought protection in the south of Gaza on Israeli instructions," argued the Foreign Minister. "They can't just disappear into thin air." ...

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Climate change | Groundwaterdrought

Large-scale “Nature” study:

Groundwater levels are falling worldwide

Climate change is increasing the need for water to grow food. As a result, groundwater levels are falling in many places, a study shows.

In many regions of the world, groundwater levels are falling at an ever-increasing rate. This is shown by an analysis of the water levels of over 170.000 wells around the world, which was published in the journal Nature. Researchers in more than 40 countries measured how underground water reservoirs developed over 40 years. The result: In over 30 percent of the aquifers scattered around the world, the water level fell at an ever-increasing rate. In 13 percent of the reservoirs, the water level decreased evenly during the study period without any additional acceleration.

The decline is due to climate change and agricultural use. “One of the most likely primary causes of rapid and accelerated groundwater decline is over-extraction of groundwater for irrigated agriculture,” explained one of the authors, Scott Jasechko, of the University of California. Regions with particularly intensive agricultural use were hardest hit, including northern China, Iran and the western United States.

Fruit and vegetable cultivation in Spain

In large parts of Spain, the groundwater level was also falling at the fastest rate, at two meters per year. In Andalusia, irrigation systems are used to grow tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers and strawberries on huge areas, which makes agriculture and horticulture possible there on a larger scale...

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Disinformation and Fakes against the Traffic light coalition

Platform conversion makes it possible

Russian anti-traffic light campaign on Elon Musk's X revealed

A huge network of fake accounts is trying to spread discontent about the German federal government on Platform X. The Foreign Office attributes the wave of attacks to Russia. However, Musk's Twitter conversion also plays a role in the campaign.

The Foreign Office has uncovered a Russian disinformation campaign on Platform X. The aim of the campaign is apparently to increase discontent against the traffic light government and undermine support for Ukraine. On behalf of the Department of Strategic Communications in the Federal Foreign Office, experts analyzed Elon Musk's short message service

Excerpts from the confidential analysis are available to “Spiegel”. During this period, the experts identified more than 50.000 fake user accounts that sent a total of more than a million German-language tweets. The accusation that the federal government was neglecting its own population in order to support Ukraine often appeared in the tweets.

The analysts attribute the current wave of attacks to the so-called doppelganger campaign, which became known in 2022 and is also targeting other European countries. The fake accounts on

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FinancingRight-wing extremistsProtection of the Constitution

Nancy Faeser wants to investigate the flow of money from right-wing extremist groups

In the fight against right-wing extremism, the interior ministries rely, among other things, on financial investigations. Donors should not expect to remain undetected.

Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser wants to focus more attention on the financial flows in right-wing extremist circles. “It is a high priority for us to illuminate and uncover the personal and financial connections in right-wing extremist networks,” said the SPD politician to the Editorial Network Germany (RND). “We have made this a focus of the fight against right-wing extremism and will now intensify this even further.”

The Office for the Protection of the Constitution has already significantly expanded its relevant resources and capabilities for financial investigations over the past year and a half, said Faeser. "We look closely at which circles are at work here: from the Identitarian movement to the parties and clubs on the right-wing fringe - and to entrepreneurs or private individuals who support them with their money." Anyone who donates to right-wing extremist organizations should not rely on remaining undetected...

 


25. January


 

Network for Right-wing extremists and Fascists

Nazi network around Peter Kurth:

The conservative in the brown zone

More and more details about right-wing contacts of Berlin's ex-CDU senator Kurth are coming to light. He already supported the Identitarian movement in 2019.

BERLIN taz | Peter Kurth's former CDU party friends could probably have suspected it long ago - if only they had clicked on his friends list on Facebook. Because there is a wide selection of AfD politicians and right-wing extremists with whom the ex-CDU finance senator, who was until recently considered liberal and openly gay, is friends: AfD boss Tino Chrupalla is there, as is the treasurer from the board of the extreme right-wing party, Carsten Hütter, as well as the former AfD spokesman Christian Lüth, who was dismissed without notice after his inhumane statements about the “gassing” of migrants became known.

[...] Kurth was a CDU member until last fall and has obviously been well connected in the right-wing extremist scene for a long time. The extreme right-wing Berlin fraternity Gothia apparently plays a pivotal role in this. Kurth is the first chairman of the “Old Men” there.

[...] “Historically speaking, it has been shown that the fascists only ever came to power with the help of the conservatives,” says Polenz...

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PFAS | Poison of eternityDrinking water

PFAS: In the soil and groundwater forever

Toxic PFAS accumulate in the environment and pose a threat to health. Now they should be gradually banned and replaced

Per- and polyfluorinated alkyl substances (PFAS) – also known as PFCs – are particularly long-lasting, complex compounds with strong carbon-fluorine bonds that prevent efficient decomposition. There are more than 10 variants of them. The long-lasting substances are used in food packaging, cookware, rainproof clothing, textiles, furniture, toilet paper and in refrigerants that were until recently used in heat pumps. But they are increasingly found where they are undesirable: in wastewater, ground and drinking water and in food.

The materials were first used in the 50s. Around ten years later, their most important manufacturer, the chemical giant DuPont, discovered that PFAS enlarged the livers of rats and rabbits. Finally, the substances were detected in the blood of the employees.

When processed in industry, PFAS enter the air and water via exhaust gases and wastewater. They penetrate the soil via rain, snow and agricultural irrigation and also pollute food via the food chain.

According to a 2023 study, PFAS in drinking water is a human health concern worldwide. For example, scientists in the USA examined drinking water samples in which they detected toxic substances in 45 percent of all cases. The extremely long-lasting toxins last for decades: highly concentrated in the blood, they damage the thyroid, liver and other organs. Some PFAS compounds can cause cancer, reduce the effectiveness of vaccinations and fertility, and cause immune deficiencies in children. They also promote obesity and overweight, high blood pressure, sugar and lipid metabolism disorders...

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Lawsuit | GlyphosateBiodiversity

Environmentalists threaten to sue:

Lawyers are taking action against glyphosate

Deutsche Umwelthilfe and the Aurelia Foundation are appealing against the new approval of glyphosate. The pesticide harms biodiversity.

BERLIN dpa | The Aurelia Foundation, which specializes in environmental protection, and the German Environmental Aid (DUH) are taking legal action against the EU Commission's decision to renew the approval of the controversial weed killer glyphosate. The organizations applied to the EU Commission on Wednesday evening to revoke the glyphosate approval, as the Aurelia Foundation announced. They then want to sue the EU court in Luxembourg against the renewal of the approval.

The EU Commission decided in mid-December that the drug could be used in the EU for another ten years. Previously, in a committee, neither enough representatives of the EU states spoke out for or against further deployment. The commission was then able to decide on its own...

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United StatesNatural gas | Methane | LNG terminal

Biden and the mega terminal: Is it the beginning of the end of the LNG boom in the USA?

New York Times: Government wants to put huge terminal project on hold. It could be Biden's biggest energy transition decision. And save his chances of being elected.

The Biden administration has halted approval for the controversial Calcasieu Pass 2 (CP2) liquefied natural gas export terminal on the Gulf of Mexico and asked the Energy Department to study the project's impacts on the economy, national security and climate change, the New York reported Times yesterday.

[...] In fact, natural gas is not, as governments and the gas lobby repeatedly claim, a clean form of energy that has low greenhouse gas emissions. The New York Times, for example, points out the indirect emissions:

Natural gas, composed primarily of methane, is cleaner than coal when burned. However, methane is a much more potent greenhouse gas in the short term compared to carbon dioxide, and it can leak anywhere along the supply chain, from the extraction source to the processing plants to the stovetops. Liquefying the gas to make it suitable for transportation is also incredibly energy intensive and creates even more emissions.

If approved, the CP2 terminal would emit 20 times more greenhouse gas emissions than the controversial Willow oil drilling project in Alaska. The more than 20 additional LNG export facilities planned on the US Gulf Coast would release more climate pollutants each year than the European Union...

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AuschwitzDeportation | Argentina

Obituary for Shoah survivor Sara Rus:

Persecuted by two dictatorships

The Nazis put the Jewish woman Sara Rus in a concentration camp, and the Argentine military made her son disappear. Now Sara Rus has died at the age of 96.

[...] Sara Rus was born on January 25, 1927 in the Polish industrial city of Łódź. At the age of 12, the Nazis took her and her family to the Łódź ghetto. In July 1944 she was deported to the Auschwitz concentration camp and finally to the Mauthausen concentration camp, where she was liberated by the Allied troops. After the end of the war, she and her husband Bernardo emigrated to Argentina. The two met in the concentration camp. Daniel and Natalia were born in their new home.

“When it was said in 1976 that a coup was coming, we already had a premonition,” said Sara Rus during a conversation on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the coup. People started talking about people, especially young people, disappearing, Rus said. “In 1977 we noticed that my son's circle of friends was starting to change and suddenly a friend disappeared.” On July 15, 1977, her son Daniel disappeared at the age of 28. Since then there has been no trace of him...

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Monitor outs former CDU politician as a capital raiser for Identitarians

Ex-CDU politician financed “identitarian movement”

Berlin's former Finance Senator Kurth has supported right-wing extremist networks more extensively than previously known. According to Monitor research, as a CDU member he transferred at least 120.000 euros to a company belonging to the right-wing extremist “Identitarian Movement”.

“Schanze Eins UG & Co. KG” is written in the intended use. Behind the sum: 120.000 euros. According to research by the ARD magazine Monitor, the former Berlin CDU finance senator Peter Kurth transferred this amount in 2019 to the account of a company that the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution attributes to the right-wing extremist “Identitarian Movement” (IB).

The company Schanze Eins, for which Kurth's money was intended according to its intended use, collects money to acquire properties that serve as contact points and meeting points for right-wing extremists. This company is also attributed to the “Identitarian Movement”.

Kurth's transfer was intended for the purchase of a property in Linz, Austria. Just one day after the then CDU member Kurth's transfer, the recipient company transferred around 200.000 euros to Steve H., an "IB" activist. Purpose: “Loan Linz”. The monetary payments are shown in account statements that were made available to Monitor via the Exif research platform...

 


24. January


 

Israel | PropagandaTwo-state solution

Moshe Zuckermann: “Rights are rights” – remigration in Israel means population transfer

The philosopher Moshe Zuckermann talks about Netanyahu's strategy, the parallels between German and Israeli ideas about cleansing and the fact that the Israelis learn nothing about the suffering of the Palestinians from the media.

Today 21 Israeli soldiers died in one fell swoop. They wanted to blow up a building and were apparently blown up themselves in a Hamas attack. At the moment, members of the hostages are becoming more vocal. They invaded a Knesset committee yesterday and demanded that more attention be paid to the release of the hostages. Is the mood in Israel changing regarding the war?

Moshe Zuckerman: This cannot yet be assessed categorically. The vast majority of Israelis, as I know from statistical surveys that have now been carried out, say today, unlike two months ago, that the hostages must be freed first and that, if necessary, the fighting should be temporarily stopped. But it is still the case that the government and the military maintain the doctrine that you have a better chance of freeing the hostages if you put more pressure on Hamas, which, by the way, I think is outrageous.

The catastrophe with the 21 soldiers was the fault of Israel itself, because they tried to plant mines in these buildings, which were then blown up. Hamas attacked a tank and one of the buildings, triggering the mines. So 21 soldiers died. Even then the government says that this is just proof that we have to fight even harder.

So I think the government is excelling in paying lip service to empathizing with the families of the abductees and with the prisoners. But you get the impression that she accepts that the kidnapped people will die...

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Bavaria | CSUFreie WählerAfD

Bavarian state parliament elects AfD candidates as constitutional judges

Together with 13 other candidates, the state parliament elected two AfD candidates as honorary judges at Bavaria's Constitutional Court. The CSU, Free Voters and AfD voted for the list with proposals from all parliamentary groups, while the SPD and Greens voted against it.

It is the usual procedure: At the beginning of a legislative period, the Bavarian state parliament elects 15 "non-professional judge members" of the Free State's Constitutional Court. Each faction is allowed to propose candidates - depending on their strength. The entire list is then voted on at once.

The idea behind it, "that our constitutional court should not only be, but also a reflection of, parliament and thus of the political discourse in society" is laid down in the constitution, said the parliamentary managing director of the CSU parliamentary group, Michael Hofmann, in the plenary session Names of the two government factions. "Of course, the mothers and fathers of the Bavarian constitution did not have the worst idea that radicals and extremists could become part of parliament again in the course of our history. But they are, and they do not hide their hostility either."

[...] On the other hand, the SPD and Green factions voted no. "The SPD has a tradition of anti-fascism," emphasized SPD parliamentary group leader Florian von Brunn...

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Doomsday clock | Danger of nuclear war

Why the threat of nuclear war continues to escalate in the new Cold War

We are 90 seconds to midnight according to the Doomsday Clock. The Ukraine war is the central nuclear hotspot. And what about the Middle East?

"Threatening developments continue to steer the world toward a global catastrophe," warn the scientists in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists on Tuesday. Like last year, they set the so-called Doomsday Clock to 90 seconds before midnight.

The researchers said they were deeply concerned about the worsening state of the world.

Doomsday Clock: 90 seconds to the end

Since its introduction in 1947, this watch has shown how close humanity is to the destruction of the world. Since then, it has been set anew every year by a research community founded by Albert Einstein and scientists from the University of Chicago, whose board now includes ten Nobel Prize winners...

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Wind power | offshoreFood

Energy research with a difference: The first algae harvest is due in spring 2024 at the Kriegers Flak offshore wind farm

Berlin – Parallel to the expansion of renewable energy, considerations are being given to how the areas on which the renewable power plants are being built can be used in an additional environmentally friendly way. Various research projects address the question of how renewable production facilities on land and at sea can be supplemented by the sustainable production of food.

Due to their large area, offshore wind farms have the potential to increase maritime biodiversity through the targeted settlement of plants and marine animals. The European Union supports corresponding projects. One of these research projects is Win@sea, which is led by Aarhus University...

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Rosatom | Framatome | Lingen fuel element factory | security risk

Stop expansion of the Lingen fuel element factory

Anti-nuclear NGOs are calling for the approval process for the expansion of the Lingen fuel element factory to be aborted. Russia's explosive role is being kept secret. The Kremlin's access to nuclear infrastructure must be prevented.

The nuclear company Framatome wants to produce fuel elements for Russian-designed reactors in Lingen under license and with the cooperation of the Russian state-owned company Rosatom, reports the nationwide anti-nuclear organization. To this end, Framatome founded a joint venture in France with the Rosatom subsidiary TVEL. However, the application documents presented by the Lower Saxony Ministry of the Environment since the beginning of January concealed the explosive role of the Russian state-owned company in the project, according to criticism from anti-nuclear power organizations.

Rosatom reports directly to the Kremlin and, among other things, is actively involved in the Russian war against Ukraine at the occupied Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant. The documents presented do not say a word about the serious security problems resulting from Russia's entry into Lingen, criticize the actors at .ausradit.

Findings from the federal government, which sees cooperation with Rosatom as a threat to Germany's security interests, would also not be taken into account. As early as 2022, the federal government had refused to approve a joint venture with Rosatom planned in Germany, but has kept the reasons for this secret to this day...

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EuropeLobbying | Supply Chain

EU supply chain law on the brink of extinction: FDP and business lobby attack draft compromise

Shortly before the final vote, the campaigns of the lobby associations against the law took on a sharp tone - this is shown by unpublished letters that are available to CORRECTIV. At the same time, the FDP suddenly opposes the draft and causes consternation in Brussels.

The EU supply chain law could fail at practically the last minute due to resistance from the business lobby and the FDP: CORRECTIV has previously unpublished letters that prove that industry and sector associations have been calling on the traffic light coalition in recent weeks to abandon the most recent agreements at EU level . At the same time, the FDP took an unexpected turnaround against the project.

“It is with dismay and complete incomprehension that we have noted that the federal government no longer feels bound to its previous positioning,” wrote the Gesamtmetall association to ministers Hubertus Heil (SPD), Marco Buschmann (FDP) and Robert Habeck (Greens), this amounts to a “breaking of word” and “would undermine the credibility of the federal government.”

The association is referring to a limitation of liability risks for companies that use certification or test seals. This provision is also known as the “safe harbor” clause. From the perspective of experts and NGOs, such a clause would open a loophole in the planned law and thus make some of the requirements ineffective...

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Right-wing extremists | Acts of violence | Neo-Nazi

40 pieces of evidence for the AfD's aggressive, combative stance

The whole of Germany is discussing a possible ban on the right-wing extremist AfD; the Volksverpetzer petition on the Innn.it platform, which has reached over 720.000 signatures, is accepted by the Federal Council. The current ruling by the Federal Constitutional Court against the NPD (which has renamed itself “Die Heimat”), which withdraws party funding, also shows what is necessary to ban a party. A report from the Institute for Human Rights already confirms that the AfD meets all of the criteria. But many are still skeptical - the AfD could fulfill all the criteria - especially the political significance that the NPD lacked - except for the "aggressive, combative (sic) attitude". The “aggressive, combative attitude” is needed in addition to the anti-constitutional conviction, which will be obvious to many after the Correctiv revelations.

So far, most people have understood this to mean criminally relevant acts and acts of violence, such as those on the streets and gangs of thugs. This is not unknown in the context of the AfD, as other new Correctiv research shows: A neo-Nazi thug is an AfD employee who is said to have boasted about acts of violence. But an “aggressive-fighting attitude” can also manifest itself in verbal and programmatic aggression. In this article we show around 40 statements from the AfD alone that correspond to this definition...

 


23. January


 

EDF confirms further delays and  cost increases in the construction of Hinkley Point

EDF announces delay to Hinkley Point C and increase in project costs

The UK's Hinkley Point C nuclear power station, which was due to be completed in 2027 and cost up to £26bn, is now unlikely to be operational until 2030. The total cost has been revised to between £31bn and £34bn (in 2015 prices), EDF said.

[...] In a statement released on Tuesday evening, EDF said a review of the project had been completed and the aim was now to bring Unit 1 into operation "towards the end of the decade". Three scenarios were mentioned, the first of which envisages the commissioning of Unit 1 in 2029, based on a target productivity for the electromechanical work. The second scenario - the "base case" - assumes some risks in the electromechanical work and the test plan and envisages operation in 2030. The third scenario envisages a further 12-month delay until 2031.

The French nuclear giant now estimates the likely cost to be between £31bn and £34bn (at 2015 prices), with costs rising by £1bn for the third scenario...

Translation with https://www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)

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Argentina | Javier Milei

Argentina's Congress is up in arms

President Milei's legislative proposals are being thwarted by Parliament and the Senate for the time being

Javier Milei lives in a veritable parallel universe. He sees socialists everywhere and categorizes them as “collectivists” just like Christian or social democrats, Nazis or communists. For him, these are all those who attribute important functions to the state. With such an attitude you can win elections against an unpopular government, as Milei demonstrated impressively. But winning majorities in Congress like this would be very difficult. And with only 38 representatives for his Libertad Avanza (Freedom Advances) in a 257-seat Chamber of Deputies and seven seats in a 72-seat Senate, Milei is in desperate need of support. Nowhere is this more evident at the moment than in the Argentine parliament, where there is fierce debate over the provisions of the emergency decree and, above all, the mega law of December. Milei wanted to organize majorities for his projects by the end of January. Since that is unlikely to work, he signed a decree on Friday extending the special sessions of Congress until February 15.

[...] What contributed decisively to the Peronists being voted out, namely their chronic disunity, could also be fatal for the broad spectrum of right-wing forces. If Javier Milei sooner or later fails in the task he has set for himself, Mauricio Macri would like to play a larger role again - but he is so unpopular even in his own camp that a party colleague wanted to praise him for a high FIFA post. Vice President and Senate President Victoria Villarruel, on the other hand, can expect greater chances. The smart southpaw from a family of military men, who likes to systematically put the crimes of the dictatorship (1976-83) into perspective, displays the negotiating skills in the Senate that Milei lacks. She recently proudly tweeted a reference to a portrait of herself in the Financial Times, which culminated in a meaningful quote from a diplomat: “You have to watch them closely. She's ready for anything."

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Schleswig-Holstein | Batteries | Northvolt

Northvolt can build: local communities give the green light for battery cell factory near Heide

Kiel - At the beginning of 2024, the EU Commission gave its OK for a comprehensive German aid measure to support the battery manufacturer Northvolt in building a battery cell factory in Heide in Schleswig-Holstein. The municipalities of Norderwöhrden and Lohe-Rickelshof have now also approved the project.

The Swedish battery manufacturer Northvolt wants to build a new factory in Schleswig-Holstein near Heide in which the greenest car batteries in the world to date will be produced. After the EU Commission recently approved a planned German aid measure with a total volume of around 900 million euros, further important milestones have been reached with the adoption of the relevant resolutions by the municipality of Norderwöhrden and the second location municipality of Lohe-Rickelshof. Now the Dithmarschen district still has to issue the building permit, which is considered a formality...

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Federal Constitutional Court | NPD | Party financing

Decision in Karlsruhe

NPD successor “Die Heimat” excluded from party financing

Since 2021, the NPD has no longer received any money from the state. The Federal Constitutional Court has now decided that this is legal. The tax benefits for the right-wing extremist party, which has now been renamed “Die Heimat”, are also no longer available.

The right-wing extremist NPD, which now calls itself “Die Heimat”, is excluded from state party funding. This was decided by the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe. The party should no longer receive any state funds for at least six years, and the party and donations to it will no longer receive tax benefits.

The court's decision was unanimous. The court found that “Die Heimat” disregards the free, democratic basic order and is geared towards its elimination based on its goals and the behavior of its members and supporters. The party aims to replace the existing constitutional order with an authoritarian state geared towards the ethnic “national community”. Their political concept disregards the human dignity of everyone who does not belong to this "national community" and is incompatible with the principle of democracy...

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NATO | Arms industry

NATO orders artillery ammunition worth billions

Western countries have supplied Ukraine with millions of artillery shells for its defense against Russia. A German company is supposed to reproduce part of it.

NATO has concluded an arms deal worth 1,1 billion euros with a German and a French manufacturer. The companies Junghans Microtec from Baden-Württemberg and the French arms company Nexter are to deliver 155 millimeter artillery shells, announced NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. The contracts with the manufacturers were signed by the NATO procurement agency NSPA.

The background to the order is the support of Western countries for Ukraine in its defensive fight against Russia. It is "important that our allies replenish their own stocks while we continue to support Ukraine," said Stoltenberg...

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entry ban for Right-wing extremists under review

Entry ban for Sellner?

Mehmet Daimagüler, the government's antigypsy commissioner, is calling for an entry ban for Martin Sellner. This is now being checked.

BERLIN taz | Martin Sellner is probably one of the busiest right-wing extremists in Europe, and now the 35-year-old Austrian is once again in full focus: According to Correctiv, he was the keynote speaker at a “secret meeting” of AfD members and other right-wing extremists in November 2023 near Potsdam, where he presented a “master plan”. “Remigration”, leading to millions being expelled. Before and afterward, he repeatedly traveled to Germany for lectures and network meetings.

Mehmet Daimagüler, the Federal Government's Anti-Gypsy Commissioner, is now calling for this to be stopped - and for Sellner to be considered banned from entering Germany. “In view of the outrageous expulsion plans of Sellner and his like-minded people, the constitutional state must put all legal countermeasures in place,” said Daimagüler to the taz ...

 


22. January


 

IsraelHamasTwo-state solution

"He built Hamas"

Former Prime Minister Olmert predicts Netanyahu's downfall

During his term in office, Israel's former Prime Minister Olmert proposed a comprehensive two-state solution and failed because of the Palestinians' no vote. Now he wants to build on the plan from back then. He accuses Netanyahu's successor of strengthening Hamas in order to avoid peace negotiations.

Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has accused his successor Benjamin Netanyahu of deliberately strengthening Hamas. “The continuous and consistent development of Hamas was a calculated strategy by Netanyahu,” said Olmert in an interview with “Spiegel”.

During his term in office from 2006 to 2009, he himself rejected the release of top Palestinian terrorists in exchange for Israeli hostages, while Netanyahu released around a thousand Palestinian prisoners in 2011, including the current leader of Hamas in Gaza, Yahya Sinwar. "Now Netanyahu calls him a Nazi, but back then he released him and helped make him the leader of Hamas," Olmert told the magazine...

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Attack reported baseball bat

Five men arrested after attack with baseball bat

Five men between the ages of 18 and 29 are said to have seriously injured a 19-year-old with a baseball bat in Remptendorf over the weekend. The man was taken to hospital by rescue helicopter. The police are investigating.

[...] According to the police, the men between the ages of 18 and 29 attacked the man with a baseball bat in a youth club on Sunday evening.

[...] investigation is underway for dangerous bodily harm. The five suspects were temporarily arrested. According to the information, the men had previously been targeted by the police for violent and drug crimes.

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Neo-Nazis in court , proceedings dropped

1000 euros for the beating

Five years after the attack by right-wing extremists in Chemnitz, the case against three defendants has been discontinued under certain conditions. Those affected are outraged. 

BERLIN taz | Actually, three more days of the trial were scheduled. But on Friday the Chemnitz regional court discontinued proceedings against three men who took part in attacks on eleven left-wing demonstrators on the sidelines of right-wing riots in Chemnitz in September 2018. The three were charged with bodily harm and breach of the peace. Now they each have to pay 1.000 euros to social institutions within six months. Those affected reacted with incomprehension, the co-plaintiff called it a scandal.

Through the process, he learned, commented one of those affected who wished to remain anonymous after the decision, “that Nazis in Germany have nothing to fear when they attack political opponents.” Anna Schramm, who was advising those attacked in the “Support” project in Chemnitz at the time, told the taz: “Even before this decision, those affected were disillusioned by the slow process. The justice system did not recognize the dimensions of the crimes.” ...

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Transport policycar trafficSpeed limit

Destruction of nature by car traffic

"The 'roadkill' must be put to an end"

Traffic researcher Helmut Holzapfel is calling for an end to further road construction in order to limit the consequences for flora and fauna and the climate. Old thinking still prevails in ministries and road authorities.

Climate reporter°: Mr. Holzapfel, traffic infrastructure construction is being pushed forward in Germany. The Bundestag has decided that the construction and expansion of motorways and other roads should also take place more quickly. You criticize this. Every additional meter of road represents a significant threat to nature - and ultimately to the biosphere, you warn. Hard tobacco...

Helmut Holzapfel: But it is like that. Natural areas are sealed and thereby devalued for roads. The result is an airtight seal on the ground, suffocating life underneath. In addition, the microclimate is changing, asphalt surfaces are heating up more and less water is stored in the ground.

[...] But the car fleet continues to grow in Germany, and the additional cars and trucks need space to drive...

This is really only accepted by outsiders among transport scientists, but they are influential because Transport Minister Volker Wissing gets advice from them.

Even in the automotive industry we know that the increasing electrification and automation of vehicles will in the foreseeable future lead to a more consistent traffic flow and thus significantly increase the capacity of existing roads. A general speed limit on motorways could immediately have a similar effect.

Currently, because the old thinking still prevails in the ministries and road construction authorities, a large number of completely pointless projects are being planned that cause enormous damage to nature that is hardly known to the public. If our grandchildren still want to hear a cuckoo, we have to put an end to the further "roadkill".

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ChinaSolar plantdesert

China: Greening the desert with gigantic solar parks

China is revolutionizing the use of renewable energy. A huge solar park is being built in the Kubuqi Desert, which will also enrich the environment. These are the backgrounds.

Ground-mounted solar systems are not exactly a feast for the eyes and some people will probably quickly think that the land they have taken over would be better used for agriculture. If only that were possible, because many - although by no means all - systems are located on polluted areas.

Solar systems: A blessing for flora and fauna

But apart from that, a second look can show that the facilities are more of a benefit for flora and fauna. Where the plants are located, neither fertilization nor pesticides are sprayed. All kinds of herbs can grow wildly there and serve as pastures for insects.

[...] There are systems on 6.666 hectares (100.000 Chinese mu) that can deliver two gigawatts of electrical power. According to the Global Times, the solar park, which is also equipped with a large storage facility, is expected to be able to deliver 4,1 billion kilowatt hours per year.

[...] In recent years, high-voltage direct current cables have already been built from the autonomous province of Xinjiang, in China's distant west, to the densely populated coastal provinces.

Therefore, a kilowatt hour of solar power transmitted from there to the East today only costs a third of a kilowatt hour generated locally in a coal-fired power plant.

 


21. January


 

Demonstration for Democracy and against Right-wing extremism

Nationwide protests against the right

Hundreds of thousands send “a clear signal”

Hundreds of thousands of people took to the streets across Germany this weekend to take a stand against the right. Politicians thanked the demonstrators - for a "clear signal".

Nationwide, hundreds of thousands of people took to the streets for democracy and against right-wing extremism over the weekend. In Berlin alone, 350.000 people came on Sunday, said the Campact network and Fridays for Future, who were co-organizers there. In Munich, the organizers spoke of around 250.000 participants.

The police estimated the number of demonstrators in both Berlin and Munich at up to 100.000. The organizers of the numerous rallies calculated a total of 1,4 million participants for the days from Friday to Sunday...

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Right-wing extremists Act of violence | Attack from Neo-Nazis

Bloggers attacked by right-wing extremists in Dortmund

In Dortmund, a 24-year-old was attacked by a group of masked men. The police arrested 13 suspects - among them right-wing extremists with previous convictions.

Several right-wing extremists known to the police are said to have attacked and injured a 24-year-old in Dortmund. Police said 13 suspects were arrested. Among them are right-wing extremists who are known to state security and have relevant criminal records. The police spokesman initially did not provide any information about how many of the 13 suspects could be assigned to the right-wing extremist scene...

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IsraelPalestineTwo-state solution

Biden humiliation and war escalation: Has Netanyahu overreached?

Heads of government argue about Palestinian state. At the same time, both act as drivers of an irrational war. You could drown in it. Classification.

As the saying goes: The jug goes to the well until it breaks. This wisdom could soon prove true for the Israeli prime minister and politicians accused of corruption. In any case, he never misses an opportunity to antagonize even his most loyal allies.

Netanyahu and Biden exchange blows

Yesterday he exchanged blows with US President Joe Biden. The background: Netanyahu declared in a televised press conference on Thursday that Israel would exercise full control and sovereignty over all territories "west of the Jordan" after the war...

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FranceEDFExploding costs

“Tomorrow is canceled” for the French nuclear company EDF?

France's nuclear problems are getting bigger and more expensive, especially for the electricity company EDF, which has once again been completely nationalized. But Paris is not only sticking to its nuclear plans, but is even expanding them. Despite cost explosions and breakdowns, some people in Germany are still babbling about supposedly “cheap nuclear energy” and calling for a renaissance. Even China has now lost its hat. The nuclear company CGN has pulled out of the EDF project at Hinkley Point because of the cost explosion.

There is something of real satire when the French EDF Foundation shows an exhibition in Paris with the title: “Tomorrow is canceled”. The foundation of the second largest electricity producer in the world claims to be questioning “our future”. It would be more appropriate to ask the question primarily about the future of the company behind the foundation. The beleaguered energy company “Électricité de France” (EDF) is now so heavily indebted that it had to be completely renationalized last June because private investors no longer wanted to pour money into the bottomless pit.

The fairy tale of cheap nuclear power as such was clearly exposed. According to Economics Minister Bruno Le Maire, the government barely covered the costs of buying back worthless promotions 10 billion euros cost. The taxpayer has received an official debt mountain of 68,8 billion euros, although many presumed but unknown burdens do not yet appear in the books.

German nuclear friends

It's almost amusing that, given the nuclear company's many billion-dollar graves, some people in Germany still talk about supposedly cheap nuclear energy. One example is Bernd Baumann. In an interview, the parliamentary director of the AfD speaks of “energy madness” in Germany. He calls for a “sensible energy policy with nuclear power plants, with sensible coal-fired power plants,” like “all other sensible countries in the world” would supposedly do, even though nuclear power is on the decline everywhere. The share of nuclear power has now halved to nine percent.

Although even the former operators of nuclear power plants in Germany are declining, the CDU and FDP also want to stick to the expensive form of energy generation as an “option”. It needs one Change of coursesays the “Heidelberg Declaration”. CDU leader Friedrich Merz called the shutdown of the last nuclear power plants a “black day for Germany”...

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DemocracyPopulismNeoliberalism

How to bring down the AfD

The democratic parties are dismayed by the AfD's poll numbers, but no one seems to have a solution. There are clear indications from research as to what needs to be done.

Populist parties and politicians are successful in turbulent times like these for one reason in particular: they offer seemingly simple answers to complex questions. There are many of them, from demographic change to the future of the global economic order to the mother of all problems, the climate and species crisis. The answer from right-wing populists is always the same: the others are to blame. The immigrants, the “globalists” (read: the Jewish world conspiracy). Everyone except the populists themselves.

"Especially in the imagination of right-wing populists, the elites enter into an unholy alliance with parasitic underclasses who are also not part of the true people," has written populism expert Jan-Werner Müller, who teaches at Princeton.

[...] Measure one to reduce the size of the AfD is therefore: All democratic parties must consistently resist misleading simplifications and dichotomies.

Populists win when others adopt their positions and interpretations of the world. This doesn't just apply to crude attacks on political competition...

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ProductionEfficiency | Robot

Robot workers on the way:

BMW relies on humanoid robots in automobile production

BMW is researching the use of humanoid robots on its assembly lines and could thus transform automobile production.

BMW announced that it is working with robotics company Figure Technologies to examine how Figure's humanoid robot, called Figure 01, can be integrated into BMW's production facility in Spartanburg, South Carolina.

If the tests are successful, the robots could relieve humans of repetitive and dangerous tasks and allow them to focus on higher-value tasks. BMW says the robots have the potential to increase efficiency and meet growing customer demand...

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well-fortified democracyEnlightenmentAuthoritarian

Supervised thinking saves democracy – not

Correctiv report on “remigration” revitalizes democratic culture. But at the price of maturity, which is its prerequisite? What does enlightenment mean? A comment. 

The “threat to democracy” is on everyone’s lips again. The report by the fact-checking and media portal Correctiv about the “remigration” conference in Potsdam managed to (re)politicize thousands, especially young people, and bring them onto the streets against new right-wing efforts.

[...] Why does the democratic public need theatrical instruments, an authoritarian authorship, so to speak (cf. the root words of auctor and auctoritas), in order to be "defensive"?

Do we have to sprinkle in a pinch of authoritarianism to save the democratic community - or to put it more bluntly: do we save maturity with "supervised thinking"?

Such a view is clearly circulating, and its representatives are numerous. Not only in current political discourse, but also in historical...

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INES Category 2 "Incident"21 January 2002 (INES 2) NPP Flamanville, FRA

Control systems and safety valves failed after improper installation of condensers, forcing a two-month shutdown. (Cost approx. US$119 million)

Nuclear Power Accidents
 

Wikipedia

Flamanville Nuclear Power Plant

On January 21, 2002, incorrect installation of capacitors caused errors in the control system and safety valves. The cost of the incident is estimated at $119 million...
 

AtomkraftwerkePlag

Flamanville Nuclear Power Plant - Block 2

On January 21, 2001 (?) a process control system failed in Flamanville-2 due to an error during maintenance work. A chain of irregularities and damage to various systems followed ...

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INES Category 5 "Serious Accident"21 January 1969 (INES 5 | NAMS 1,6) VAKL Lucens, CHE

It became about 2,1 TBq radioactive radiation released. (Cost approx. US$26 million)

Nuclear Power Accidents
 

Wikipedia

Reactor Lucens#The accident of January 21, 1969

On January 21, 1969, operations resumed after an overhaul. During the increase in reactor power, several fuel assemblies overheated. Fuel element No. 59 heated up so much that it melted and finally caused the penstock to burst. 1100 kg of heavy water, melted radioactive material and radioactive gases were thrown into the reactor cavern...
 

AtomkraftwerkePlag

Lucens, Switzerland 1969

The reactor was called "Lucens Experimental Nuclear Power Plant (VAKL)". The owner was the National Society for the Promotion of Industrial Nuclear Technology and the operator was Energie de l'Ouest Suisse. In 1966 the reactor went critical, in 1968 electricity was fed into the grid for the first time...

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Loss of an atomic bomb (Broken Arrow)21 January 1968 (Broken ArrowThule Airport, Greenland, USA

The nuclear chain

Thule, Greenland

Nuclear aircraft crash

The crash of a US Air Force B-52 bomber carrying nuclear weapons over Greenland contaminated large areas of land and the surrounding waters with radioactive plutonium. Residents and rescue and decontamination crews were exposed to high doses of radiation. 

background objects

On January 21, 1968, a U.S. B-52 bomber from New York began a patrol flight around Greenland, armed with four hydrogen bombs. In the 1960s, as part of Operation Chrome Dome, up to twelve nuclear-armed US bombers were in the air around the clock every day in order to be able to strike back in the event of a first nuclear strike by the Soviet Union. However, on that day, six hours after takeoff, a fire began to burn in the cabin of the plane. The crew was forced to evacuate the aircraft using an ejector seat and the aircraft crashed onto the Greenland ice, approximately 13 km south of the US Thule Air Force Base. One crew member died in the crash, the other six survived. By a stroke of luck, there was no atomic chain reaction when the hydrogen bombs crashed. However, the non-nuclear explosive exploded and led to the widespread contamination of around 7,68 km² of the surrounding area with around ten terabecquerels of radioactive plutonium (tera = trillion) as well as uranium, americium and tritium...
 

Wikipedia

B-52 crash near Thule Air Base in 1968

The crash of a B-52 near Thule Air Base occurred on January 21, 1968...
 

Pituffik Space Base (formerly Thule Air Base)

History

In 1951, the United States Army Corps of Engineers began construction of a 10.000-foot (around 3 km) runway and base under the code name ROBIN (later BLUE JAY) for the United States Air Force. This was put into operation on March 1, 1951[2] on the basis of the Thulesag 2 agreement between the United States and Denmark. During the Cold War, the base initially served the Strategic Air Command as a base for B-36 and B-47 long-range bombers before these were replaced by B-1950 bomber units in the 1960s and 52s.

[...] From Thule in the late 1950s, work began on the construction of Camp Century, 240 kilometers away, a US base located under the ice cap, which was used as a prelude to Project Iceworm to station US nuclear missiles on Greenland should serve...

 

 


Current news+  Background knowledge Top

 

Current news+

**

Federal Constitutional CourtBasic LawParty ban

Up to Karlsruhe?

Many demonstrators and more and more MPs are calling for a ban on the AfD. Our author also changed her mind.

Maybe the meeting has that now caused such a stir, also something good. Last November, Martin Sellner, one of the heads of the right-wing extremist Identitarian Movement, is said to have discussed, among other things, with representatives of the AfD in a country hotel in Brandenburg about a plan to expel asylum seekers, migrants with the right to remain and “unassimilated citizens” from Germany en masse . Since then that through one Research by Correctiv became known, there was great outrage.

Citizens are finally leaving back on the streetto defend liberal democracy and show where the majority of society still stands. And finally, in politics and civil society, a wide variety of strategies are being discussed again to combat the AfD - up to and including one Prohibition procedure before the Federal Constitutional Court.

Now you could say: You could have known all of this beforehand. You just have to take seriously what leading AfDers say. For example Björn Höcke, the right-wing extremist from Thuringia. “A large-scale remigration project will be necessary. And I'm afraid you won't be able to avoid a policy of 'well-tempered cruelty' (...)," says his book, which was published in 2018.

Of course, Höcke is not the entire AfD. But now he dominates the party's ideology. There is no longer any serious current that opposes it. This does not only apply to state associations such as Thuringia, Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt, which the Office for the Protection of the Constitution considers secured right-wing extremist classified. It applies to the entire party.

And yet it was remarkable how succinctly top politicians used to dismiss the idea of ​​even considering a ban on the AfD. The Federal Government's Eastern Commissioner, SPD politician Carsten Schneider, spoke about “a party that doesn’t suit us”; The CDU chairman Friedrich Merz asked the SPD leader whether she also wanted to ban the Union. As if that's what it was about.

High hurdles for banning a party

Democracy in Germany is currently under more pressure than perhaps ever before in the history of the Federal Republic. In the state elections in Saxony, Thuringia and Brandenburg The AfD could become the strongest force in the fall, it is not impossible that she will rise to power. One can expect a little more seriousness from top politicians when discussing and examining counter-strategies.

The author of this text had doubts about the banning process against the NPD. And when someone said that the AfD should be banned, she argued against it: we have to fight it politically and oppose it in everyday life. And: The party as a whole is not right-wing extremist. But the situation is different today. The AfD is more radical than before. Much stronger. And better connected with the rest of the right-wing extremist scene. She is much more dangerous.

There are many arguments against ban proceedings circulating at the pub and kitchen table, in the Bundestag and also among lawyers. The most important thing: the hurdles are high, the evidence is difficult. Also because the AfD, strategically clever, does not include sentences like Höcke's in its programs.

That's why you shouldn't pretend in the discussion that the whole thing is already under way or that the process is child's play. The opposite is the case. The protection of parties is a valuable asset in a democracy, which is why only the Federal Constitutional Court can ban a party. It has only done this twice: in 1952 by the National Socialist-oriented Socialist Reich Party (SRP), and in 1956 by the Communist Party of Germany. Two cases against the NPD failed. But more about the hurdles later.

Many arguments against a ban on the AfD

Other counterarguments are not as strong. It takes a long time and won't help much in this year's elections, for example. Of course, the process will take years, which is good and right, after all, in a democracy, a party cannot be banned carelessly. But the fight against right-wing extremism is a long-term matter. More will follow the state elections in the fall. We have a marathon ahead of us, not a sprint.

You have to fight the AfD politically. That's true, but unfortunately it has only been moderately successful in recent years. Equally important is civil society engagement and also that of security authorities and the judiciary. But it's not a question of either/or. We need a both/and.

The people and their attitudes do not disappear after a ban. This is unfortunately true. But a ban would take away their organization and significantly reduce their resources. “The AfD has thousands of employees who, paid for by taxpayers, flood the Internet and parliaments with right-wing radical content 24 hours a day,” he said the CDU politician Marco Wanderwitz just named. He is one of 49 MPs from the CSU to the Left Party who spoke in favor of the taz this week Examination of an AfD ban procedure have pronounced.

The AfD would use a ban procedure to mobilize and style itself as a victim. You can bet on that. But the AfD does this completely independently of what democrats do. Therefore, leaving a countermeasure is a renunciation without any return.

You have to do everything to prevent the AfD

The AfD is already too strong for a ban. This raises the question of why the Basic Law to Protect Democracy even includes a ban on parties. The first NPD ban process failed due to procedural errors, the second due to the party's weakness. And now the strength of the AfD should be a counterargument?

Above all, the difficult evidence remains. “Parties which, based on their goals or the behavior of their supporters, aim to impair or eliminate the free democratic basic order or endanger the existence of the Federal Republic of Germany are unconstitutional,” says Article 21 of the Basic Law. It is time to seriously consider whether these criteria could be met. Then you need the courage to submit an application – from the federal government, Bundestag or Bundesrat, the constitutional bodies that are authorized to do so. Best of all three together.

Many will now object that such a procedure must not fail under any circumstances. But you can't be sure. The decision rests with eight judges of the Federal Constitutional Court.

And you can also look at it the other way around: If the suspicion is so great that the AfD wants to attack democracy and the rule of law, general human dignity and the protection of minorities - then you shouldn't let it happen. Then you have to do everything you can to prevent that.

 


Current news+  Background knowledge Top

 

Background knowledge

**

The map of the nuclear world

Here you can see some sources of danger...

The “Internal Search”

with the search terms

Federal Constitutional CourtBasic LawParty ban

brought the following results, among others:
 

January 12, 2024 - How realistic is a forfeiture of basic rights for Höcke and Co.?

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January 5, 2024 - AfD ban: brilliant sham debate

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January 5, 2024 - The sharpest sword of the rule of law

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December 28, 2023 - "It may be that our democracy turns out to be just a phase in history"

 


The search engine Ecosia is planting trees!

Search word = party ban

https://www.ecosia.org/search?q=Parteiverbot

 


federal Ministry of Justice

Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany - Article 21

(1) The parties participate in the formation of the political will of the people. Your foundation is free. Their internal order must correspond to democratic principles. They must publicly account for the origin and use of their funds as well as their assets.

(2) Parties which, based on their goals or the behavior of their supporters, aim to impair or eliminate the free democratic basic order or endanger the existence of the Federal Republic of Germany are unconstitutional.

(3) Parties whose goals or the behavior of their supporters are aimed at impairing or eliminating the free democratic basic order or endangering the existence of the Federal Republic of Germany are excluded from state funding. If the exclusion is determined, tax benefits for these parties and for donations to these parties also cease to apply.

(4) The Federal Constitutional Court decides on the question of unconstitutionality according to paragraph 2 and on the exclusion of state financing according to paragraph 3.

(5) Further details are regulated by federal law.

 

Wikipedia

Party ban

A party ban is the ban on a political party, its political activities and its subsidiary and successor organizations. The consequences of this are the dissolution of all structures, the confiscation of party assets and the loss of mandates. The ban on parties is a tool of a defensive democracy and, according to the Federal Constitutional Court in 2017, represents the “sharpest and double-edged weapon of the democratic constitutional state”...

Requirements

If an application is submitted, the requirements for a party ban arise from the wording of Article 21 Paragraph 2 of the Basic Law

(2) Parties which, based on their goals or the behavior of their supporters, aim to impair or eliminate the free democratic basic order or endanger the existence of the Federal Republic of Germany are unconstitutional.

or in fact its interpretation by the Federal Constitutional Court:

Impair or eliminate the free democratic basic order

When banning a party, the Federal Constitutional Court also follows the criterion of the European Court of Human Rights, according to which an “urgent social need” is a prerequisite. In the NPD ruling of 2017, the Federal Constitutional Court limited the free democratic basic order in the sense of the party ban to the three basic principles of human dignity, the principle of democracy and the rule of law. “The guarantee of human dignity includes in particular the preservation of personal individuality, identity and integrity as well as elementary legal equality.” The Federal Constitutional Court sees the core of the principle of democracy as the “possibility of equal participation of all citizens in the process of political will-formation and the return of the exercise of state power to the people”. The Federal Constitutional Court considers the principle of the rule of law in this sense to include the legal binding of public power, the control of this binding by independent courts and the state monopoly of force...

 


YouTube

Search word = party ban

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Parteiverbot
 

Will open in a new window! - YouTube channel "Reaktorpleite" playlist - radioactivity worldwide ... - https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLJI6AtdHGth3FZbWsyyMMoIw-mT1Psuc5Playlist - radioactivity worldwide ...

This playlist contains over 150 videos on the topic of atoms*

 


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Newsletter III 2024 - January 14th to 20st

Newspaper article 2024

 


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