Appeal to Chancellor Scholz from SPD and Labor to Press for a Ceasefire
The traditional labor movement in Germany finally launched a powerful appeal to Chancellor Scholz on March 31 under the title “Make Peace! Armistice and Common Security Now!”. The call, signed by 100 leaders, was initiated by historian Peter Brandt, the son of former German Chancellor Willy Brandt, who originally launched the policy of détente with Soviet leader Brezhnev in the 1970s. Other initiators include Reiner Hoffmann, the former chairman of the DGB labor federation; and Reiner Braun, the head of the International Peace Office. Brandt and Braun were among the first signers of the Wagenknecht-Schwarzer manifest for peace (cf. SAS 9-11/23).
“The war has turned into a bloody war of positions in which there are only losers. A large part of our citizens do not want to see a spiral of violence without end. Instead of the dominance of the military, we need the language of diplomacy and peace”, their statement reads. “The policy of peace and détente to which we owe German unity and the overcoming of European division is not obsolete. We have championed their goals in the past and continue to do so today.”
It further states that “Peace can only be created on the basis of international law and only with Russia”. Therefore, the signers “encourage the Federal Chancellor, together with France, to persuade Brazil, China, India and Indonesia in particular to mediate in order to achieve a ceasefire quickly. That would be a necessary step to stop the killing and sound out opportunities for peace. Only then can the path be paved toward a common security order in Europe.” )
Ukraine’s ambassador to Germany, Oleksii Makeiev, immediately denounced the call, saying its only purpose was to cover up Russian war crimes and Moscow’s responsibility for the war. Ukrainian Deputy Foreign Minister Andriy Melnyk was even less diplomatic, tweeting to “Peter Brandt & Co.”: “Go to hell with your senile idea of reaching a ‘quick ceasefire’ and ‘making peace only with Russia’.”
Antiwar sentiment is also growing in the wing of the Left Party representing labor interests.On March 30, Klaus Ernst, a founder and member of parliament of the Linke, lashed out against the party leadership for weakening the left with its “green agenda”. “I wonder why it doesn’t seem to bother the party leadership that we used to have 20% of workers as voters and now we have just 2%… . Instead of analyzing this, [party dissident Sahra] Wagenknecht is being asked to explain whether or not she is founding her own party. This is all absolutely incomprehensible and leads to the dwarfing of the left.”
Klaus Ernst also defended the Feb. 25 peace rally in Berlin initiated by Wagenknecht and Alice Schwarzer, and blasted his party’s leaders for not supporting it.