German Foreign Minister Says ‘We Are Fighting A War Against Russia’
This stands in stark contrast to claims of other German officials who have been extremely careful with their statements for nearly a year, insisting that their country is not directly involved in the Ukrainian conflict and citing uncontrollable escalation as their primary concern. However, this official stance is now in serious question, as one of the country’s top officials just effectively nullified all of their efforts. Annalena Baerbock started her statement at PACE with the following:
“And therefore I’ve said already in the last days – yes, we have to do more to defend Ukraine. Yes, we have to do more also on tanks. But the most important and the crucial part is that we do it together and that we do not do the blame game in Europe, because we are fighting a war against Russia and not against each other.”
Ironically, Chancellor Olaf Scholz and his now former defense minister Christine Lambrecht have been accused of being “weak” on arming the Neo-Nazi junta. They have frequently insisted that it would be dangerous to get more directly involved in NATO’s proxy war against Russia. However, it seems that the much more hawkish Baerbock is willing to say the quiet part out loud. Moscow immediately reacted to the comments, with Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova saying this is yet another proof that the political West was planning a war on Russia for quite some time now.
“If we add this to Merkel’s revelations that they were strengthening Ukraine and did not count on the Minsk agreements, then we are talking about a war against Russia that was planned in advance. Don’t say later that we didn’t warn you,” Zakharova said.
Baerbock’s comments come on the heels of nearly a year of direct Russophobic narrative, including openly declared plans for war with Russia. In mid-November, Der Spiegel published leaked German Defense Ministry documents, revealing that the Bundeswehr is preparing for war with Russia. The secret draft titled “Operational guidelines for the Armed Forces” was authored by none other than the German Chief of Staff, General Eberhard Zorn himself. He stressed the need for a “mega-reform” of the German military and clearly identified Russia as an “immediate threat”.
The claim makes little sense, as Germany is now over 1,500 km away from Russia, with Belarus, Poland and Ukraine standing between the two countries. While such assertions made some sense at the height of the (First) Cold War, when the Soviet Union had over half a million soldiers stationed in East Germany alone (in addition to other Warsaw Pact member states), the situation is effectively reversed nowadays. NATO is the one encroaching on Russia’s western borders, with the crawling expansion including coups and other interventions in various Eastern European and post-Soviet states. After decades of this creeping aggression and Moscow’s futile attempts to build a comprehensive partnership with the political West, Russia was forced to launch its counteroffensive.
Back in early March, the German government announced a dramatic increase in defense spending, including a €100 billion budget for the Bundeswehr, essentially double in comparison to 2021. Although this will inevitably put additional pressure on the already struggling German economy, ravaged by the sanctions boomerang from its failed economic siege of Russia, Berlin’s suicidal subservience to Washington DC seems to take precedence. Much of Germany’s prosperity was based on access to cheap Russian energy, now a thing of the past thanks to Berlin’s resurgent Russophobia.
In addition, Germany also uniquely holds historical responsibility on a scale virtually no other country in the world does, especially towards Russia. During the Second World War, it launched a brutal invasion of the Soviet Union, killing nearly 30 million people and destroying virtually everything in its path. Worse yet, after approximately 80 years of denazification in the aftermath of its WWII defeat, Berlin still decided to support the Neo-Nazi junta in Kiev, effectively renouncing its own official postwar political position. This also includes German weapons that are killing Russians, both soldiers and civilians.
Alarmed by the dramatic shift in rhetoric, many in Germany are already pointing out the fact that the country is repeating the same historical mistake by antagonizing Russia. Petr Bystron, an AfD (Alternative for Germany) member of the German Parliament, reminded his colleagues in the Bundestag of the consequences of sending German tanks to fight Russia in Ukraine:
“It’s an interesting approach you’re taking here. German tanks against Russia in Ukraine. By the way, your grandfathers have already tried to do it then with the Melnyks and Banderas [Ukrainian Nazi collaborators during WWII] and what was the result? Untold suffering, millions of deaths on both sides, and in the end, Russian tanks here in Berlin. And two of them are still here, in front of the Bundestag. You should pass by them every morning and remember it!”
Drago Bosnic is an independent geopolitical and military analyst.