After CDU boss Merz told BildTV that he had a significant problem with social tourism of Ukrainian refugees, as expected, there was heavy criticism. It wasn’t long before Merz pulled in his tail and rowed back. He apologized – but he successfully initiated the discussion about the questionable neediness of many Ukrainians in Germany and the conspicuously chronically fully booked Flixbus trips between Berlin and Kyiv. Although the German authorities have no data, they remain true to their line: what must not be, cannot be.
A comment by Andrea Waldner
In the meantime, almost a million Ukrainians have been registered in Germany as so-called war refugees. They have been able to receive basic security since June, so they are put on an equal footing with Hartz IV recipients. In a BildTV interview, Merz now complained about the associated social tourism: “We are now experiencing social tourism from these refugees: to Germany, back to Ukraine, to Germany, back to Ukraine.” In other words: enter the country, pick up money, return home.
Of course, criticism from Red-Green was not long in coming. For example, Home Secretary Nancy Faeser tweeted:
Green leader Ricarda Lang also spoke up:
All in all, Merz also had to take criticism from other SPD and Green politicians, while the CDU tried to put things into perspective. As expected, Andriy Melnyk, Ukraine’s current ambassador and Bandera fanboy, who is known for his outrageous demands, also made a statement and stated that Ukrainians have the right to visit their homeland at any time. In the end, the CDU leader rowed back and apologized:
It shows again: obvious problems in this country must not be addressed. The government, which sees Germany as a world social agency, wants to prevent any criticism of its refugee policy. Merz’s advance was a good start, but it lacks backbone. In these times, when more and more citizens are getting into trouble due to the high cost of living, shouldn’t the abuse of the social systems be prevented by all means and the needs of the applicants be examined in detail?
Especially since some questions arise in connection with Ukrainian refugees. For example, reported MDR about incidents at the Weimar Tafel, because Ukrainians also have access to the Tafel. However, their gratitude is limited, which raises questions about their neediness: “The guests from the Ukraine were piqued that strangers filled their bags, that they could not choose for themselves. There was trouble when an apple had a bruise or the best-before date was almost reached,” explained the head of the board in the widely acclaimed report. The offer of the food banks probably does not correspond to the ideas of the Ukrainians, as a “wish list” that a food bank employee received from a Ukrainian showed: Among other things, red and black caviar were requested.
According to the report, the 2-euro obolus for the Tafel was paid for with 100-euro bills. The luxury cars in the parking lot of the Tafel, which is now full, are also striking: “Sometimes you can hardly get through. There are big, expensive cars and they all have Ukrainian license plates. You don’t have to drive to the board in an SUV!” said an employee of the board. Luxury cars with Ukrainian license plates are actually seen non-stop in Germany, but also in Austria and Switzerland. Those who can afford such cars generally need neither access to German food banks nor to the German social security system – Ukrainian refugees can still be granted both if they successfully state or pretend not to their assets in Ukraine to be able to access.
Often suspected of social fraud on a large scale
In response to Merz’s initial statements, in which he had pointed out a lot of traveling back and forth between Germany and Ukraine, a discussion broke out on Twitter about the chronically fully booked Flixbus trips between Berlin and Kyiv. Critical observers have had suspicions about this for a while now Large-scale social fraud on. Marco Buschmann, who tweeted about trips to Ukraine “at risk of life”, was accordingly ridiculed and scorned.
Can’t be what mustn’t be?
Fact checkers rotate, including the “Welt” now published an article based on statements by the official authorities. As is so often the case, they don’t even have current data, but they insist that “social tourism” would definitely attract attention if, for example, letters could not be delivered – a “problem” that resourceful scammers, according to official opinion, seem impossible to solve. It is therefore claimed that there is no evidence that Merz was correct in his original allegation. But that doesn’t sound like a confidence-inspiring read:
Anyone who no longer “needs” benefits because they have found work or are moving away is theoretically obliged to notify the job center. “We cannot yet meaningfully evaluate how many Ukrainian nationals have stopped receiving benefits,” says a spokesman for the BA. “The background is that we have the latest data for June because of the waiting time.” In general, the data situation is “extremely bad”, criticizes SPD politician Matviyets.
It remains unclear whether and how many Ukrainians are actually obliged to “de-register” when they are no longer entitled to any money: they don’t know anything specific – and apparently don’t really want to know either. In August, around 546,000 Ukrainians were “entitled” to claim unemployment benefits – that’s an immense amount of taxpayers’ money that is wasted here, while German citizens who are not supported by the state do not dare to turn on their heating. Shouldn’t we be very careful to ensure that only those who are really in need and who follow all the rules are supported? As is so often the case, why there is so little interest in preventing social fraud with all determination, especially in times of crisis. In the end, only the taxpayer who generates the money that is distributed with the watering can in the world should renounce and limit himself…