On the Road to Autonomy

BERLIN/WASHINGTON (Own report) – Recent media reports have, for the first time, disclosed US American interference in German business deals with recalcitrant countries. US authorities intervene directly, if German companies carry out financial transactions, for example, with Iran. Repeatedly, Washington has successfully blocked business deals – even though they had been legal in Germany – and had the respective employees and board members fired from their jobs, using the justification that (German) companies with sites in the USA are subject to US law. This also applies to bilateral US sanctions imposed, for example, on Iran. This means that Washington actually succeeds in transposing US domestic law onto other countries, including Germany. The most recent example: Washington is considering a veto on a Chinese company’s taking over Aixtron, a German chip equipment manufacturer. President Obama is expected to announce his decision today, Friday. These US-practices have been disclosed at a time of political transition, as Berlin is reinforcing its efforts to create an EU armed forces, to achieve “strategic autonomy” and become a world power. This arrogant US interference in the German-European economy is a taboo that cannot be tolerated on the road toward the long anticipated “superpower Europe.”

Germany in China-bashing mode over strategic takeovers

Sectors of the government in Berlin are calling bluntly for an intervention of the European Union (EU) to protect its members against unfair investment practices from Chinese state-owned and private companies. While both EU institutions and member states are sending mixed signals over this German proposal, hawkish supporters of Brexit – Britain’s exit from the EU – are pushing for their leaders to seize on the “China-bashing” that is taking place across the Channel.

Berlin fears that the rise in China’s takeovers of German national assets, notably in the dual-use (i.e. civil and military) hi-tech industry, is driven in large part by the Chinese undisguised desire to buy up Western know-how and intellectual properties, something that will negatively affect the country’s security. Continue reading