BERLIN |

BERLIN (Own report) - Under the pressure of the Euro crisis, secessionist conflicts - some directly supported by Berlin - are escalating in various European countries. Italy is most affected, where the country's more prosperous regions seek to secede from the nation, to escape Berlin's austerity dictate. According to the reasoning, Italy's more impoverished southern regions are responsible for the country's enormous national debt and should therefore be the main ones to pay the price. Secessionist demands are raised particularly in the German-speaking region of South Tyrol and in the Po Valley region "Padania". Whereas in "Padania," prestigious elements, particularly those affiliated with the "Lega Nord" (North League), are seeking to form an independent nation, ethnic chauvinist circles in "South Tyrol" are seeking annexation by Austria. Following the pattern of both Hungary and Germany, Vienna is currently considering granting citizenship to "Austrians abroad." Secessionist forces are also gaining ground in Great Britain. In Scotland, a referendum on the question of forming an independent country is scheduled for 2014 or 2015. Germany would be the primary beneficiary of a weakening of its British rival. more…

BERLIN |

BERLIN (Own report) - Demands from within Berlin's establishment for a more prominent nationalist oriented foreign policy are leading toward a rearrangement of forces on the rightwing spectrums of the political parties. In the governing CDU Party, a "Berlin Circle" has been formed with the objective of promoting a "Europe of Fatherlands." A prominent former high-ranking German industrial functionary, who has stepped forward with a plea to split up the Euro Zone, is undertaking the establishment of a voter initiative ("Free Voters") - independent of established parties represented in parliament. Both of these initiatives are expressions of a rightward drift in the political spectrum, which has been apparent throughout Europe for years and which has led to a significant reinforcement of the rightwing extremist parties in numerous EU countries. Greece is the most recent example. The government in Athens, installed under pressure from Germany to implement Berlin's austerity dictate, includes a racist, anti-Semitic party that upholds the tradition of Athens's earlier military junta. Phasing out parliamentary democracy is being contemplated also in Germany. The escalation of the crisis is accentuating nationalist and anti-democratic ventures. more…

BERLIN/DOHA |

BERLIN/DOHA (Own report) - German President Christian Wulff's second visit to the Arabian Peninsula this year reinforces ties between Berlin and the local dictatorships. The focus of current cooperation is on Qatar, which has recently been serving the West with a variety of military services - particularly during the overthrow of the Libyan government and most recently, according to reports, in Syria. Qatar is also interested in supporting German industry with billions in investments, as well as award up to 190 billion Euros in contracts over the next few years, according to German company circles, which hope to make huge profits. Construction projects, for example, in preparation for the Soccer World Cup in 2022, are a very lucrative prospect. Critics are warning that the Emirate's construction workers are living literally in a state of "modern slavery." Qatar is using its booming cooperation with the West to reinforce its Arab allies, particularly Islamist organizations such as the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, the Ennahda Party in Tunisia and Islamist forces in Libya. This is similar to Saudi Arabia's cooperation with the West in the 1980s in Afghanistan - in their common struggle against the Soviet Union as well as the socialist forces in Kabul. more…

BERLIN |

BERLIN (Own report) - The German government's newly published Arms Export Report confirms the main thrust of Berlin's foreign policy. According to the report, Berlin is continuing to pursue the arms buildup of the dictatorships on the Arabian Peninsula - thereby lending support to anti-Iranian measures being taken by the West. German arms companies are also delivering ordnance to several countries in the close vicinity of the People's Republic of China, which corresponds to western efforts to force back or, at least, limit Beijing's influence. The Arms Export Report also points out that last year, Berlin had issued permits for the delivery of firearms to the Arabian Peninsula countries - weapons that had been used this year against demonstrators. Among the customers of expensive arms supplies are the indebted countries of the southern Euro zone, such as Portugal and Greece, who, already deep in a crisis, had been offered and accorded hundreds of millions of Euros worth of arms deliveries in 2010. Germany has now become the world's third largest arms exporter. more…

Red Lines

CAIRO/BERLIN | | aegypten

CAIRO/BERLIN (Own report) - Berlin's government advisors are debating measures for weakening Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood. The Peace and Justice Party, considered the political party of the Brotherhood, won a clear victory in the first round of parliamentary elections. Islamist parties could hope to win a two-thirds majority. Experts expect this could lead to a less western-oriented Egyptian foreign policy. "The rise of the Brotherhood means that the next Egyptian government will show less inclination toward being cooperative with Europe." The EU must "insure that the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood remains merely a temporary phenomenon and that (...) damage to European interests not be tolerated," demands one expert in the journal "Internationale Politik," the most significant media organ of Berlin's foreign policy establishment. The current tensions between the Muslim Brotherhood and the West obscure the fact that both sides had cooperated - during the cold war against the socialist countries. more…

BERLIN |

BERLIN (Own report) - German government advisors and commentators are warning Berlin against manifesting too triumphantly the openly erupting German domination over the EU that has become apparent through the Euro crisis. "Misconstrued" statements such as, from now on "Europe will speak German," could provoke hostility abroad. Germany must appear "conscious of its power," while exercising in its comportment "modesty and discretion," to avoid provoking resistance. After all, according to a commentary in a major daily, in countries such as France or Great Britain, who lost to Germany in the power struggles, "national pride was hurt." The remarks, euphemized as "hurt pride," were criticisms of the German austerity dictate that not only causes serious social upheavals but is even characterized as economically disastrous. Other EU countries see only slight possibilities of influencing Berlin's actions, seen as a crash course. According to government circles in Paris, "Germany dominates everything." more…