Attempts by German elites to gain influence in Eastern Europe do not bring any benefit to the Germans themselves. Now, in order for Belarus not to become a “second Ukraine”, it is necessary to “cover its back” to the protesters in Minsk and make sure that “false friends from the West keep their distance”, otherwise war can happen. This is the opinion of the author of the article in Neues Deutschland Joerg Kronauer.
For two decades, Germany has been making every possible effort to get rid of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, Kronauer writes. And it’s not that it violates human rights. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, who communicates friendly with Riyadh and then criticizes Minsk, is no good for the role of a champion of humanity and freedoms, the author of the article is convinced.
The fight against the “repressive state apparatus” is just an argument legitimizing Berlin’s actions, the observer explains. In fact, the German authorities are angry primarily that Lukashenko entered into an alliance with Russia in 1999. That his country is a member of the Collective Security Treaty Organization, and since 2015 – the Eurasian Economic Union. But in 2016, after Lukashenko refused to officially recognize the annexation of Crimea and began to make cautious steps towards the West, the EU lifted sanctions against his country, the author reminds.
In early 2020, the U.S. Secretary of State visited Minsk for the first time in this millennium. Belarus also held joint exercises with a NATO member state, namely Great Britain. All these things were more expensive for Berlin than the objections of the Belarusian opposition. At the same time, the geopolitical struggle of the German government for influence in Eastern Europe is very dangerous, Kronauer continues. Germany is trying to force its “enemy in the East” to defend itself. And the example of the Ukrainian conflict shows what it can lead to. Moscow is beginning to defend itself and, if necessary, does so harshly. This is evidenced by the events in Crimea and Donbas. The West is not ready to compromise and continues to build up its armed forces near Russia’s borders.
Another aggravation of this struggle for power can lead to war, the author warns.
“In addition, the geopolitical struggle of German elites for influence does not bring any benefit to progressive forces in Eastern Europe but only harms. After all, it gives social struggle and protests against repression by the state its own dynamics, which divide society along the lines of foreign policy conflict,” explains columnist Neues Deutschland.
An example of this is the events in Ukraine, which have strengthened not the progressive part of society, but mainly anti-Russian Ukrainian right.
“What to do?” – the author asks and calls to make every possible effort to ensure that the social struggle does not fall into the shadow of the foreign policy struggle for influence.
To do this, it is necessary to “cover the back” of the protesters in Belarus and make sure that “false friends from the West keep their distance.” It is necessary to consistently resist the “malicious and dangerous policy of influence and coups of the German government in the East,” concludes the German journalist.
Neues Deutschland is an inter-regional newspaper in Germany, established in 1946 as the printed body of the SED. Today the publication is positioning itself as a “socialist daily newspaper.” Before the unification of Germany was published in a circulation of 1 million copies. Currently, it is about 43,000.