|Political alignment||Liberal conservative|
JF was founded by students in Freiburg im Breisgau in 1986 on the initiative of then nineteen-year-old Dieter Stein. The founders described the newspaper as a reaction to the "dominance of the leftist 68's generation" among university teachers. In 1993 the newspaper moved its headquarters to Potsdam, near Berlin, and to Hohenzollerndamm in Berlin in 1995. In 1994, a printing site for the JF in Weimar was fire-bombed by far left terrorists with damage totalling 2.5 million marks. The paper moved to Berlin a few years later, where it continues to be published today. JF had a circulation of more than 22,000 as of early 2012.
Issues and style
The JF has one section for politics, one for culture and for foreign affairs, with lesser attention to economics. There are a substantial number of opinions and commentaries including weekly opinion columns. Every week the paper also conducts an interview with a prominent politician, author, scientist or artist.
The Junge Freiheit ruling
JF was involved in a legal battle relating to the freedom of the press against two local State Offices for the Protection of the Constitution (German domestic intelligence service), in which the newspaper was represented by its lawyer and frequent supporter, former German attorney-general Alexander von Stahl. The Offices for the Protection of the Constitution in two federal states, North Rhine Westphalia and Baden-Württemberg, mentioned Junge Freiheit in their yearly reports of alleged "anti-constitutional activities" between 1995 and 2005, along with, e.g., most publications and organizations affiliated with the Left Party. However, the offices in the 14 other states and the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution have never mentioned Junge Freiheit. The newspaper successfully sued the North Rhine Westphalia local authorities, and the Federal Constitutional Court of Germany ruled such classification to be unconstitutional in 2005 (the so-called Junge Freiheit ruling). Since then, neither North Rhine Westphalia nor Baden-Württemberg constitution protection reports mention the newspaper.
Its prominent contributors include Holger Zastrow, Wolf Jobst Siedler, Frederick Forsyth, Alain de Benoist, Paul Gottfried, Elliot Neaman, Rolf Hochhuth, Ralph Raico, Derek Turner, Klaus Rainer Röhl, and Fritz Schenk. Among its prominent public supporters are also Alexander von Stahl and Peter Scholl-Latour.
Gerhard Löwenthal Prize
The Junge Freiheit issued a prize for journalists together with Ingeborg Löwenthal, the widow of Gerhard Löwenthal, a Jewish German journalist, that is named in his honour. Recipients of the prize have been:
- 2004 Thorsten Hinz, writes for Preußische Allgemeine Zeitung and Sezession
- 2005 Stefan Scheil, historian
- 2006 Thomas Paulwitz, founder of the magazine Deutsche Sprachwelt
- 2007 Andreas Krause Landt, founder of the Landt Verlag
- 2008 Ellen Kositza, author
- 2009 André F. Lichtschlag, founder of the magazine eigentümlich frei
- 2011 Michael Paulwitz, writes for Sezession
A special honorary prize has been awarded to:
- 2004 Herbert Fleissner
- 2005 Caspar von Schrenck-Notzing
- 2006 Elisabeth Noelle-Neumann
- 2007 Wolf Jobst Siedler
- 2008 Peter Scholl-Latour
- 2009 Helmut Matthies
- 2011 Ernst Nolte
- Dieter Stein: Der vergessene Terror, JF, 4 December 2014
- "Das Bundesverfassungsgericht". Bverfg. 24 May 2005. Retrieved 28 June 2011.
- Alexander von Stahl: Kampf um die Pressefreiheit. Chronologie eines Skandals. Die Verfassungsbeschwerde der Wochenzeitung 'Junge Freiheit' wegen Verletzung der Meinungs- und Pressefreiheit durch Verfassungsschutzberichte des Landes NRW. Reihe Dokumentation, Edition JF, Berlin 2003/2004, Band 5-7
- Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung: Lesesaal: Thomas Paulwitz