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BBC - "The self-proclaimed kingdom that doesn't recognise Germany"

Started by andyg, December 10, 2022, 08:35:36 PM

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andyg

Full article here;

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-63916812

In my opinion a bunch of conspiracy theorists.

But what caught my eye were the "coins" halfway through the article.
always willing to trade modern UK coins for modern coins from elsewhere....

andyg

Attached photo....

Are there better images to be found?
always willing to trade modern UK coins for modern coins from elsewhere....

<k>

Visit the website of The Royal Mint Museum.

See: The Royal Mint Museum.

chrisild

Hmm, money dated 2012 in a story dated 2022? ;D

As for the arrested (suspected) terrorists, this week's Spiegel cover story - in English here - covers them in some depth. And contrary to what the BBC article suggests, "Reichsbürger" have been taken seriously here for a while.

Sure, in their early years that was different, also because (unlike the Red Army Fraction terrorists) they did and do not have a "central organization". Live in Germany, sure, why not. Pay taxes, nah. Solution? Come up with a weird story about why the country where they live does not exist or is illegitimate.

Now "thanks to" various online networks, it has become easy for such people to get and stay connected. All this - including such networks being observed by the Verfassungsschutz/Constitution Protection Offices - goes back to before the beginning of the pandemic, but the Covid related restrictions "pushed" these people. Also, if the president of the federal Verfassungsschutz is (well, was - he got kicked out four years ago) somebody like Hans-Georg Maaßen who says things such as, the "Great Reset unites the Davos capitalists and the Leninists", that is not particularly helpful. (That particular statement is from 2021.)

Wikipedia has some info about Fitzek and his "kingdom" - in German. (The English article is much shorter.) One of the many problems with these people: Even if they claim to not be violent, they may very well resort to aggression and violence if they feel "attacked". There have been numerous examples for that.

Figleaf

In a democracy, it is vitally important that everyone (that includes extremists of all stripes) can vent their opinions, no matter how weird, as long as they stay within the law. It is also important that popular opinions are fact-checked.

At the same time, a rational flock of voters wouldn't want those extremists anywhere near executive power.

I see the non-coins presented here as political fantasies and as non-objectionable as commercial fantasies, as long as it is clear to buyers what they are buying: stuff that nobody is obliged to accept as payment and that is not an "investment".

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

chrisild

In theory the concept sounds great. Problem is, what do you do about people who claim that a country (mind you, the one where they live) does not exist? After all, the logical consequence is that they ignore the country's laws, or accept only those regulations that they deem fine. Taxes? Pah. Courts? Not competent.

Or take "social" networks that endorse fake news, such as Musk's Twitter or Durov's Telegram. Sure, Musk has the right to demand that Fauci should be prosecuted. And he merely voices his own personal view, graciously allowing everybody else to do so too.

It is pretty obvious that those "coins" are not coins. If you want to buy them as souvenirs, on eBay or some flea market etc., why not. But if people purchase such pseudo-money in order to support a criminal pseudo-bank, they should be well aware of what they do.

eurocoin

Of course the recreation of a kingdom of Germany or German empire would be very good. As for the Reuss article, this is of course not the right way. Unfortunate to read about him having become the victim of the far left communist regime of East Germany. Although it does not justify the plans -however serious they were remains to be seen- it is very understandable how he must have felt having with only limited succes fought the government in numerous court cases for the restitution of the family property in Thuringia, which had been expropriated by the Communist regime of East Germany.

chrisild

Quote from: eurocoin on December 13, 2022, 08:10:53 PMOf course the recreation of a kingdom of Germany or German empire would be very good. As for the Reuss article, this is of course not the right way. Unfortunate to read about him having become the victim of the far left communist regime of East Germany. Although it does not justify the plans -however serious they were remains to be seen- it is very understandable how he must have felt having with only limited succes fought the government in numerous court cases for the restitution of the family property in Thuringia, which had been expropriated by the Communist regime of East Germany.

Fortunately we did away with "blue blooded rulers" in Germany more than 100 years ago. Not that elected leaders are necessarily better people  8) but the idea of somebody being "legitimately" in the position of a head of state* not because people voted for the person but solely because of "inherited rights" - nah.

As for Reuß being a "victim", that is nonsense. Right, he was not very successful in getting old family property back. Other parts of the greater Reuß family, however, were - see Thallwitz palace, or the restitution regarding Köstritz palace. And that family has distanced itself from this Reichsbürger, even on previous occasions. They called him "a confused old man" and "addicted to conspiracy theory misconceptions". Apparently he considers every German government since the 1918 revolution to be illegitimate.

* Yes, I realize that in the remaining European monarchies the head of state has a primarily representational function.

Figleaf

A little comparison might add insight. The Keeling islands were once the property of an abusive member of the Clunies-Ross family. He acted as a ruler of a sovereign state and exploited the original inhabitants, including a trucking system, where the labourers were "paid" with tokens that were accepted only in the company store.

Australia, the competent authority since 1955, pressed its sovereign claim on the islands in court over the refusal of the Clunies-Ross family to pay tax. Eventually, the family not just lost the case, it was banned from setting foot on the islands. The islands reverted to their original name of Cocos islands.

Meanwhile, American collector Ray Byrne had written up the early series of tokens, giving them legitimacy and creating demand. Clunies-Ross played on that demand by issuing several series of tokens, increasingly detached from the legal status of the islands.

I think the Keeling islands tokens issued after 1913 are quite comparable with the issues discussed above. A rather louche group does not recognise the claim of a sovereign state, issuing coin-like objects. It gets dragged into court. In court, its claims of sovereignty count for nothing, as they are not supported by any country. Therefore, there is no problem with the court's competence and taxes must be paid. The group's acts and aims are tested by the laws of the sovereign state. The perpetrators are punished where appropriate and according to the law of the state.

What does that make the group's numismatic issues? Souvenirs. Like the cheap medalets sold on the streets of London or the tourist medals sold by vending machines all over France or the €0 banknotes sold in a number of countries. Not as nutritious as chocolate coins, but looking better.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

FosseWay

Quote from: Figleaf on December 15, 2022, 11:08:49 AMWhat does that make the group's numismatic issues? Souvenirs. Like the cheap medalets sold on the streets of London or the tourist medals sold by vending machines all over France or the €0 banknotes sold in a number of countries. Not as nutritious as chocolate coins, but looking better.
A slightly more charitable comparison would be with the political tokens/medals issued in the late 18th and early 19th century in the UK, France and other places. I'm thinking of the pieces like "The Haughty Queen Humbled by the King of Prussia"; the various pieces from the UK for and against various reformers, not least of slavery laws; and the French jetons issued after the execution of Louis XVI with their dedication optimo principi (to the best prince). None of these had any purpose other than to support or lampoon the subject for political reasons. I see pieces which try to make a political-constitutional point today as being rather similar. You could argue much the same for counterpunches applied in the context of the Troubles, Brexit or Scottish independence.

As to the Reichsbürger themselves and their aims and ideas: I find them fundamentally flawed on two levels. Firstly, the obvious - we have a rule of law and seeking to overthrow it by violent means is wrong in many ways. The second reason is somewhat more nuanced. I would argue that the whole premise on which the Reichsbürger movement exists is fallacious, not because of some interpretation of the Treaty of Versailles, the constitution of either the 1871 Deutsches Reich or the 1919 Weimar Republic, the 1933 Enabling Act or the 1945 settlement, but because of a little thing called "reality". If we are going to nitpick about the contents of historical treaties, we must also nitpick about cases in the distant past where monarchical succession did not pass to the most obvious person according to the rules of the day, but was taken by force. Just in England, I can think of numerous cases where this happened - 1066, 1087, 1100, 1135, 1154, 1399, 1471, 1483, 1485, 1649, 1689 (there may be more). Yet we don't dispute those successions. You can't selectively dispute the validity of historical events: either you dispute all of them (clearly unrealistic) or you pragmatically accept the facts as they appear at the time.

The facts as they appear now in the case of the Federal Republic of Germany are that the state as currently constituted is sovereign over the territory of Germany, is supported by the majority of its citizens and is recognised by the international community. That, more than anything written down by Churchill, Truman and Stalin in 1945, means that the state exists. It may be possible to argue, with varying degrees of success in terms of convincing others, that the current state of Germany is flawed in various ways and that the solution to those flaws is to have a monarchy/invade places that used to be in Germany/whatever. But none of that changes the fact that the Federal Republic currently exists and is the sovereign authority over the territory internationally recognised as belonging to it. Anything else is just cuckoo.

chrisild

To some extent this wannabe government is just laughable. This former Bundestag member (AfD) Birgit Malsack-Winkemann, then working as a judge (!) in Berlin, believes she was "selected", Ruth Hildegard Leiding has "visions", trusts the "power of the stars", and talks about marriages of extraterrestrials and humans ... oh, and of course people from outer space support them in their fight against this evil government. Duh.

Then there are people such as Maximilian Eder, a former Bundeswehr officer who had been a military commander in Kosovo for example. When such people claim that satanists should be executed, various politicians and artists should be taken to new kinds of courts etc., that has a different "quality". Oh, and the weapons that were found during the searches are quite real too ...

FosseWay

Quote from: chrisild on December 16, 2022, 12:12:02 AMTo some extent this wannabe government is just laughable. This former Bundestag member (AfD) Birgit Malsack-Winkemann, then working as a judge (!) in Berlin, believes she was "selected", Ruth Hildegard Leiding has "visions", trusts the "power of the stars", and talks about marriages of extraterrestrials and humans ... oh, and of course people from outer space support them in their fight against this evil government. Duh.

Then there are people such as Maximilian Eder, a former Bundeswehr officer who had been a military commander in Kosovo for example. When such people claim that satanists should be executed, various politicians and artists should be taken to new kinds of courts etc., that has a different "quality". Oh, and the weapons that were found during the searches are quite real too ...
Oh, sure - I absolutely agree that the subversive terrorist element needs to be taken seriously (as the Verfassungsschutz clearly has). But that side of the Reichsbürgers' operation is in essence no different than that of any armed group intent on violently changing the status quo, whether it's right wingers, nationalists or religious fundamentalists. What defines them specifically is the other "joke" stuff.