How Trump pushed Germany away from the USA towards Russia again
In any political, and especially allied relations, there is a place not only for general strategic plans, but also the concept of a certain critical mass, which, with its accumulation even without loud words about a break, secretly makes friendships impossible. Now a similar period is the US-German relations, which finally got entangled and complicated.
In the Old World, it is still generally accepted that an ally is one who acts together with you, taking into account your interests. This position would be fair if there was no concept in the world about American interests, which in the USA are considered dominant over the interests of other countries. And while the modern world is increasingly moving towards multipolarity, Washington is still trying to cling to the myth of its own exclusiveness. This is done in the Middle East, and in Europe, and in Asia.
Iran is officially declared by Washington the Number One Threat in the Middle East. This means that the rest of the world, and especially NATO allies, must do the same. However, we remember that Europe, which has made a lot of effort to conclude a deal of the “six” international mediators on the Iranian nuclear program, does not agree with this. For the United States, the confrontation with Iran is a great chance to raise its banner in the long-standing internal Arab conflict and to lead the demarche of the Sunni Gulf states against Shiite Iran. And thus obtain the key to the Middle East.
That is why Donald Trump broke the agreement on Iran, despite the fact that the IAEA experts have not found signs of its violation by Tehran. In the US, this act of Trump is attributed to the fact that Barack Obama made a deal with Iran, and his successor literally broke all the treaties in order to renew them again on more favorable terms.
In Europe, this behavior is interpreted as a refusal by the United States of allied obligations. There is the accumulation of the critical mass, which will soon finally convince the Europeans that they can no longer rely on Washington. And the first such opinion begins to voice Germany.
One of the main news stories in the world of international politics on May 8 is the unannounced visit of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Iraq. By itself, such a visit, against the background of a sharp increase in Washington’s rhetoric against Iran, is not surprising. It was surprising that on the evening of May 7, Pompeo was expected in Berlin, where everything was ready for his meeting with Chancellor Angela Merkel and German colleague Heiko Maas. But the leaders of the current European policy did not wait for the head of the State Department, because that evening he suddenly materialized for everyone in Baghdad.
Pompeo held talks with the authorities of Iraq and told them about the need to fight with Iran on the side of the United States. The Secretary of State talked about this a lot with pomp at a press conference where he promised the Iraqis American protection against all sorts of terrorist threats and against the plotting that was undoubtedly being prepared somewhere in the Tehran cabinets.
It should be noted and three more very important facts. The first is that Pompeo’s visit to Iraq was followed immediately after the United States announced the dispatch of an assault group led by the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln to the shores of Iran. The group also has a bomber wing - formidable B-52s capable of carrying nuclear weapons.
The second fact is the information leaked to the media that this American strike group was sent to Iran, in fact, by Israel. Intelligence about allegedly preparing Iranian provocations in the Persian Gulf the CIA handed over to the Mossad, after which adviser to the US president on national security John Bolton issued a statement and announced a new anti-Iranian mission. It is no secret that Israel has far from the most tender feelings towards Iran, which explains the American-Israeli tandem in the region.
The third fact is intended to justify the first two. CNN television channel, citing sources in the State Department, said that US intelligence has reliable information on Iran’s actions.
The Pentagon is not entirely satisfied with the composition of the Abraham Lincoln strike group and intends to send additional military forces closer to Iran.
And now, attention, the question is: where is the whole interest of Europe in this? The correct answer is nowhere. So they judged in Germany, where they completely misunderstood how it was possible to cancel the meeting with head of state Angela Merkel in order to wave imaginary fists in Iraq.
End of friendship
The reaction in Germany was not long in coming. And although neither Merkel nor Meuse made any statements on this issue, the German media said everything for them very precisely.
In the world of diplomacy there is rudeness. This, for example, refusal to participate in important international meetings as the Minister of Foreign Affairs or too long negotiations during the first visit to the partners. And there is arrogance. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo canceled a trip to Berlin a few hours before meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and talking with his German counterpart Heiko Maas. It's hard to justify
- wrote the German Suddeutsche Zeitung.
The article is generally a mass of cones to the United States and Trump. Arguments in this material are simply irresistible and give the impression of clearly adjusted. This is another proof of the fact that the newspaper simply writes about what they are seriously talking about both in society and in the German political establishment. One of the arguments is Donald Trump personally. He pursues not a “smart”, but a “power” policy, which is based on the dominance of US interests over the interests of their allies. What does it mean?
“Europeans, especially Germans, are experiencing this in a dispute about tariffs (with the United States — approx. Constantinople). Complex international contracts mean little to Trump, his passion is a tough deal. In many cases, the United States is no longer allies, but opponents, against which it is necessary to create alliances. This is the case with the Paris Climate Agreement, and above all with the nuclear agreement on Iran, ”the newspaper said.
In principle, this is already enough. Trump withdrew from the Paris Climate Agreement, lowering the status of this treaty and allowing Europeans and Russia to figure out for themselves what and where they will cut in terms of emissions. Trump punishes Europe with duties on steel and aluminum, which is why German business suffers in many ways. The US also demands that Germany and Europe comply with the regime of sanctions against Russia, whereas these sanctions are already immensely fed up with the Europeans themselves.
Trump is demanding that Germany increase its payments to the treasury of NATO to 2% of GDP, but Berlin has already openly sabotaged this requirement. The US president also demanded that Germany abandon the Nord Stream-2 gas pipeline project with Russia, but Merkel was not afraid to publicly state that this would not happen. The German economy is switching from coal and the atom to natural gas, this process is already irreversible, and the German Chancellor is not the enemy of his country, to force it with increased prices for the American "blue fuel", abandoning reliable and profitable Russian pipeline gas.
Finally, German companies ignore the US ban on deals with Iran. Germany condemned Trump for the groundless breaking of the agreement with Tehran and in many respects did not support the new sanctions regime against Iran. And suddenly there is a situation that could be the last straw - Pompeo is waiting in Berlin, and he is going to Iraq to voice there what Germany officially disagrees with.
Is this a turn towards Russia?
This question is now increasingly can be found in Germany and in Russia. The fact is that the new stage of economic relations for Moscow and Berlin opens not only the Nord Stream - 2. Russia also does not support the rhetoric of the United States on Iran, and with this they are united in Germany. German business is making a lot of effort to bypass the US sanctions and develop cooperation with Russia. Because it is profitable.
In April, the Russian-German Chamber of Commerce published a report that in 2018 German companies, despite the sanctions, invested 3.2 billion euros in Russia. This was a record in the last 10 years.
Along with such large-scale projects as the Nord Stream - 2, the German small and medium business opens up the possibilities of the Russian market,
- said in this regard, the head of the House of Matthias Schepp.
According to him, German companies that know the Russian market well are not afraid of sanctions and pressure from the United States. Of course, the Nord Stream 2 project played the largest role in the growth of investments. It is realized mainly on Russian and German money, and the pipe itself has a powerful political “roof”.
The German auto industry is not idle. Since 2014, the Volkswagen automaker’s investments have already reached more than 500 million euros. These funds went to the concern's factories in Kaluga and Nizhny Novgorod. In April, Vladimir Putin and German Economy Minister Peter Altmeier inaugurated Daimler's Mercedes-Benz production plant in Russia.
All this is happening against the background of the growth in commodity circulation between the two countries. It grew by 8.4% and reached 61.9 billion euros. German enterprises increased their shipments to Russia by 14.7% to 36 billion euros. Russia increased shipments by 0.6% to 25.9 billion euros.
The conclusion of all this suggests only one. The turn of Germany is already underway, but it is happening and will continue further in the economic plane. Probably, we will not hear loud statements from Merkel, Meuse or even the Bundestag deputies about the beginning of a great friendship with Russia. In the current Europe-dependent Europe, such sentiments are not held in high esteem, and the European leader, Germany, must demonstrate solidarity within the EU.
However, the point is that economic projects, investments, commodity circulation, as well as the rare, but nevertheless coincidence of political views, is an asset of relations between Russia and Germany, which is booming.