Dare More Cold War

Berlin's incoming government coalition is committed to continued arms buildup, intensification of some aspects of the power struggles against Russia and China and deportation offensive.

BERLIN |

BERLIN (Own report) - The incoming German government coalition is upholding "nuclear sharing," will acquire weaponized drones, escalate rivalry with China and initiate a deportation ("repatriation") offensive. These are measures stipulated in the new coalition agreement of the SPD, FDP, and the Greens presented yesterday to the public. According to the agreement the next government, headed by Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) and Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (Greens) will essentially be continuing the outgoing government's foreign and military policies. Alongside its orientation on the transatlantic alliance, the agreement also calls for the EU to be transformed into a potent foreign and military political power. The latter is to be achieved by streamlining decision-making structures and reducing external dependency. In addition, the Union should be further expanded militarily. In its rivalry with China, the incoming coalition will join a new US campaign aimed at enhancing Taiwan's international standing and violating UN resolutions.

"Becoming more Effective Internationally"

The incoming German government will essentially continue to pursue the foreign and military policies of the outgoing CDU/CSU and SPD coalition. This is seen in the new coalition agreement by the SPD, FDP and Greens presented to the public yesterday. "The transatlantic partnership and friendship with the USA" remain "a central pillar" of Germany's foreign policy, and NATO remains an "indispensable aspect of our security."[1] At the same time, the incoming coalition strives for a more weighty global political standing of the EU. "Our objective is a sovereign EU, as a powerful player in a world characterized by insecurity and systemic rivalry," according to the coalition agreement: "We are committed to a genuine common foreign, security and defense policy in Europe. The EU must become more effective internationally and more unified." The new Minister of Foreign Affairs announced yesterday that the intention is "to reach an active European foreign policy."[2]

Ready for Conflict Escalation

To achieve this, the SPD, FDP and Greens want, on the one hand, to streamline the EU's decision-making structures and, on the other, to liberate the Union from its external dependencies, to be able to confront global rivalries. In the EU, they would like to replace "the unanimity voting rule in the EU Council of Ministers" on foreign and military policy issues "with a qualified majority voting." This would, in fact, bind a certain number of member countries to foreign policies that are in contradiction with their interests. The new government coalition promises that smaller member countries – fearing a de facto total disempowerment – will be included "appropriately" in the decision-making process. What is to be considered "appropriate" is not explained. At the same time, the EU should become "less dependent and vulnerable in important strategic domains, such as energy supply, health, raw materials imports and digital technology." This necessitates "joint procurement, coordination of the production of crucial commodities, as well as the reduction of crucial imported products," to create the "autonomous effectiveness in the global context." This, in fact, aims at increasing the readiness to escalate conflicts by reducing dependencies.

Weaponized Drones and an EU Headquarters

In this context, the incoming government coalition announces it will continue the arms buildup and accelerate the "modernization of the Bundeswehr's infrastructure." "The weaponization of Bundeswehr drones" will be implemented and should "increasingly be included in international control regimes." Which "control regimes" are concretely being referred to, remains unclear. The Bundeswehr will continue its arms buildup within the NATO framework, while orienting toward an EU Armed Forces: SPD, FDP and Greens advocate "stronger cooperation among the EU member countries' national armies, willing to integrate," and therefore seek "common command structures and the creation of a common civilian-military headquarters." "Throughout all these steps," the "interoperability and complementarity with NATO's command structures and capabilities must remain ensured," the agreement adds, considering the fact that the EU's arms buildup is likely to take quite a while.

Nuclear Sharing

The incoming government coalition is also committed to maintaining US nuclear arms in Germany as well as their eventual deployment with Bundeswehr aircraft. "A successor system for the Tornado fighter aircraft will be procured," which is supposed to transport US nuclear bombs from Büchel (in the Eifel) to their targets in the event of war. The incoming coalition will not only "conscientiously and objectivity support their procurement, but also their certification process, with a view toward Germany's nuclear sharing," according to the agreement.

Against Russia, Against China

The power struggles against Russia and China are to be continued and at least in some aspects intensified, according to the SPD, FDP and Greens. Concerning Russia, the agreement noncommittally states, "the German-Russian relationship" is "deep and multifaceted;" the coalition is "prepared to enter into a constructive dialogue." However, the agreement spells out the key points of conflict. Regarding Belarus and Ukraine, "Russian interference on behalf of Lukashenko," as well as the "annexation of Crimea in violation of international law" must be immediately terminated. Lifting sanctions against Russia hinge "on the total fulfillment of the Minsk agreements." The latter can, at any time, be sabotaged by Kiev. In relationship to China, the incoming government coalition announces it seeks "cooperation" with China "wherever possible;" this keeps the door ajar for a formidable sector of German industry. At the same time, however, the coalition affirms that it will continue to "address" "China's human rights violations" - "particularly in Xinjiang" - but also support "the relevant participation of democratic Taiwan in international organizations." Thus, the incoming government coalition is joining the US campaign against UN Resolution 2758. (german-foreign-policy.com reported.[3])

The Red-Green-Yellow Deportation Offensive

Last but not least, the Red-Green-Yellow [4] coalition agreement also announces a continuation of the conflict around the waiver of Covid-19 vaccine patents and stringent measures for warding off refugees. Concerning the vaccines, "voluntary production partnerships" will be supported; this was also the course taken by the outgoing government, which had blocked temporary waivers of patents. Concerning the issue of refugees, the accord stipulates "We will reduce unlawful migration." Therefore, SPD, FDP and Greens seek to launch "a repatriation offensive." "In the future, the federal authorities ... will lend the states stronger support in deportations." It should also be examined, whether the processing of asylum applications "is not possible, in exceptional cases, ... in third countries." Finally, the new coalition will "prioritize asylum applications from countries with low recognition rates ... to speed up the process." This will facilitate the more rapid deportation of refugees, not recognized in Germany.

 

[1] Mehr Fortschritt wagen. Bündnis für Freiheit, Gerechtigkeit und Nachhaltigkeit. Koalitionsvertrag 2021-2025 zwischen der Sozialdemokratischen Partei Deutschlands (SPD), Bündnis 90/Die Grünen und den Freien Demokraten (FDP).

[2] Volker Petersen, Hubertus Volmer: Das hat sich die Ampel vorgenommen. n-tv.de 24.11.2021.

[3] See also Conflict over Taiwan (I) .

[4] This refers to the colors representing the coalition partners: SPD - red, Greens, and FDP - yellow.