Written by – Elijah J. Magnier:
At the beginning of the Russian-US war on Ukrainian soil, all the signs were that the United States of America would be the biggest winner. It was able to gather Eastern and Western Europe under its mantle, bring NATO back to life and force Russia into a long and exhausting battle in the hope of breaking its will and economy. For the US, it didn’t lose a single soldier and enjoyed seeing how Ukraine was willing to sacrifice hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians to keep “America first” and protect its dominance and world hegemony. The West was preparing to absorb the battle results and collect Russia’s natural resources, thinking victory was approaching. However, the situation has turned around and taken a different direction than the West expected and liked. Not only has Russia’s steadfastness reshuffled the cards, but the US has retained control of an alliance that has lost its will and is internally fragile and weaker than ever. It is a narrow result.
Europe is no longer as strong and independent as before the continental war between Russia and America in Ukraine. Neutral Finland joined NATO to extend the anti-Russian western front for thousands of kilometres on its western borders and become the 31st country to join the US-led military organisation. This has led to the return of the arms race, as evidenced by Russia’s decision to deploy nuclear missile forces in Belarus, which has challenged the West as a whole. An estimated 100 US nuclear weapons are stored at six bases in five NATO member states: Kleine Brogel in Belgium, Büchel air base in Germany, Aviano and Ghedi air bases in Italy, Volkel air base in the Netherlands and Incirlik in Turkey.
Western Europe – most Eastern European countries, except for Hungary, have long been under US domination – has lost its neutrality and strength and is no longer making decisions that are in the interests of its people and economy. This has significantly weakened it in the eyes of the US and the rest of the world. But the West is now in a very different position than before the Ukraine war.
Germany has announced that it has begun building an advanced army and arms industry to fight modern wars. Two hundred billion euros has been earmarked for this move as a step towards European armament. It has enjoyed a golden age since the Second World War, interrupted by the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina in the 1990s. However, it did not change European politics as the current ongoing war in Ukraine.
Chancellor Olaf Scholz has been announcing contradictory decisions since February last year, showing the weakness of his leadership and its inability to stand up to US influence. At the beginning of the war, the German Chancellor announced that his country could not do without Russian energy sources and that the relationship with Russia was essential and balanced. He also said he would not supply Ukraine with arms or Leopard 2 tanks.
However, his concessions began to show when the White House – and not Berlin – decided to shut down the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which was later sabotaged, without any objections. Later, Berlin did not demand that all countries investing in Nord Stream 2 be included in the investigation to avoid what some European officials called an “uncomfortable reality”. At the insistence of the US, Germany has agreed to send its tanks – far from changing the course of the fierce battle in Ukraine – despite its previous refusal. Instead, Germany’s support for Ukraine, like the bombing of the Nord Stream pipeline, is aimed at cutting the bridges of return between Russia and Europe so that the US can be the sole judge of the rules of engagement, war and peace in Europe.
Former German Chancellor Angela Merkel has had various interactions and engagements throughout her political career with the United States and its foreign policy. While Merkel has generally maintained good relations with the US, there have been instances where she has been critical of US foreign policy. She has criticised specific US policies when they conflict with German and European interests.
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