Civil Disobedience and the German Courts: The Pershing by Peter E. Quint

By Peter E. Quint

Within the Nineteen Eighties the West German Peace circulate -- fearing that the stationing of NATO nuclear missiles in Germany threatened an approaching nuclear struggle in Europe -- engaged in big protests, together with sustained civil disobedience within the kind of sit-down demonstrations. Civil Disobedience and the German Courts strains the ancient and philosophical historical past of this circulate and follows a gaggle of demonstrators via their trials within the German felony courts as much as the German Constitutional court docket -- within which their destiny was resolute in very important constitutional instances. during this context, the quantity additionally analyzes the German Constitutional courtroom, as a very important establishment of presidency, in comparative viewpoint. The booklet is the 1st full-length English language therapy of those occasions and constitutional judgements, and it additionally areas the selections at an immense turning-point in German constitutional heritage.

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93(1)(1) GG; see also Chapter 3. The Greens Party petition was therefore “permissible”—in contrast with the petition in the first Pershing case, filed by private individuals—but the case was limited to questions of the allocation of power between Parliament and the executive. See 68 BVerfGE, 65–66, 69–74. , 80–89. See Art. 59(2) GG. See Art. 24(1) GG. 68 BVerfGE, 89–111. Unlike the first Pershing case, this decision drew one vigorous dissent. Judge Ernst Gottfried Mahrenholz argued that the threat posed by the missiles was so grave and unique that legislative approval was required—both as a new transfer of sovereign power and as a new international obligation.

The Bundestag resolution of November 1983 followed an earlier parliamentary resolution, adopted in 1981, approving NATO’s double-track decision. See 66 BVerfGE, 45. In addition to Mutlangen, Pershing II missiles were also stationed in Ulm and Heilbronn. Südwestpresse, 7 October 1986, reprinted in Volker Nick et al. (eds), Mutlangen 1983–1987: Die Stationierung der Pershing II und die Kampagne Ziviler Ungehorsam bis zur Abrüstung, 106 (Mutlangen: 1993) [Mutlangen 1983–1987]. 66 BVerfGE, at 47, 51.

The Court emphasized that the executive, which made this decision, possessed a degree of democratic legitimation that was equal to that of Parliament. 40 These judicial challenges—although ultimately unsuccessful— 37 38 39 40 68 BVerfGE, 1 (1984). In this case, the Greens Party caucus was allowed to assert the constitutional rights of Parliament against claimed infringement by the executive. This type of proceeding is known as Organstreit or “dispute between governmental organs” and is specifically authorized by the Basic Law: Art.

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