Transnationale politische Gewalt im 20. Jahrhundert. (Campus Verlag 2020)

Transnationale politische Gewalt im 20. Jahrhundert. (Campus Verlag 2020)

Transnationale politische Gewalt im 20. Jahrhundert. (Campus Verlag 2020) Transnationale politische Gewalt im 20. Jahrhundert. (Campus Verlag 2020) Transnationale politische Gewalt im 20. Jahrhundert. (Campus Verlag 2020)



Adrian Hänni: Transnationale Politische Gewalt: Grundriss eines neuen historischen Forschungsfelds, 7-64

Florian Grafl: Transnationale Gewaltgemeinschaften in Barcelona vor dem

Bürgerkrieg (1893–1936), 65-90

Florian Wenninger:  »Ein Brückenkopf des Deutschtums in Südost?«: Die Schwarze Reichswehr in Österreich (1919–1922), 91-124 

Ibolya Murber: Ein Instrument ungarischer Außenpolitik?: Die österreichischen Heimwehren als Akteure in transnationalen rechtsradikalen Netzwerken in den späten 1920er Jahren, 125-150   

Martin Göllnitz: Gegenterror und politische Gewalt im »Musterprotektorat« Dänemark: Die Petergruppe als hochmobiles Gewaltunternehmen (1943–1945) , 151-180


Lucas Federer: Solidaritat, Gewalt und Repression: Schweizer Unterstützung fur die algerische Unabhangigkeitsbewegung, 181-204


Matthias Thaden: Radikal und transnational: Politische Gewalt von Exilkroaten in der Bundesrepublik Deutschland in den 1960er Jahren, 205-230

Daniel Rickenbacher: Terrorismus, Propaganda und Diplomatie: Die Kampagne eines arabisch-palästinensischen Gewaltnetzwerks in der Schweiz (1969/70), 231-258

Max Gedig: Transnationale Lernerfahrungen militanter Organisationen am Beispiel der Bewegung 2. Juni, 259-280

Robert Wolff: Zwischen persönlicher Schuld und praktischem Internationalismus: Die transnationalen Verflechtungen der Revolutionären Zellen, 281-306

Vojin Saša Vukadinović: Die Organisation Internationaler Revolutionäre: Eine transnationale
Schaltstelle der Gewalt mit Schweizer Rückhalt, 307-328

Michel Wyss: Die transnationalen Aktivitäten der Hisbollah, 329-358


Lucas Federer

Between Solidarity, Violence, and Repression. Swiss Support for the Algerian Movement of Independence 

This article examines the support structures for the Algerian independence movement in Switzerland by tracing the transnational networks of the Swiss Trotskyists present in the solidarity movement. The Trotskyists were strongly influenced by internationalist thinking and, at the same time, by their reference to colonial peoples as new revolutionary subjects. In Zurich there was a small but well-organized Trotskyist group. The Trotskyists used their foreign contacts and a transnational network to do their utmost to support Algeria's independence efforts, notably the Mouvement national algérien (MNA). The support structures and solidarity networks were directly affected by state measures to combat the Algerian independence movement. These, in turn, were decisively shaped by the context of the Cold War. As a result, different references to and associations with the topic of political violence as well as interdependencies between secret services and police authorities on the one hand and the Algerian independence movement, including its European support structures, on the other hand become visible.

Max Gedig

Transnational Learning Experiences of Militant Organizations. The Case of the 2 June Movement 

This article seeks to build understanding on how transnational networks influenced the German militant organization 2 June Movement. In order to understand the transnational learning processes, the concept of cultural transfer is applied. Two aspects are taken into account in particular. First, the identification of a deprivation from the actors' point of view that led activists and militants to seek learning experiences abroad; second, the specific adaptation of the transfers back home. Three examples are examined in detail: (1) the journey of Dieter Kunzelmann and other militants into Fatah training-camps in Jordan in 1969; (2) transnational contacts between German and Italian violent actors that led to the first political kidnapping in West Germany in 1975; (3) the development of a militant cell in Sweden by Norbert Kröcher, a member of the 2 June Movement, in the 1970s.

Martin Göllnitz

Counter-terror and Political Violence in the „Musterprotektorat“ Denmark. The Peter Group as a Highly Mobile Enterprise of Violence (1943-1945)

This essay analyzes for the first time the transnational networks of the so-called Peter Group, which carried out more than 250 bomb attacks and contract killings in occupied Denmark between 1943 and 1945. The basis for this action was Adolf Hitler's counter-terror order, which was limited to Denmark and demanded compensation for all measures taken by the Danish resistance. The article focuses on the most important actors of the terrorist organization, proven international sabotage specialists who acted on behalf of the Nazi regime. Among other findings, the analysis reveals that in the course of their “counter-terror”, the Peter Group terrorists radicalized themselves and acted increasingly independently, without waiting for instructions from superior commanders.

Florian Grafl

Transnational Violent Communities in Barcelona before the Civil War (1893-1936)

In the decades before the Spanish Civil War, Barcelona already underwent an utmost conflictive and violent period of time. In the course of the global wave of anarchist terrorism, three deadly bomb attacks were committed in the Catalan metropolis in the 1890s. After the First World War, the conflicts between the most influential trade union Confederación Nacional del Trabajo (CNT) and Barcelona’s powerful employers intensified and resulted in mutual contract killings by so-called pistoleros. During the Second Spanish Republic (1931-1936) the CNT switched to well-planned armed robberies in order to support the families of imprisoned workers‘ activists. The fact that these violent developments corresponded with the beginning of the first wave of international mass immigration to the Catalan port city indicates the importance to focus on foreigners as transnational elements in this process. In consequence, this article analyzes transnational networks of violence in Barcelona before the Civil War. The first part emphasizes on the contribution of foreigners in Barcelona to the violent conflicts at the turn of the century and in the following two decades. During that time the local press already established the narrative that strangers were mainly responsible for the rise of criminality in the city. However, the second part of the article shows that it was only in the 1930s, at the time Barcelona became infamous as “The Chicago of Europe” during the Second Spanish Republic, when foreigners were involved in the gangs of armed robbers to a great extent.

Adrian Hänni

Transnational Political Violence. Outline of a New Historical Field of Research

The introductory essay of the book attempts to stake out transnational history of political violence as a dynamic and innovative field of research. The author first presents a detailed overview over the current state of research, followed by some fundamental theoretical and methodological reflections. Thereby, some key concepts are introduced to support a more systematic historical analysis of transnationality as an important aspect of political violence.

Ibolya Murber

A Tool of Hungarian Foreign Policy? The Austrian Heimwehren as Violent Actors in Transnational Right-Wing Networks in the late 1920s

The Heimwehr was an extreme right paramilitary movement in interwar Austria, which pursued above all domestic political goals, such as the dismantling of democratic structures and the pushing back of social democracy. Because of its financial weakness, the movement was permanently dependent on domestic and foreign political actors in a complex way. In return for foreign military and financial support, the Heimwehr was expected to deliver services to their beneficiaries, such as a coup d'état in the late 1920s. Due to the transnational contacts of the Austrian extreme right paramilitary, interactions between Hungarian, Austrian, Italian and German networks of violence developed. In the late 1920s, these extreme right networks expanded the foreign policy leeway of both the loser states of World War I and the dissatisfied victorious country of Italy. For Hungarian foreign policy, Austria became important as a bridge to Italy, which, as a major power, seemed to support the Hungarian revisionist aspirations. Therefore, the political as well as ideological reliability of the Alpine republic gained increasing importance for Hungarian-Italian ambitions. Due to Hungarian Prime Minister Istvan Bethlen's longstanding personal relationships with the networks of extreme right paramilitaries, the Heimwehr became the focus point of Hungary’s clandestine foreign policy realm. However, the Heimwehr's initially effective influence on Austrian domestic policy quickly vanished and at the beginning of the 1930s, the Hungarian influence disappeared altogether as the Heimwehr now strictly followed Mussolini's orders. On the other hand, the Austrian political elite had been using the Heimwehr for its political goals in the late 1920s and early 1930s. The conservative Christian Socialist government circles tolerated and exploited this radical violent network. By accepting their culture of violence, the political elite and the populace paved the way for authoritarian tendencies in the country.

Daniel Rickenbacher

Terrorism, Propaganda and Diplomacy. An Arab-Palestinian Network’s Violent Campaign in Switzerland, 1969-1970

In 1969/70, Switzerland became the target of a series of terrorist attacks and threats by the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). This terror wave was paralleled by a propaganda campaign that sought to raise sympathy for the Palestinian cause and pressure Switzerland to release the terrorists. The main stage of the campaign was the trial against three PFLP terrorists in the Swiss city of Winterthur, which was turned into a tribunal against Switzerland’s supposedly pro-Israeli foreign policy. The campaign was orchestrated by Arab League and Fatah networks in Switzerland, which had established themselves in the country in the 1950s and 1960s. It also enjoyed the support of Arab states, in particular Algeria and Libya, and the Arab press. The campaign influenced Swiss decision making as it contributed to the release of the PFLP terrorists and also had an impact on Swiss foreign policy, tilting Switzerland’s stance in the Arab-Israeli conflict towards a pro-Arab direction. Put into the larger historical context, the campaign signaled that a turning point of the Arab strategy in the Arab-Israeli Conflict had occurred: instead of direct military confrontation, various Arab actors now embraced a more indirect approach, consisting of a mix of propaganda, terrorism and diplomacy.

Matthias Thaden

Radical and Transnational. Political Violence and Corss-border Activities of Croat Exiles in West Germany in the 1960s

This article investigates Croatian émigrés’ activities in the Federal Republic of Germany, which so far have only scarcely been researched. It particularly addresses the phenomenon of political violence against Yugoslav state institutions, which became part of some groups’ repertoire of action from the early 1960s onwards. This turn to violence has commonly been explained by referring to geopolitical cesuras and their reception. This article, by contrast, argues that we need to pay closer attention to transnational strategies among exiles. Drawing on primary sources from former Yugoslavia and Germany, it sheds light on emerging global networks that connected some of the most fervent Croat exile factions. Furthermore, it focusses on the émigré groups’ attempts to benefit from the increasing mobility of labor between Germany and Yugoslavia. Both phenomena are interpreted primarily as a strategy to gain political capital within the Croat exile community.

Vojin Saša Vukadinovic

The Organization of International Revolutionaries. A Transnational Hub of Violence with Swiss Backing

Among the leftist terrorist organizations of the 1970s, the “Carlos group” decisively stood out in terms of concept, strategy, and affiliations. The circle around Ilich Ramírez Sánchez (aka “Carlos”), whose actual name was Organisation of International Revolutionaries (OIR), was founded in an entirely different vein than most other illegal groups at the time: It was conceived as a central hub – or relay – within a wide transnational network, with the aim to lastingly connect the various leftist organizations active in Western Europe, secret services in Eastern Europe and Arab states, and the armed Palestinian groups in the South, in order to mutually push towards a communist world revolution. The group was founded after the PFLP-SOG’s key figure Wadi Haddad had died in 1978. Carlos recruited several members of the West German Revolutionäre Zellen (RZ) as well as Swiss and Arab militants for his endeavor and was able to receive (mostly passive) support from several Eastern European secret services, before eventually being expelled from the Eastern bloc in the mid-1980es. By then, the initial plan had already been dropped, but not without much bloodshed. Throughout the first half of the 1980s, the group had carried out assassinations and attacks, most notoriously bombings of French trains and civilian institutions. This article examines the OIR’s transnational function, with an emphasis on its Swiss backing – Swiss members like Bruno Bréguet, Giorgio Bellini and Marina Berta, and its Swiss patron François Genoud.

Florian Wenninger

„A Bridgehead of Germanity in the Southeast?“. The „Black Reichswehr“ in Austria 1919-1922

During the November Revolution of 1918, a broad spectrum of paramilitary organizations emerged in Germany, the vast majority of which were politically far-right. In addition to their roles in the inner-German conflicts, these formations were important with regard to the German-Polish border conflicts until 1921, as well as the conflicts with the Red Army and native nationalists in the Baltic states. In 1919, in circumvention of the Treaty of Versailles, the units were only partially abandoned. The rest remained, if they had not previously been integrated into the Reichswehr, as formally independent associations and communities, since the Reichswehr and the police wanted to be able to fall back on them as mobilization reserves if necessary. From the outset, these paramilitary structures, which were later referred to by friends and enemies as the "Black Reichswehr", showed strong tendencies towards independence and political radicalization. This was reflected in several coup plans and coup attempts, as well as in numerous acts of terrorism such as those of the infamous secret society Organisation Consul. In 1920/21, the Bavarian Resident Defense Forces and the Organisation Escherich ("ORGESCH"), which had emerged from their ranks, temporarily rose to become the leading umbrella organization of the German paramilitary scene. This essay reconstructs the history of the emergence of paramilitary structures in post-war Germany and then turns to the organization Kanzler ("ORKA"), an offshoot of ORGESCH. With the founding of ORKA, the German paramilitary milieu turned to the Republic of Austria, and thus to the south for the first time. There, it began with the establishment of right-wing formations, the so-called Heimwehren, in order to not only fight the Austrian social democracy, but also to permanently shift the power relations in Central Europe. The plans ranged from the annexation of Western Austria by Bavaria to allow the Free State to become the new inner-German hegemon, to a secession of Bavaria and the founding of a Bavarian-Austrian-Hungarian Danube federation. Although ultimately none of these high-flying plans could be realized, the activities of ORKA are probably the most comprehensive example of latent transnational violence in post-World War I Europe.

Robert Wolff

Between Personal Guilt and Pragmatic Internationalism. The Transnational Entanglement of the Revolutionary Cells

This article deals with the transnational interdependencies of the Revolutionary Cells (“Revolutionäre Zellen”) between 1969 and 1980. The militants of this West German left-wing network are best known for two violent joint operations with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine – External Operations: the raid on the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) conference in Vienna in December 1975, and the hijacking of an Air France flight in June 1976. Members of the Revolutionary Cells were also involved in bombings of the International Telephone & Telegraph Corporation (ITT) in Berlin and Nuremberg in 1973, the Federal Constitutional Court of Germany in Karlsruhe in 1975 and three attacks against the headquarters of the U.S. Army 5th Corps in Frankfurt between 1976 and 1982. All in all, the group claimed responsibility for 186 attacks in the Federal Republic of Germany and (West) Berlin. In the German-language research literature, theories and narratives have evolved around the Revolutionary Cells that claim their structural subjection to the PFLP-EO in terms of money and logistics. The aim of this article is to question this thesis by analyzing the specific violent actors and cells of the Revolutionary Cells in a transnational context.  

Michel Wyss

The Transnational Activities of Hezbollah

Since its inception in Lebanon in the early 1980s, Hezbollah has become what a former U.S. official called "the A-Team of terrorism". In fact, the "Party of God" might well be considered the most powerful non-state armed group, with its military capabilities matching or even dwarfing numerous regular armed forces and its illicit network spanning the globe. In addition, Hezbollah is also a pan-Shi'a social movement and a crucial actor within the Lebanese political system. Still, compared to groups such as Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State, it has received only scant attention by German-speaking scholars. Its violent and criminal machinations remain particularly understudied. This article seeks to address this research gap by examining the group's  transnational activities. It begins with a brief description of Hezbollah's evolution since its foundation and then explores three key aspects of the organization's global operations: longstanding support by the Islamic Republic of Iran, its engagement with the Lebanese diaspora, and its cooperation with both criminal and terrorist actors. Its findings show that rather than a mere political movement within Lebanon, Hezbollah is primarily a transnational actor engaging in numerous illicit and violent activities.