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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 72532 Find in a Library
Title: Development of Terrorism in the Federal Republic of Germany (From Causes of Terrorism in the Federal Republic of Germany, P 25-44, 1978, Hans-Dieter Schwind, ed. - See NCJ-72531)
Author(s): H Schwind
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 20
Sponsoring Agency: Walter de Gruyter & Co
1 Berlin 30, Germany United
Sale Source: Walter de Gruyter & Co
Genthiner Str 13
1 Berlin 30,
Germany (Unified)
Language: German
Country: West Germany (Former)
Annotation: The term terrorism is defined and the development of West German terrorism is sketched from 1966 to 1978, including recent tendencies toward international terrorist connections and government countermeasures.
Abstract: Terrorism is defined as politically motivated behavior of nonestablishment groups with the aim of pressuring political leaders through violent acts. West German terrorism has its roots in the student protests of the sixties when the Extra-Parliamentary Opposition staged demonstrations for reform. The demonstrations culminated in a protest action in Berlin on June 2, 1968. In the next 2 years the hard core of the Extra-Parliamentary Opposition divided into various small extremist groups, notably the Red Army Fraction led by Andreas Baader, Ulricke Meinhof, and Horst Mahler and inspired by the writings of Carlos Marighella on urban guerrilla warfare. In late 1969 a number of radical communes sent representatives for training in bombing techniques with El Fatah. Numerous successful bombings were the result. After Baader and Gundrun Ensslin, two core RAF (Rote-Armee-Fraktion, Red Army Faction) members, had disappeared into the underground to avoid arrest, Baader was apprehended, only to be freed by force from Berlin Tegel on May 14, 1970. An intense period of bombings and bank robberies followed. The RAF gained further support from radical left groups such as the Heidelberg Patient Collective. Even the first arrests of leading terrorists did not slow the violent activities. The goals of the terrorist cells were precisely defined; establishment of safe houses, of an information network, and of a support group of sympathizers. The activities escalated in 1974 to assassination of public officials and the kidnapping of Peter Lorenz. The terrorist strategy took on international dimensions at the end of 1972, and direct connections were apparently established with the organization of the mysterious terrorist Carlos. The peak of involvement was the participation of two West German terrorists in the abortive airplane hijacking to Entebbe. Because of the failure of this and several other key undertakings, Baader, Ensslin, and a third terrorist committed suicide in Stammheim. A series of laws from 1974 to 1978 sought to limit activities of radical defense attorneys and outside contacts of imprisoned terrorists, to discourage formation of radical groups, and to increase police search and control powers. Since October 1, 1970, 341 active terrorists have been arrested. The most important police countermeasures include institution and expansion of units for terrorist identification and for manhunts, distribution of extensive public information materials and films, and expansion of communications systems to an international level. -- in German.
Index Term(s): Antiterrorist laws; Assassination; Bombings; Crime specific countermeasures; Germany; Hijacking; International cooperation; Politically motivated violent crimes; Revolutionary or terrorist groups; Terrorist tactics; Urban guerrilla warfare
Note: Sammlung Goeschen (Goeschen Collection) 2806.
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