- Crimean parliament votes to secede from Ukraine
- Obama tells Putin: sanctions for ‘violation of sovereignty’
- German chancellor Angela Merkel: ‘We’re ready to act’
The United States and the European Union on Thursday unveiled sanctions to punish Russia for occupying Crimea, imposing visa restrictions on individuals and sharpening rhetoric in what has rapidly degenerated into the worst east-west crisis since the end of the cold war.
In their first concrete response to Russia’s move to wrest the Black Sea peninsula from Ukraine, Washington and Brussels also warned of further sanctions, such as asset seizures, if Moscow does not relent in the stand-off. Continue reading
As Washington and the Europeans – and especially the UK – continue to decry Russian military aggression, the US and Russians have quietly entered into intense negotiations on a compromise for resolving their dispute over Ukraine, debkafile’s Washington and Moscow sources report.
Moscow insists on keeping in place the military forces which took control of Crimea over the weekend, but is ready to discuss terms for restraining the Russian army from advancing into the Russian-speaking eastern Ukraine. Continue reading
(Reuters) – Germany views Iran as a potential threat not just to Israel, but also to European countries, Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Tuesday at a joint news conference with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
The German chancellor visited Jerusalem with her cabinet to mark almost 50 years of bilateral ties with Israel, which was founded in part as a haven for survivors of the Holocaust.
“We see the threat not just as a threat for the state of Israel but as a general threat for Europe as well,” she said of a potential Iranian bomb, adding that Germany would pursue international talks with Tehran on its nuclear activities. Continue reading
German public opinion of Israel is slumping ahead of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s visit there. There is growing public and political disillusionment over Israel’s treatment of its Palestinian neighbors.
Merkel and her 15 cabinet ministers will participate in the largest-ever bilateral consultations on Monday and will kick off official preparations for next year’s celebrations commemorating 50 years since diplomatic relations between the two countries were established.
However, the visit has been overshadowed by reports of the worst crisis in diplomatic ties since Merkel took office almost 10 years ago. A recent BBC poll showed that only 14 percent of Germans today had a positive view of Israel.
“I think German public opinion is actually worse than what’s shown in the polls because Germans don’t publicly state their opinion, they play it down,” said Israel’s former ambassador to Germany and the European Union, Avi Primor. Continue reading
If you want the real deal on the Ukraine, here it is. Berlin is going all in. There are no such thing as sporatic uprisings where college kids empty the university classrooms to go out, demonstrate with wooden picket signs, or throw bottles and stones at police officers in riot gear. These are 99.9% of the time well thought out and methodically planned in advance, such as the Occupy Wall Street (see also here) thugs.
KIEV/BERLIN (Own report) – Yesterday, the day after the German Chancellor held deliberations with two leaders of the Ukrainian opposition, protests in Kiev escalated into bloody confrontations. Demonstrators, unconditionally sponsored by Germany and other western countries for months, began, over the past few days, to arm themselves with firearms and ammunition. Two police officers were shot to death during yesterday’s uprising. This escalation into a bloody confrontation followed on the heels of government compliance with a fundamental demand of the demonstrators, just as it seemed that a de-escalation was about to begin – to the tactical disadvantage of the “German’s man” in Kiev, Vitali Klitschko, who has been calling for the president to resign. Klitschko, who flew to Berlin Monday, to discuss the next steps, threatened an even more bloody escalation and declared, that he does not “rule out the use of force in the evacuation of the Maidan.” One of the organizations he is relying on is explicitly named after Nazi collaborators, who had carried out mass-murder of Soviet Jews. Escalation strategies, such as those currently implemented in Kiev, are not alien to German foreign policy. Continue reading
Germany is planning to possibly resume counter-espionage measures against several Western allies, according to a report in the news magazine Spiegel. The report said British and US embassies could be targeted.
Germany is debating plans to expand its counter-espionage personnel and conduct “foundational monitoring” of the embassies of such nations as the United States and Britain, Spiegel said in its report on Sunday. Continue reading
BERLIN (Reuters) – German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Saturday she would talk to French President Francois Hollande about building up a European communication network to avoid emails and other data passing through the United States.
Merkel said in her weekly podcast that she disapproved of companies such as Google and Facebook basing their operations in countries with low levels of data protection while being active in countries such as Germany with high data protection. Continue reading
America’s global retreat is pushing Germany to radically change its role in the world.
January 2014 was one of the most pivotal months in Germany’s post-war history. The nation’s top leaders lined up to proclaim a dramatic shift in foreign policy. Germany’s post-World War II period of restraint is over. Germany’s history, proclaimed its president, should no longer be an excuse for German inaction. The German military should act like any other: It should be prepared to get involved in foreign conflicts just like France, Britain and America.
(Reuters) – Germany is preparing to contribute troops to a European Union training mission in Mogadishu, less than a year after security concerns led Berlin to abandon a similar training operation when it relocated from Uganda to the Somali capital.
A foreign office spokesman said on Monday the decision to pull out had been taken by the previous government, but the situation in Somalia had since improved and Germany’s new government, a coalition of Angela Merkel’s conservatives and the Social Democrats (SPD), was considering joining. Continue reading
BERLIN/ANKARA (Own report) – The German government has sought to reach new agreements on strategies involving Syria and Ukraine in several meetings with the Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Turkey. Chancellor Merkel and Foreign Minster Steinmeier met with Prime Minister Erdoğan yesterday. Steinmeier had already received his counterpart Davutoğlu at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Monday. Because of rivalry with Moscow over influence on Kiev, one of the topics of discussion in Berlin is Ankara’s possible “financial contributions” to the Ukraine. Turkey is holding talks with Iran on the war in Syria, obviously designed to complement the “P5+1″ negotiations with Iran – which include Germany. Ankara is also intensifying its cooperation with the autonomous government of Kurdish Northern Iraq. Should Syria disintegrate, it could expedite the territorial reorganization of the region, particularly of the Kurdish speaking territories. To secure its influence on Turkey’s foreign policy, Berlin had initiated a “strategic dialogue” with Ankara last year, which should now be put to the test in relationship to the Ukraine and Syria. Continue reading
It won’t be like before the first two World Wars. First comes the political and economic unions of Europe after sovereign nations are subjugated via economic warfare (i.e. forced bailouts in exchange for sovereign rights), as further integration is always the solution to the problems according to Germany. Knowing the European Union would fail and exploiting the induced turmoil was part of the plan. It’s certainly heading for a breakup, but a remaining core of the ‘willing’ will bring a United State of Europe and its respective European Army under the Fourth Reich. It isn’t happening overnight, but a new chapter of world history is in the making.
Germany must stop using its past as a “shield” and use its armed forces more frequently and decisively, federal president Joachim Gauck has warned, in the clearest sign yet that country’s longstanding aversion to the use of its military may be beginning to crack.
“Germany can’t carry on as before,” Mr Gauck said on Friday, pulling few punches in a speech that cited German indifference and European navel-gazing amid “rapid” and “dramatic” new threats to the “open world order”.
“When the last resort – sending in the Bundeswehr – comes to be discussed, Germany should not say no on principle,” the president said. Continue reading
The Fourth Reich’s push for capturing Ukraine intensifies:
KIEV/BERLIN (Own report) – Following the escalation of the violent protests in Kiev, Berlin’s favorite, Vitaly Klitschko, is threatening to launch a new “offensive” against the government. The offensive would begin, Klitschko announced on Wednesday, should President Yanukovych not resign by yesterday evening. The deadline passed without resignation. Tensions are rising. German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier has “various contacts” within the Ukrainian opposition, explained Chancellor Merkel, mounting pressure on the Ukrainian government by demanding that the government protect “the freedom of expression and peaceful assembly.” Last weekend’s surge in violence – which preceded the brutal police repression – was sparked by ultra rightwing activists, who had been participating in the “Euromaidan” protests from the very beginning and who, according to observers, are winning growing acceptance. “Progressive activists” have to fight “on two fronts” in Kiev today: “against the regime that supports police violence” but also “against extremist nationalism.” Ultra rightwing leaders are already threatening civil war. Continue reading