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Germany Considering Use of Force in Greece (Surprise, Surprise)

COMMENT: It strikes us as less than remark­able that the Ger­man pol­i­cy elite are now open­ly debat­ing the use of mil­i­tary force to “pre­vent” the rever­sion of that coun­try to dic­ta­tor­ship!

The vital­ly impor­tant german-foreign-policy.com informs us that the mil­i­tary inter­ven­tion sce­nario is being debat­ed by the Frank­furter All­ge­meine Zeitung, Ger­many’s most pres­ti­gious dai­ly news­pa­per, and Daniel Cohn-Ben­dit, a “left­ist” vet­er­an of the Euro­pean New Left of the 1960’s.

We are now in a posi­tion to view what the elder George Bush might refer to as “a kinder, gen­tler” Reich–one imposed in order to “pre­vent” dic­ta­tor­ship and chaos, fol­low­ing the eco­nom­ic impo­si­tion of mea­sures insur­ing that chaos will inevitably occur.

The calls for mil­i­tary inter­ven­tion will come from main­stream, even lib­er­al, insti­tu­tions and so-called “pro­gres­sives.”

Greeks protest­ing the EMU

Grotesque­ly iron­ic, this debate fol­lows on:

“On the Rel­e­vance of Democ­ra­cy”; german-foreign-policy.com; 5/21/2012.

EXCERPT: . . . The sec­tors of the Ger­man elite, which refuse to con­sid­er this change of course pro­posed by Krug­man and numer­ous oth­er experts out­side Germany,[7] are now pub­licly debat­ing sce­nar­ios involv­ing the use of force. In a news­pa­per inter­view ear­ly this month, the direc­tor of the promi­nent Ham­burg Insti­tute of Inter­na­tion­al Eco­nom­ics, Thomas Straub­haar, called for estab­lish­ing a pro­tec­torate in Greece — “regard­less of the out­come of the elec­tions.” The coun­try is a “failed state,” he says, which is unable to raise itself “to a new start” under “its own steam.”[8] Athens needs “help in estab­lish­ing viable state struc­tures.” It, there­fore, must be trans­formed into “a Euro­pean pro­tec­torate.” “The EU must do it,” affirms Straub­haar. The EU “would have to help Greece mod­ern­ize its insti­tu­tions at every lev­el, par­tic­u­lar­ly with admin­is­tra­tive staff, tax experts, and tax inspec­tors.” How­ev­er, refound­ing Greece would demand “intu­ition” to “over­come nation­al pride, con­ceit, and the resis­tance of inter­est groups.” This is refer­ring to a sov­er­eign democ­ra­cy, a Ger­man ally in the EU and NATO.

Putsch

In the mean­time, there is even dis­cus­sion of a putsch in Athens. Greece threat­ens to sink into com­plete chaos, warned a long time com­pan­ion of Ger­many’s for­mer For­eign Min­is­ter, Joseph Fis­ch­er, Daniel Cohn-Ben­dit, a Euro­pean par­lia­men­tar­i­an for the French Green Par­ty. Cohn-Ben­dit explained that it is impos­si­ble to avoid exten­sive for­eign inter­fer­ence. “If you leave the Greeks to mud­dle through alone, you are risk­ing a mil­i­tary putsch.”[9] Ger­man com­men­ta­tors are draw­ing com­par­isons to the sit­u­a­tion in the lat­er stages of Ger­many’s Weimar Repub­lic. “In the Greek sit­u­a­tion, the worst case would be a rever­sion to a dic­ta­tor­ship,” warned an influ­en­tial com­men­ta­tor. “This sce­nario becomes more prob­a­ble as insta­bil­i­ty grows.” In ref­er­ence to the links between a pos­si­ble dic­ta­tor­ship and Berlin’s aus­ter­i­ty dic­tate, the com­men­ta­tor writes, “already today, it seems as though Merkel’s aus­ter­i­ty pol­i­cy can, at best, be imposed on the streets of Athens by force of arms.”[10]

Pro­tec­tion Forces

Last week, a lead­ing Ger­man dai­ly dis­cussed the issue of dis­patch­ing troops to Greece. Should the coun­try go bank­rupt, it would then, as a “ ‘fail­ing state,’ (...) be less in a posi­tion” to shore up its bor­ders against migrants, writes the Frank­furter All­ge­meine Zeitung. Just recent­ly, the EU Com­mis­sion announced that it finds itself forced to pro­long the mis­sion of its EU bor­der troops at the Greek/Turkish bor­ders. If Athens “should no longer be able to pay its offi­cials, or can pay only in Drach­mas,” the sit­u­a­tion risks “chaotic.”[11] The coun­try could pos­si­bly “be rocked by rebel­lions.” “Help for Greece would then no longer be on cred­it, but be trans­formed into a sort of human­i­tar­i­an emer­gency aid,” proph­e­sied the jour­nal in its front-page lead edi­to­r­i­al. “Hope­ful­ly, an inter­na­tion­al pro­tec­tion force, such as is sta­tioned in the tee­ter­ing coun­tries fur­ther to the north, will not become an option.”[12]

Discussion

9 comments for “Germany Considering Use of Force in Greece (Surprise, Surprise)”

  1. Ger­many will undoubt­ed­ly ‘invade’ and or take con­trol of var­i­ous euro­pean states. But I sus­pect not open­ly as the Bun­deswehr; they will do it as a blue-uni­formed ‘Euro Task Force’.

    Uber Alles.

    Posted by GW | May 28, 2012, 6:59 am
  2. I am remind­ed of the song “Liv­ing In The Past” …

    Once I used to join in
    every boy and girl was my friend.

    Now there’s rev­o­lu­tion,
    but they don’t know what they’re fight­ing.

    Let us close out eyes;
    out­side their lives go on much faster.

    Oh, we won’t give in,
    we’ll keep liv­ing in the past.

    It’s not Ger­many, it’s the right wing, and it’s not even the right wing … the only way it can sur­vive is by being invis­i­ble.

    Posted by brux | May 29, 2012, 9:01 pm
  3. Great...so now it sounds like the Greek bailout, itself, is being man­aged by the ‘troi­ka’ in such a way that it almost does­n’t mat­ter how bad Greece’s econ­o­my gets it can’t default. And why is that? Because the troi­ka is only lend­ing Greece enough mon­ey to pay inter­est on it’s debts. THAT’S the bailout and even funds intend­ed to keep the gov­ern­ment run­ning are being with­held. Why? Because help­ing more would remove the nec­es­sary pres­sure for tax-col­lec­tion reforms.on the nation. So the econon­my is being inten­tion­al­ly gut­ted pres­sured in order to achieve the goal of rais­ing more tax­es. In oth­er words, the troi­ka is using a tech­nique that destroys Greece’s econ­o­my (to raise tax­es!?) because that tech­nique pre­vents a tech­ni­cal Greek dafault. In oth­er oth­er words, the EU had bet­ter start prepar­ing those ‘peace keep­ing’ forces because it sounds like no mat­ter how bad it gets this roller coast­er ride is going to go on for a long time:

    NY Times
    Most Aid to Athens Cir­cles Back to Europe
    By LIZ ALDERMAN and JACK EWING
    Pub­lished: May 29, 2012

    PARIS — Its mem­ber­ship in the euro cur­ren­cy union hang­ing in the bal­ance, Greece con­tin­ues to receive bil­lions of euros in emer­gency assis­tance from a so-called troi­ka of lenders over­see­ing its bailout.

    But almost none of the mon­ey is going to the Greek gov­ern­ment to pay for vital pub­lic ser­vices. Instead, it is flow­ing direct­ly back into the troika’s pock­ets.

    The Euro­pean bailout of 130 bil­lion euros ($163.4 bil­lion) that was sup­posed to buy time for Greece is main­ly ser­vic­ing only the inter­est on the country’s debt — while the Greek econ­o­my con­tin­ues to strug­gle.

    If that seems to make lit­tle sense eco­nom­i­cal­ly, it has a cer­tain log­ic in the pol­i­tics of euro-finance. After all, the mon­ey dis­pensed by the troi­ka — the Euro­pean Cen­tral Bank, the Inter­na­tion­al Mon­e­tary Fund and the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion — comes from Euro­pean tax­pay­ers, many of whom are increas­ing­ly wary of the polit­i­cal dis­ar­ray that has afflict­ed Athens and cloud­ed the future of the euro zone.

    As they pay them­selves, though, the troi­ka mem­bers are also with­hold­ing oth­er funds intend­ed to keep the Greek gov­ern­ment in oper­a­tion.

    Last week, the Athens office that tracks rev­enue said Greece could run out of mon­ey by July. If so, Greece could default on its debts — except those due to the cen­tral bank, the mon­e­tary fund and the Euro­pean Union.

    “Greece will not default on the troi­ka because the troi­ka is pay­ing them­selves,” said Thomas May­er, a senior advis­er at Deutsche Bank in Frank­furt.

    In an elab­o­rate pay­ment sys­tem that began after the May 6 elec­tion that brought down the Greek gov­ern­ment and is meant to ensure that the Greeks do not touch the cash, the big three cred­i­tors are now wiring bailout pay­ments to an escrow account in Greece. There the mon­ey sits for two or three days — before much of it is sent back to the troi­ka as inter­est pay­ments on the Greek bonds that Europe accept­ed under terms of the bailout deal struck in Feb­ru­ary.

    ...

    Some peo­ple close to the sit­u­a­tion say the troi­ka is also try­ing to put finan­cial pres­sure on Greece to do what it can to col­lect tax rev­enue from an increas­ing­ly dev­as­tat­ed econ­o­my.

    The man­ag­ing direc­tor of the I.M.F., Chris­tine Lagarde, prompt­ed a furor in Greece over the week­end when she chas­tised Greeks for not pay­ing tax­es, in an inter­view with The Guardian.

    A Greek gov­ern­ment advis­er who spoke on the con­di­tion of anonymi­ty, for fear of alien­at­ing the Euro­pean lenders, said of the troi­ka: “They made sure that the sum for domes­tic spend­ing is kept small enough to force Greece to dra­mat­i­cal­ly raise its own rev­enues.”

    On its face, the sit­u­a­tion seems absurd. The Euro­pean author­i­ties are effec­tive­ly lend­ing Greece mon­ey so Greece can repay the mon­ey it bor­rowed from them.

    “You send the mon­ey, you call it a ‘loan’ — you get it back and call it an ‘inter­est rate,’ ” said Stephane Deo, glob­al head of asset allo­ca­tion in Lon­don for UBS. Mr. Deo said such arrange­ments were com­mon in sit­u­a­tions where gov­ern­ments were in dan­ger of default­ing on their debts.

    ...

    Only a third has been ear­marked to finance gov­ern­ment oper­a­tions, with only a tiny sliv­er spent on stim­u­lus projects for the ane­mic econ­o­my.

    ...

    The Euro­pean Cen­tral Bank became one of Greece’s biggest cred­i­tors after it start­ed buy­ing debt from trou­bled euro zone coun­tries in 2010 to help sta­bi­lize prices. The bank does not dis­close how much Greek debt it bought, but esti­mates are from $44 bil­lion to $69 bil­lion.

    Greek bonds are a prof­itable invest­ment for the bank as long as Greece con­tin­ues to make inter­est pay­ments. The bank exempt­ed itself from the debt restruc­tur­ing deal. And Greek bonds were already trad­ing at a big dis­count when the cen­tral bank start­ed buy­ing them. As a result, the bank is earn­ing an effec­tive inter­est rate of 10 per­cent or so, Mr. Deo esti­mat­ed.

    ...

    How­ev­er harsh the pay­back terms might seem, the Euro­pean author­i­ties have a strong inter­est in avoid­ing the even high­er costs that would result if Greece left the euro zone or default­ed com­plete­ly on its debt.

    As ear­ly as next year, accord­ing to opti­mistic esti­mates, Greece could reach the point where tax receipts exceed gov­ern­ment oper­at­ing expens­es.

    ...

    So the opti­mists think this ride might be done in a year? Well, at least this all sounds like its high­ly prof­itable for the troi­ka. They might need the cash.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | May 29, 2012, 9:26 pm
  4. Since the world is offer­ing Greece advice, here’s some more:
    Ignore the first guy:

    Michael Casey’s FX Hori­zons
    May 30, 2012, 10:41 a.m. EDT
    Argen­tines offer Greeks tough advice on cri­sis
    Com­men­tary: Lead­ers must look beyond short-term pol­i­tics

    By Michael Casey

    NEW YORK (Mar­ket­Watch) — With a Greek exit from the euro zone now wide­ly seen as a fore­gone con­clu­sion, it is worth reflect­ing on the fol­low­ing:

    ...

    I asked the two Argen­tine pol­i­cy mak­ers most direct­ly involved in try­ing to save Argenti­na from that out­come to reflect on those moments and offer advice to the Greeks. Strik­ing­ly, their pre­scrip­tions dif­fered, which seemed to cor­re­spond with the extent to which each was polit­i­cal­ly invest­ed in pro­tect­ing the con­vert­ibil­i­ty plan 10 years ago.

    “To me it is a bar­bar­i­ty that many are rec­om­mend­ing a euro exit,” said Domin­go Cav­al­lo, who was the econ­o­my min­is­ter until Pres­i­dent Fer­nan­do de la Rua’s down­fall on Dec. 21, 2001. “The more they rec­om­mend it, the more it will aggra­vate Greece’s cri­sis.” Greece, he said, should hang on to the euro because leav­ing it will only invite hyper­in­fla­tion and turn the coun­try into the “pari­ah of Europe,” much as Argenti­na was turned into an inter­na­tion­al rogue by its actions.

    Cav­al­lo was known as the father of the con­vert­ibil­i­ty plan, hav­ing intro­duced the dol­lar peg dur­ing his first min­is­te­r­i­al stint in 1991, which imme­di­ate­ly end­ed a hyper­in­fla­tion night­mare. Ten years lat­er, De la Rua brought him back to try to save the sys­tem. His entire rep­u­ta­tion was invest­ed in doing so. Now teach­ing at Yale, he has con­tin­ued to reject the con­ven­tion­al wis­dom that the peg had to go. In his mind, its end reflect­ed “a fail­ure of lead­er­ship.”

    But how should the gov­ern­ment have con­tend­ed with society’s fierce resis­tance to aus­ter­i­ty, I asked. Cavallo’s response: “That’s what it means to gov­ern. You must make tough deci­sions.” Sim­i­lar­ly, he said, the IMF and Argentina’s cred­i­tors lacked lead­er­ship in not rec­og­niz­ing the inter­na­tion­al ram­i­fi­ca­tions of their actions. By pulling the plug on Argenti­na, Cav­al­lo said, they fanned the flames of anti-mar­ket, anti‑U.S. sen­ti­ment across Latin Amer­i­ca, which brought Hugo Chavez to pow­er in Venezuela and led to the fail­ure of the Wash­ing­ton-backed Free Trade Area of the Amer­i­c­as. It should be a warn­ing to Ger­many, he said.

    The approach of Daniel Marx, who was finance sec­re­tary under Cav­al­lo until he abrupt­ly resigned on Dec. 15, 2001, is a dif­fer­ent one. He said the most impor­tant steps were to “build polit­i­cal con­sen­sus” with­in Greek soci­ety and estab­lish poli­cies that “dis­trib­ute loss­es fair­ly” and pro­tect “the social fab­ric,” includ­ing a deval­u­a­tion if need be.

    ...

    Yes Greece, you real­ly want to avoid going down that path. It ain’t pret­ty:

    NY Times
    Paul Krug­man
    May 3, 2012, 12:09 pm
    Down Argenti­na Way

    Matt Ygle­sias, who just spent time in Argenti­na, writes about the lessons of that country’s recov­ery fol­low­ing its exit from the one-peso-one-dol­lar “con­vert­ibil­i­ty law”. As he says, it’s a remark­able suc­cess sto­ry, one that arguably holds lessons for the euro zone.

    I’d just add some­thing else: press cov­er­age of Argenti­na is anoth­er one of those exam­ples of how con­ven­tion­al wis­dom can appar­ent­ly make it impos­si­ble to get basic facts right. We keep get­ting sto­ries about Ireland’s recov­ery when there is, in fact, no recov­ery — but there should be, darn it, because they’ve done the “right” thing, so that’s what we’ll report.

    ...

    Yep, if Greece goes down that path it’ll get down­right ugly.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | May 30, 2012, 12:07 pm
  5. Giv­en all the fun changes we’ve seen in the euro­zone and EU just in the last cou­ple of years, you have to won­der what an EU that’s “a real actor on the glob­al scene” is going to look like:

    EU heavy­weights call for rad­i­cal for­eign and defence pol­i­cy over­haul

    Five of six biggest EU coun­tries back plans which include pan-Euro­pean for­eign min­istry and major­i­ty vot­ing to bypass UK veto

    Ian Traynor in Brus­sels
    guardian.co.uk, Tues­day 18 Sep­tem­ber 2012 12.09 EDT

    Five of the six biggest coun­tries in the EU, exclud­ing Britain, have called for a rad­i­cal over­haul of Euro­pean for­eign and defence poli­cies to cre­ate a pow­er­ful new pan-Euro­pean for­eign min­istry, major­i­ty vot­ing on com­mon for­eign poli­cies to bypass a British veto, a pos­si­ble Euro­pean army, and a sin­gle mar­ket for EU defence indus­tries.

    The Ger­man-led push, sup­port­ed by 11 of 27 EU coun­tries, embraces recent calls in Berlin and Brus­sels for a direct­ly elect­ed Euro­pean pres­i­dent, sweep­ing new pow­ers for the Euro­pean par­lia­ment, and fur­ther split­ting of the EU by cre­at­ing a new par­lia­men­tary sub-cham­ber for the 17 coun­tries of the euro­zone.

    While the call for a Euro­pean army was not sup­port­ed by all 11, the doc­u­ment also calls for a new Euro­pean police organ­i­sa­tion to guard the union’s exter­nal bor­ders and for a sin­gle Euro­pean visa.

    Nine months of brain­storm­ing over the future of Europe by the for­eign min­is­ters of the 11 coun­tries, launched by Gui­do West­er­welle, the Ger­man for­eign min­is­ter, has result­ed in a 12-page doc­u­ment crammed with pol­i­cy rec­om­men­da­tions. It will prove huge­ly con­tentious and, if imple­ment­ed, will increase the pres­sure on Britain to quit the EU.

    “To make the EU into a real actor on the glob­al scene we believe that we should in the long term intro­duce more major­i­ty deci­sions in the com­mon for­eign and secu­ri­ty pol­i­cy sphere, or at least pre­vent one sin­gle mem­ber state from being able to obstruct ini­tia­tives,” the doc­u­ment said.

    “Aim for a Euro­pean defence pol­i­cy with joint efforts regard­ing the defence indus­try (eg the cre­ation of a sin­gle mar­ket for arma­ment projects); for some mem­bers of the group this could even­tu­al­ly involve a Euro­pean army.”

    The back­ers include Ger­many, France, Italy, Spain and Poland, five of the six biggest EU coun­tries omit­ting Britain. The Nether­lands, Bel­gium, Den­mark, Aus­tria, Por­tu­gal and Lux­em­bourg also signed up.

    The rec­om­men­da­tions include more incen­di­ary steps, includ­ing a pro­pos­al to re-open and change Euro­pean treaties by major­i­ty vot­ing because get­ting con­sen­sus in a union of 27 or 28 has become too slow, acri­mo­nious and unwieldy.
    ...

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | September 25, 2012, 11:06 am
  6. Had a lit­tle trou­ble find­ing the right cat­e­go­ry for this, but it’s impor­tant.

    From NPR

    http://www.npr.org/2013/02/25/172858159/germany-called-on-to-evolve-its-gobal-military-role

    Ger­many Eval­u­ates Its Glob­al Mil­i­tary Role
    by Soraya Sarhad­di Nel­son
    Feb­ru­ary 25, 2013

    (Excerpts, full text at link)

    “For decades after the dev­as­ta­tion of World War Two, Ger­many recoiled from any prospect of mil­i­tary engage­ment. Now the coun­try is under pres­sure to get involved in for­eign mil­i­tary con­flicts as the U.S. cuts back its role as the world’s police­man. Ger­many’s grow­ing mil­i­tary role is now being debat­ed in gov­ern­ment and aca­d­e­m­ic cir­cles.
    (snip)
    SORAYA SARHADDI NELSON, BYLINE: Ger­man Defense Min­is­ter Thomas de Maiziere wants his coun­try­men to talk about the evolv­ing role of the Ger­man mil­i­tary. The min­is­ter tells NPR that in Europe, Ger­many is sec­ond only to Britain in troop deploy­ments, but that few here like to think about that.
    THOMAS DE MAIZIERE: (Through trans­la­tor) In Ger­many, the mil­i­tary’s oper­a­tional con­cept was not to go on mis­sions. Things have changed since reuni­fi­ca­tion, but many Ger­mans like to live in the past and haven’t inter­nal­ized their coun­try’s impor­tance.
    (snip)
    NELSON: He and oth­er Ger­man ana­lysts say that the gov­ern­ment is under grow­ing inter­na­tion­al pres­sure to get involved mil­i­tar­i­ly in for­eign con­flicts, espe­cial­ly as Amer­i­ca cuts back on its role as the world’s police­man. They say being a polit­i­cal pow­er­house in the Euro­pean Union and serv­ing as pay­mas­ter in the euro-cri­sis is no longer enough.
    (snip)
    Some here accuse Chan­cel­lor Angela Merkel’s gov­ern­ment of sell­ing arms rather than send­ing in Ger­man troops to address secu­ri­ty con­cerns. A Decem­ber cov­er sto­ry in Der Spiegel mag­a­zine out­lined a Merkel doc­trine, in which key coun­tries in unsta­ble areas were being sold high-tech Ger­man weapons so they could main­tain secu­ri­ty on their own.
    That wor­ries Edel­gard Bul­mahn, an oppo­si­tion law­mak­er with the Social Democ­rats, who serves on the Bun­destag for­eign affairs com­mit­tee.
    EDELGARD BULMAHN: We always real­ized that mil­i­tary approach does­n’t real­ly solve the con­flict. But nev­er­the­less, arms exports can’t be a sub­sti­tute for a role of our coun­try.
    (snip)
    NELSON: Bul­mahn and oth­er law­mak­ers took part in a con­tentious Bun­destag debate in late Jan­u­ary about the lack of trans­paren­cy in arms exports. Ger­many is the third biggest exporter of arms world­wide, although it trails far behind the U.S. and Rus­sia.
    Olaf Simon­sen, a retired vice pres­i­dent of the Ger­man Office of Eco­nom­ics and Exports, says secret deals are only part of the prob­lem. He charges that changes to Euro­pean trade laws are giv­ing the Ger­man gov­ern­ment greater free­dom to sell arms to more Third World coun­tries, even if it does­n’t have a license for those coun­tries.
    OLAF SIMONSEN: For exam­ple, if France has no prob­lems to deliv­er items to a for­mer colony in Africa, it’s now allowed for the Ger­man exporter to trans­fer an item from Ger­many to France. And then France can export trans­fer the final prod­uct to this coun­try.”

    More at Link

    Posted by Swamp | February 26, 2013, 9:00 am
  7. @SWAMP–Quite pre­dictable, unfor­tu­nate­ly.

    The fal­la­cious pre­sump­tion is that Ger­many has changed.

    Wrong!

    Aside from the fact that the Ger­man army was re-staffed with Nazis after WWII, there is every rea­son to sup­pose that the insti­tu­tion­al iner­tia in the Bun­deswehr has con­tin­ued.

    In FTR #595, we not­ed that con­tem­po­rary Bun­deswehr recruits are being trained with live-fire prac­tice on sim­u­lat­ed African-Amer­i­cans!!

    In FTR #50, we not­ed that the head of the Bundeswehr–Klaus Naumann–told his offi­cers that the task fac­ing Ger­many was to roll back “the val­ues of 1945” i.e. denaz­i­fi­ca­tion.

    He also said that it was also their duty to roll back the val­ues of “lib­erte, equalite et fraternite”–the val­ues of the French rev­o­lu­tion and the enlight­en­ment!

    In FTR #86, we not­ed that con­vict­ed neo-Nazi ter­ror bomber Man­fred Roed­er was select­ed to lec­ture at the Ger­man mil­i­tary acad­e­my! The Bun­deswehr also donat­ed sur­plus vehi­cles to Roed­er’s orga­ni­za­tion!

    Stay tuned!

    Dave Emory

    Posted by Dave Emory | February 26, 2013, 5:04 pm
  8. Agreed.
    Sub­mit­ted “For the record”, so to speak...

    From the above report:

    ” ..but many Ger­mans like to live in the past and haven’t inter­nal­ized their country’s impor­tance.”

    And the aggres­sion begins here:

    “NELSON: He and oth­er Ger­man ana­lysts say that the gov­ern­ment is under grow­ing inter­na­tional pres­sure to get involved mil­i­tar­ily in for­eign con­flicts, espe­cially as Amer­ica cuts back on its role as the world’s police­man. They say being a polit­i­cal pow­er­house in the Euro­pean Union and serv­ing as pay­mas­ter in the euro-cri­sis is no longer enough.”

    Posted by Swamp | February 26, 2013, 6:55 pm
  9. @SWAMP–BTW, Ger­man defense min­is­ter Thomas de Maiziere is the son of Ulrich de Maiziere, a for­mer Inspec­tor Gen­er­al of the Bun­deswehr (equiv­a­lent to the Chair­man of the Joint Chiefs of Staff) and WWII gen­er­al under Hitler.

    The elder de Maiziere was an aide to Gen­er­al Adolf Heusinger, who planned every Nazi mil­i­tary cam­paign after 1940, includ­ing Oper­a­tion Bar­barossa, the geno­ci­dal inva­sion of the Sovi­et Union.

    Heusinger was the first Inspec­tor Gen­er­al of the “new” Bun­deswehr.

    Best,

    Dave Emory

    Posted by Dave Emory | February 27, 2013, 12:25 pm

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