BRUSSELS/BERLIN |

BRUSSELS/BERLIN (Own report) - With the cooperation of the German Foreign Intelligence Service, Brussels is proceeding with the creation of an intelligence service for the EU. The new body, which is to be integrated into the EU's External Affairs Services (EAS) by December 1, will be derived through the expansion of the EU's currently existing Joint Situation Centre (SitCen). The SitCen, which is outside of any parliamentary control, maintains a cell of intelligence services, including the German Federal Intelligence Service (BND). It had been established with the objective of providing the EU independence from US intelligence services and a wider range of possible alternatives of action in relationship to Washington. Experts doubt that its current lack of operative competence will be sustained. Critics are already warning against a "European CIA". more…

BERLIN/GOETTINGEN/ERBIL | | irak

BERLIN/GOETTINGEN/ERBIL (Own report) - Under leadership of the "Society for Threatened Peoples" (GfbV), ethnic chauvinist organizations in Germany are supporting secessionist forces in the Kurdish provinces of Northern Iraq. Already for some time, the GfbV has been demanding that the resource rich Mosul and Kirkuk regions be "integrated" into the "Autonomous Region of Kurdistan". The German Foreign Ministry and the German Green Party are supportive of this demand. For many years, the Green Party has had relations with the Barzani-Clan, which is ruling "Iraqi Kurdistan" and, periodically and openly, been seeking the region's secession from Iraq. Particularly regarding the oil rich Kirkuk Province, the FDP affiliated Friedrich-Naumann Foundation is demanding "power sharing" along ethnic and religious lines, using the catchword "federalism". more…

BERLIN/BAGHDAD/ERBIL | | irak

BERLIN/BAGHDAD/ERBIL (Own report) - By accelerating its expansion into the Kurdish regions of Northern Iraq, German businesses are encouraging Kurdish secessionist aspirations. The German businesses' appetite has been particularly aroused by the riches in resources of the "Autonomous Region of Kurdistan". Reserves of 45 billion barrels of oil are estimated to be in this province alone. The Kurdish regional government in Erbil is laying claim to these reserves and has already concluded delivery contracts with foreign oil companies - most recently with RWE, the German energy giant. Subsequent tensions with the central government in Baghdad are massively fomented by Germany. Contrary to Iraqi law, one can hear from the German Ministry of the Economy that the province should have sovereign rights over its oil and gas reserves. Simultaneously, Berlin is encouraging German small-scale enterprises to do business in Northern Iraq, considered a "boom" region, offering a "reliable investment climate". Observers fear that the economic drifting apart in Iraq - supported by Germany - and the Kurdish claim on the resource rich regions of Mosul and Kirkuk could provoke a civil war. more…

KABUL/BERLIN | | afghanistan

KABUL/BERLIN (Own report) - In the run-up to tomorrow's Afghan parliamentary elections, German government advisors have diagnosed a "dismantling" of the remnants of a formal democracy in Kabul. According to a recent analysis produced by the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP) in Berlin, the western occupiers are apparently no longer interested in "credible elections" at the Hindu Kush. On the contrary, with the help of the elections, President Karzai is given a "free hand" to "impose his will also on the lower house." The report contends that, under western control, Afghanistan has become a "facade democracy" based on a foundation of a war and drugs economy and clientele structures." Whereas Karzai is obviously preparing to establish a "presidential dynasty" in Kabul, western think tanks are continuing to elaborate their strategies for Afghanistan. According to recent proposals, the western occupation troops should be drastically reduced, maintaining only a few military bases for occasional attacks on anti-western forces. Afghanistan itself, according to this proposal, is to be broken up into relatively autonomous provinces, having a "balance of weakness" relationship toward the "central government" in Kabul - ideal prerequisites for western powers to control the country. more…

BERLIN/WARSZAWA/VILNUS/RIGA | | polenlitauenlettland

BERLIN/WARSZAWA/VILNUS/RIGA (Own report) - Berlin is sabotaging construction of a Polish liquid natural gas (LNG) terminal in Świnoujście. According to US media reports, the German government is expressing qualms as to its ecological compatibility as a pretext to delay or even prevent the construction of the harbor, with the objective of thwarting Warsaw's diversification of its sources of natural gas, thereby insuring Poland's dependence on the German-Russian supply. Berlin is confronted with similar accusations in Lithuania, where a German-Russian company's conspicuously slow dismantling of a decommissioned nuclear power station is thwarting the construction of a new power station, facilitating Berlin's access to the country's energy sector. Following the German chancellor's trip to the Baltic region last week, it was predicted that Latvia will soon be open to German energy companies, when it plugs into the European electrical grid. While the Baltic countries are prepared to unconditionally submit their energy sectors to German companies, Poland is still putting up resistance - through cooperation with other West European and US American companies. more…

BERLIN/BRUSSELS |

BERLIN/BRUSSELS (Own report) - Politicians in Berlin are using the German imposed dictate of EU austerity to renew the demand for the creation of an EU Army. The strict application of the so-called stability criteria, put through by the German government, imposes drastic austerity measures on all EU member states, which could even cut into their military budgets, according to Berlin. This cannot be achieved except at the expense of a loss of military power, unless steps are taken toward consolidating all of the individual armed forces in Europe using the synergic effects to reinforce the united European army. Berlin has been pursuing this objective for years, confronting - at times open - resistance inside the EU as well as from the United States. Germany has been pushing these plans to enhance its position - with military means - in the new constellation of global forces being created by China's rise to become a world power. The German liberal press explains that a combat-ready EU Army would "almost be like a new backbone for Europe." more…

BERLIN |

BERLIN (Own report) - Once again the German government's "Flight, Expulsion, Reconciliation Foundation" has caused a scandal. Because of recent historical revisionist allegations of two of the foundation's officials, the Central Council of Jews in Germany has announced that it is suspending its membership on the foundation's board of directors and may possibly resign. The allegations in question relativize Germany's sole responsibility for starting the Second World War. In spite of the public discussion provoked by these allegations, the foundation, which in fact is under German government control, has "made no significant move". This is why the Central Council of Jews in Germany finds it impossible to continue its participation, according to its General Secretary Stephan Kramer. Allegations falsifying history have also been made by other foundation functionaries. Referring to the author of an extremist right-wing magazine, the internet portal of the regional German League of Expellees (BdV) of the state of Hesse, whose chairperson is also on the foundation's board is repeating the allegation, that former Czech President "Benesch had called for the mass murder of Germans in 1945". Obvious incompetence and revisionist efforts have already led several prominent historians to resign from their functions in the foundation. In spite of this renewed scandal, the German government is maintaining its support for its foundation. more…

BERLIN | | somalia

BERLIN (Own report) - The German Institute for Economic Research (DIW) in Berlin, is strongly criticizing naval deployment to fight piracy off the Horn of Africa. According to a discussion paper recently published by the Institute, military intervention cannot end piracy, because the necessary preventive measures - for example for shipping and insurance companies - run counter to western economic interests. These operations do not even have a significant deterrent effect. But, the establishment of a Somali coast guard could strike a decisive blow against piracy, something Germany rejects. The skepticism towards using mainly military means to counter piracy is shared also by a study published by the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP). To be successful, this SWP paper also promotes supplementing naval operations with land-based measures. According to this Institute, it cannot be "completely dismissed" that the quest for "controlling the Indian Ocean" played a central role in the decision for this expensive naval deployment. more…