DiEM25 in Germany: Retrospection on an unusual year

For the German DiEM25 landscape, 2020 brought considerable change to our activist endeavours and electoral wing

On 1 January 2020, one day after the European Union shrunk for the first time in history, DiEM25’s German electoral wing hosted a members assembly in Frankfurt. This charted the course for it to become a fully-fledged German federal party.

The step became necessary when at the end of 2019 our members voted in favor of transforming the organisation — which until then had been a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) only capable of running in EU elections. This new DiEM25-affiliated party is capable of running in any legislative elections in Germany, from municipal councils to the federal parliament. Like all of our electoral wings, this party would have to consist entirely of members of DiEM25 and adhere to our progressive agenda, principles and electoral guidelines.

Just a few days after the assembly, the city of Hanau was struck by a brutal right-wing terror attack targeting non-native citizens; nine people were murdered. DiEM25 moved quickly to condemn this act of barbarity and to offer our collective condolences. Half a year later, we joined the call for a commemorative rally in Hanau, an intention that was ultimately blocked by tighter COVID-19 restrictions at that time.

This instance of course was not the only time the pandemic upended DiEM25’s plans last year. The “Billionaire, pay your share!” event scheduled for the end of March in Luxembourg had to be indefinitely postponed following extensive mobilisation and anticipation within our movement’s ranks in Germany the weeks prior.

DiEMTV

Due to the pandemic, we focused on other initiatives. In April we kicked off our local video series of DiEM TV, presenting to a German-speaking audience — among other topics — the Green New Deal for Europe, of which the German-language version was released shortly before.

Our authors and volunteer copywriters covered a multitude of subjects and tackled a lot of issues. We seconded our French comrades’ push for rent and mortgage relief and addressed it in the domestic context as well. On more than one occasion, we explored the grim reality of modern-day platform capitalism, and our members discussed important matters such as intersectional feminism and drug policy, urging the government to adopt an interdisciplinary liberal approach.

Julian Assange

First in Leipzig at the beginning of August, then in Frankfurt at the beginning of September, DiEM25 in cooperation with the Courage Foundation unveiled the #WeAreMillions exhibition in support of Julian Assange and freedom of the press. The local DiEM25 group in Bonn later staged a creative protest, shining a light on the increasingly precarious situation of journalists and whistleblowers worldwide.

The annual summer festival in Berlin

Despite the pandemic, German DiEM25 members managed to gather in-person for their annual summer festival in Berlin. During the event, we diligently and responsibly adhered to the COVID-19 measures. This experience, which included many valuable workshops and social activities, certainly contributed to (re-)energizing the movement in Germany.

Our German electoral wing is looking for volunteers who are ready to build up a new, competitive progressive party

At the end of November, the German electoral wing congregated in another assembly — this time purely digital — and neatly updated its statutes to conclude the legal transition process towards a real party; an opportunity that, if used in the right way, will set DiEM25 in Germany up for success in the years to come.

  • If you can help with organizing in any way, contact freiwillige@deineuropa.jetzt
  • If you like to contribute your ideas and expertise to our country-specific programme for Germany, write to programmkommission@deineuropa.jetzt
  • Also make sure to check out the electoral wing’s website as well as DiEM25’s People’s Gatherings project, which will serve as a source of inspiration for the creation of our national policies

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