Germany

German train drivers’ union agrees to strike ban effective until 2020

By Dietmar Henning, 4 July 2015

Hidden within a new agreement with Deutsche Bahn, the GDL has agreed to a “binding arbitration settlement”—in effect, a strike ban—for the life of the contract.

Trial of Auschwitz guard continues in Germany

By Elisabeth Zimmermann, 2 July 2015

The indictment of former SS member Oskar Gröning charges him with acting as an accessory to the murder of 300,000 people.

Germany: IG Metall union suppresses opposition at ThyssenKrupp

By Dietmar Henning, 1 July 2015

IG Metall at Thyssen Krupp is trying to stifle all opposition and erect a sophisticated system aimed at policing workers at the factory.

German army expands its tank battalions targeting Russia

By Johannes Stern, 29 June 2015

German politicians and media leave no doubt about the target of the army’s new IFV and combat tanks.

German army targets youth with war propaganda

By Franzi Vier, 29 June 2015

In images from armed forces day, children clamber on tanks, sit in military helicopters and hold anti-tank weapons in their hand.

Ver.di seeks to impose sellout of German childcare workers strike

By Marianne Arens, 27 June 2015

Many workers who had placed great hopes in the strike are incensed over Ver.di’s behaviour.

German child care strike delegates rebuff union president

By Marianne Arens, 26 June 2015

The arbitration proposal brought by the ver.di leadership to end the month-long child care workers strike would amount to a freeze in real wages for 240,000 workers.

Dortmund: Steelworkers protest against plant closure

By Philipp Frisch, 26 June 2015

Workers denounced management and demanded strike action at a workplace meeting at the Hoesch sheet steel works (HSP) earlier this month.

Striking Berlin hospital workers denounce austerity, staffing cuts

By our correspondents, 25 June 2015

Several hundred nurses and care workers gathered at the Ministry of Health on the second day of the strike at Berlin’s Charité Hospital, Europe’s largest health facility.

5,000 protest in Berlin against EU refugee policy

By Stefan Steinberg, 24 June 2015

Protesters demonstrating against the EU’s brutal immigration policy were attacked in the German press for engaging in “political pornography.”

The role of Ver.di and the Left Party in the Berlin health workers strike

By Markus Salzmann and Ulrich Rippert, 24 June 2015

The precondition for a successful struggle at Berlin’s Charité is a break with Ver.di and its workplace organization.

Germany arrests Al Jazeera journalist on warrant issued by Egyptian junta

By Alex Lantier, 22 June 2015

The arrest of Ahmed Mansour is a signal from Berlin that it views repressive measures by military dictatorships as politically legitimate.

Nurses strike at Berlin Charité clinic in Germany

By Ute Reissner, 22 June 2015

Nurses and other caregivers at the largest university hospital in Europe are walking out against understaffing and the sacrifice of patient care for profit.

German Left Party on course to join the government

By Christoph Dreier, 20 June 2015

The naming of Wagenknecht and Bartsch to the leadership of the Left Party fraction in parliament is another step towards participation in a federal coalition government.

Why the German media refuses to report Humboldt University students’ defense of Münkler-Watch

By Johannes Stern, 20 June 2015

Not a single article has appeared in the German press noting the IYSSE resolution passed June 11 by the student parliament of Humboldt University.

German secret service involved in NSU far-right terrorist attacks

By Dietmar Henning, 18 June 2015

Evidence linking the state with murders committed by far-right terrorists continues to mount.

German trade union prepares sellout of childcare workers’ strike

By our correspondents, 16 June 2015

The nationwide strike by workers in social and childcare services was halted at the end of May and was sent to arbitration last Wednesday.

IYSSE delegate addresses Humboldt University student parliament

“Failure to defend freedom of expression would have dire consequences”

By Sven Wurm, 13 June 2015

Presented here is the speech by Sven Wurm of the International Youth and Students for Social Equality to the June 11 meeting of the student parliament.

Students in Frankfurt, Germany support fight against war propaganda

By our correspondents, 13 June 2015

The conflict over freedom of expression at Humboldt University in Berlin is being followed with great interest at other universities.

German army receives €8 billion for new missile system and warship

By Johannes Stern, 12 June 2015

The German army is to be equipped with the MEADS tactical air defense system and the multi-role combat ship 180 by the year 2025.

Students at Humboldt University pass resolution defending free speech

By our correspondents, 12 June 2015

The student parliament at Humboldt University in Berlin, Germany adopted a resolution yesterday denouncing attacks against students' fundamental right to criticize professors.

Deutsche Post workers continue strike

By Gustav Kemper, 12 June 2015

Postal workers in Germany have been on strike for more than 30 days to oppose a 20 percent pay cut.

Germany: The reactionary politics of IG Metall and the works council at Siemens

By Elisabeth Zimmermann, 10 June 2015

IG Metall has responded to the announcement of layoffs at Siemens by calling for increasing the company’s competitiveness at the expense of the workforce.

Student groups defend freedom of expression at Berlin’s Humboldt University

By Christoph Dreier, 10 June 2015

The student representatives of three departments at Humboldt University in Berlin published a joint statement defending students against attacks by the media.

German ver.di trade union calls off childcare workers strike

By Marianne Arens, 9 June 2015

Many childcare workers are furious over the sellout of the strike.

Fraud charges and shareholder revolt at Deutsche Bank

By Verena Nees, 8 June 2015

The furore surrounding Deutsche Bank has profound causes rooted in economic and political developments since the 2008 financial crisis.

German Left Party on course for war and joining a government

By Johannes Stern, 6 June 2015

The Left Party’s trajectory recalls that of the Green Party in 1998, save that it has already unveiled its reactionary character before entering into government at the federal level.

Al-Sisi in Berlin: Red carpet for the hangman of Cairo

By Johannes Stern, 5 June 2015

No other event could have better exposed the “human rights” pretenses of the German ruling class than the official reception of Egyptian dictator Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in Berlin.

Egyptian dictator al-Sisi visits Berlin

By Johannes Stern, 3 June 2015

Al-Sisi’s visit is a warning to the working class: a ruling class eager to work closely with brutal military dictatorships is also prepared to adopt their methods at home.

New details on connections between German intelligence and neo-Nazis

By Dietmar Henning, 1 June 2015

Mounting evidence indicates that the German intelligence agency aimed to foster right-wing political extremism.

Humboldt University professor Herfried Münkler calls for German leadership in Europe

By Johannes Stern, 30 May 2015

Münkler’s proposals correspond to the plans of the German ruling elite to again establish the country as a political and military “peacekeeping force” in Europe and in the world.

Münkler receives support from the far right in Germany

By Peter Schwarz, 29 May 2015

The weekly paper Junge Freiheit, mouthpiece of the New Right, has declared its support for the campaign against critical students at Berlin’s Humboldt University.

The contract unity law and the return of German militarism

By Ulrich Rippert, 29 May 2015

As was the case at the beginning of World War I a century ago, the trade unions are cementing a ceasefire with the government and suppressing strikes in support of militarism.

Works council elections at Germany’s ThyssenKrupp: What way forward?

By Dietmar Henning, 28 May 2015

The problems confronting ThyssenKrupp workers in Duisburg cannot be resolved on the basis of a trade unionist strategy.

NSA affair creates tensions between Berlin and Washington

By Gustav Kemper, 27 May 2015

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper threatened to scrap cooperation with the German secret services because of leaks to the media.

Herfried Münkler’s interview in Die Zeit: State-imposed conformism like 1933

By Johannes Stern, 25 May 2015

In an interview titled “Resentments as in 1933,” political science professor Herfried Münkler has accused anti-militarist students of Nazism and anti-Semitism.

German train drivers’ union calls off strike and agrees to arbitration

By Ulrich Rippert, 22 May 2015

The strike was called off Thursday, the day before the Bundestag takes up the contentious “contract unity” bill, which would essentially ban strikes by smaller unions in an industry.

“Münkler-Watch” and the reproach of anonymity: A red herring

By Peter Schwarz, 22 May 2015

A student blog criticizing the lectures of Herfried Münkler at Humboldt University has been attacked for its anonymity in an effort to distract attention from the real issues at stake.

German police officer accused of torturing refugees

By Verena Nees, 21 May 2015

A federal police officer in Hannover has been accused of assaulting and dragging a shackled detainee and forcing another to eat rancid pork while he was held down on the floor.

German train drivers launch new strikes

By Dietmar Henning, 21 May 2015

After a six-day walkout earlier this month, German train drivers resumed strikes on freight lines and passenger lines.

German postal service threatens to lay off strikers while deploying strike-breakers

By Gustav Kemper, 20 May 2015

Despite major attacks on postal workers, their union has restricted the strike to regional centres and only called on a small number of employees to participate.

Defend student free speech at Humboldt University! Stop state-sponsored censorship!

Partei für Soziale Gleichheit (PSG) and International Youth and Students for Social Equality, 19 May 2015

The PSG and the IYSSE unequivocally support the students who publish the blog “Münkler-Watch” and have become the target of a massive intimidation campaign.

“Marx Is Muss” congress: Germany’s pseudo-left discusses war policy and austerity

By Johannes Stern, 16 May 2015

The Marx 21 congress that began in Berlin on May 14 has absolutely nothing to do with socialist politics or the class struggle.

Nationwide strike by child care workers in Germany

By Marianne Arens, 14 May 2015

Striking workers in child care and social services confront not only their employers, but also the trade unions.

German SPD achieves worst result in Bremen state elections since World War II

By Dietmar Henning, 13 May 2015

The outcome of the Bremen state elections exposes the immense gulf between official politics and the working class in Germany

Berlin police powers strengthened

By Bernd Reinhardt, 13 May 2015

The changes to Berlin’s police powers reveal a mentality that places so-called security needs above the protection of civil liberties.

Siemens announces massive job cuts worldwide

By Dietmar Henning, 12 May 2015

The new job cuts were agreed upon between the trade union, works council and management.

Video: “It’s about the defense of the right to strike”

Train drivers demonstrate in Berlin

By Julian Fischer and Hiram Lee, 9 May 2015

Several hundred striking train drivers and conductors demonstrated in front of the main train station in Berlin on Wednesday.

German court rejects claims of Kunduz victims

By Verena Nees, 9 May 2015

The higher regional court in Cologne has rejected the compensation claims of two survivors of the notorious 2009 massacre perpetrated by the German armed forces.

German train drivers’ strike: “This is about our basic right to strike”

By Marianne Arens, 8 May 2015

Freight train employees across Germany have been on strike since Monday afternoon, with passenger services joining on Tuesday.

The British election as seen from Europe

By Peter Schwarz, 7 May 2015

The European media regard the British general election as a source of economic instability and a step towards the fracturing of the European Union into its national components.

Statues of Edward Snowden, Julian Assange and Bradley Manning unveiled in Berlin

By Stefan Steinberg, 7 May 2015

“Art is called upon to make a choice, to show a new direction,” explains Italian artist Davide Dormino.

The political issues in the German train drivers strike

By Ulrich Rippert, 7 May 2015

The strike by train drivers is doomed to failure if it remains under the control of the GDL union and is subordinated to the nationalist and pro-capitalist perspective.

German press demands more effective tanks for war against Russia

By Johannes Stern, 4 May 2015

A commentary in one of the major German newspapers is calling for German tanks to be equipped with depleted uranium ammunition to destroy Russian tanks.

Former IG Metall union leader heads Volkswagen supervisory board

By Verena Nees and Dietmar Henning, 1 May 2015

As chairman of IG Metall, Berthold Huber turned the trade union into a profitable enterprise that serves major corporations as a consultant and specialist in corporate restructuring.

Deutsche Bank: Union trades jobs for speculation

By Gustav Kemper and Peter Schwarz, 30 April 2015

Deutsche Bank is now concentrating on international speculation and substantially downsizing its business with smaller customers.

German child care workers vote for strike action

By Verena Nees, 28 April 2015

The 240,000 child care workers in German public-sector institutions are demanding a salary increase.

US settlement shields Deutsche Bank from criminal prosecution for rigging Libor

By Gabriel Black and Barry Grey, 27 April 2015

The monetary settlement with the US Justice Department protects the bank’s executives from criminal liability for the rigging of the global interest rate.

Stress and speedup in German GM-Opel plants

By Marianne Arens, 27 April 2015

The IG Metall trade union is collaborating with management to pressure workers to increase output at GM-Opel factories.

Greece’s Syriza government signals pension cuts

By Christoph Dreier, 25 April 2015

The elimination of early retirement benefits, which Syriza previously declared a “red line” that would not be crossed, is one of the central demands of the troika.

An appraisal of German writer Günter Grass: 1927-2015

By Sybille Fuchs, Wolfgang Weber and Peter Schwarz, 25 April 2015

Günter Grass, who died at the age of 87 on April 13, was one of Germany’s most outstanding storytellers and a man who remained true to his political principles throughout his life.

German train drivers strike for seventh time in a year

By Dietmar Henning, 24 April 2015

Deutsche Bahn management is delaying talks with German train drivers’ union (GDL) until the enforcement of a new law that will effectively outlaw strike action.

Workers at Germany’s Postbank begin indefinite strike

By Gustav Kemper, 23 April 2015

As part of its gradual takeover of Postbank, Deutsche Bank has carried out a radical cost-cutting program, including outsourcing and wage cuts.

Trial of former SS soldier begins in Germany

By Elisabeth Zimmermann, 22 April 2015

The trial of Oskar Gröning is likely to be one of the last trials of living perpetrators of the mass war crimes committed by the Nazis.

German government introduces new mass data retention regulations

By Johannes Stern and Denis Krassnin, 20 April 2015

The re-introduction of mass data retention is another step towards a total surveillance state.

Banking group HGAA stokes conflict between Vienna and Munich

By Markus Salzmann, 18 April 2015

The decision of the Austrian government to no longer pay the debts of banking group HGAA has provoked conflicts in Bavaria.

Octoberfest bombing: German government blocks information on intelligence agency involvement

By Dietmar Henning, 18 April 2015

Almost 35 years after the worst right-wing extremist attack in post-war Germany, the government is withholding important documents.

Germany: Behind the conflict at Volkswagen

By Ulrich Rippert, 17 April 2015

A public attack by Volkswagen chief executive Ferdinand Piëch on the chairman of the board has provoked a leadership crisis at Europe’s largest auto company.

German professor Herfried Münkler: Combat drones and poison gas are “humane” weapons

By Johannes Stern, 16 April 2015

That Münkler now places poison gas in the same category as drones shows that inhumane and militaristic attitudes are once again running rampant in ruling circles in Berlin.

Right-wing extremist Geert Wilders delivers diatribe in Dresden, Germany

By Christoph Dreier, 15 April 2015

Although only a few thousand people came to the event, the major media outlets sought to use Wilders’ appearance to resurrect the Islamophobic movement.

World famous German author Günter Grass dies at age 87

By Peter Schwarz, 14 April 2015

Grass was one of the most important German writers of the 20th century and was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1999.

Why is Syriza demanding reparations from Germany?

By Peter Schwarz, 14 April 2015

Demands for reparations are an inappropriate means of combating fascism, war and social attacks. They do nothing to address their causes, but rather serve to reproduce them.

German postal workers strike against outsourcing of jobs

By Gustav Kemper, 13 April 2015

While the trade union was forced to call a short-term strike, it is involved at the highest level in the restructuring of Deutsche Post and associated attacks on working conditions.

NATO rearmament increases risk of war in Europe

By Johannes Stern, 11 April 2015

NATO’s military buildup in Eastern Europe is increasingly taking the form of preparation for war against Russia.

German Left Party leader praises right-wing politician Peter Gauweiler

By Ulrich Rippert, 10 April 2015

Following the resignation of Peter Gauweiler from political office, Left Party stalwart Oskar Lafontaine praised the CSU right-winger in the German tabloid Bild.

Third witness dies in German trial against far-right NSU

By Dietmar Henning, 8 April 2015

Melissa M. is the third witness to die under mysterious circumstances in the investigation into murders committed by the National Socialist Underground.

Germany: Speculation mounts over Thyssen Krupp plan to outsource steel production

By Elisabeth Zimmerman, 7 April 2015

Speculation is growing at Germany’s largest technology firm that Thyssen Krupp may be preparing to separate from its steel production division, affecting some 26,000 jobs.

Germanwings crash: Details are clearer but motive remains unknown

By Christoph Dreier, 3 April 2015

Ten days after the crash of Germanwings flight 4U9525, recovery teams have located the plane’s flight data recorder.

Germany and France stage joint military build-up

By Peter Schwarz, 3 April 2015

Berlin and Paris are planning to jointly build a combat drone and work together more closely on satellite reconnaissance.

German public service contract: Teachers sold out once again

By Dietmar Henning, 1 April 2015

Anger is running high among trade union members over the latest deal.

The return of the Bismarck cult

By Peter Schwarz, 1 April 2015

Two hundred years after his birth, the “Iron Chancellor” is being paraded as a role model for Germany, especially in relation to foreign policy.

German army expands its submarine fleet

By Denis Krasnin, 31 March 2015

A current strategy paper states that the German navy is preparing to militarily defend “free and unhindered world trade as the basis for the welfare of Germany and Europe.”

The social and political context of the Germanwings disaster

By Peter Schwarz, 28 March 2015

To understand the actions of Andreas Lubitz, who plunged Germanwings Flight 9525 into a French mountainside, one must consider not only his individual illness, but also the society in which he lived.

French prosecutor says copilot deliberately crashed Germanwings flight

By Stefan Steinberg, 27 March 2015

According to French prosecutors in Marseille, the German copilot of the Airbus A320 deliberately flew the jetliner into a mountain in the Alps.

The bankrupt perspective of Blockupy

By Christoph Dreier and Peter Schwarz, 27 March 2015

The Blockupy protest against the European Central Bank in Frankfurt, Germany, was a political cover for the right wing politics of Syriza and the Left Party.

Syriza leader Tsipras meets with Left Party leaders in Berlin

By Johannes Stern, 26 March 2015

The Left Party is firmly backing Tsipras precisely at the point when he is uncritically accepting the line of the German government and the austerity policy of the European banks.

German Airbus crash in southern France kills 150

By Stefan Steinberg, 25 March 2015

The plane, which belonged to a subsidiary of Lufthansa, had recently been grounded due to technical problems.

Tsipras in Berlin: Germany and Greece pledge “cooperation” in imposing austerity

By Johannes Stern, 24 March 2015

Syriza has completely capitulated to the demands of the European banks, making clear that it will not only continue the austerity measures dictated by the “troika,” but will intensify them.

Germany: ThyssenKrupp workers force union-dominated works council to resign

By Dietmar Henning, 24 March 2015

Workers supporting the opposition “List 5” have succeeded in their challenge to the result of the works council elections last year at steelmaker ThyssenKrupp.

German government plans new “anti-terrorism unit”

By Johannes Stern, 23 March 2015

The build-up of a paramilitary police force in Germany under the framework of the "war on terror" is part of a massive military expansion at home and abroad.

Strike by Lufthansa pilots continues

By Philipp Frisch and Ulrich Rippert, 21 March 2015

Management wants to force the pilots to submit and make an example of them in order to push through worse conditions for the other 110,000 staff.

German Social Democrat leader backs mass data retention by telecommunication companies

By Denis Krasnin, 21 March 2015

Sigmar Gabriel, SPD chairman, spoke out in favour of a data storage law in an interview with radio broadcaster Deutschlandfunk.

German government increases defence budget by €8 billion

By Johannes Stern, 20 March 2015

The rapid boost to military spending, amounting to an increase of more than 6.2 percent, heralds a new stage in the return of German militarism.

Attack on democratic rights in Germany follows Blockupy protest

By Christoph Dreier, 20 March 2015

The German media and politicians have responded to the Blockupy protests against the ECB on Wednesday by denouncing the protesters and demanding restrictions on the freedom of assembly.

Massive police mobilization against anti-austerity protest in Frankfurt, Germany

By Christoph Dreier and Alex Lantier, 19 March 2015

Police arrested 350 people after thousands of protesters from across Europe converged on Frankfurt to protest austerity measures targeting Greece and other countries.

Germany: More links revealed between secret service and NSU terror gang

By Dietmar Henning, 18 March 2015

Where state activities end and those of the far-right terrorist group National Socialist Underground begin is increasingly murky and undefined.

Berlin professor sees Germany as the “taskmaster” of Europe

By Peter Schwarz, 13 March 2015

In his new book, Power in the Center, political scientist Herfried Münkler, who has close ties to the political establishment, argues openly for German hegemony in Europe.

Germany’s poverty trap for welfare recipients

By Elisabeth Zimmermann, 11 March 2015

A recent German television program described the government’s punitive policy of cutting unemployment benefits for people involved in job training.

German teachers and pre-school workers stage protest strike

By our reporter, 10 March 2015

There is deep mistrust among teachers of the trade union leadership, which two years ago abandoned the central demand of equal pay for equal work.

Poverty in Germany reaches a record high

By Denis Krassnin, 10 March 2015

The mounting gap between rich and poor in Germany is causing the country to fragment into disparate socio-economic regions.