German Cross-Party Alliance Launches Manifesto against War
The efforts to build a grass roots anti-war movement in the transatlantic world are gaining momentum in the run-up to the mass demonstrations and rallies that are planned for the weekends of Feb. 18 and 25 (cf. SAS 6/23). The revelations on the sabotage of the Nord Stream pipeline, combined with Global NATO’s push to supply more and more sophisticated weapons to Ukraine while refusing to pursue a diplomatic settlement, have further eroded confidence in the Western “elites”. As a result, the “war party” is fully mobilized to undermine the growing movement with typical “divide and conquer” tactics and personal slanders.
In Germany, a key country for the war effort, a new manifesto against war and for peace talks on Ukraine has just been initiated by Sahra Wagenknecht, the leading voice on the left, and Alice Schwarzer, the leading political feminist and publisher of the magazine EMMA. They warn that “if the fighting continues like this, Ukraine will soon be a depopulated, destroyed country. And many people throughout Europe are also afraid of an expansion of the war. They fear for their future and that of their children.” They express their solidarity with the Ukrainian people, but question a Western policy whose sole war goal is “defeat Russia across the board”, at the risk of “heading inexorably down a slippery slope toward world war and nuclear war? It would not be the first major war that has started this way. But it might be the last.”
The manifesto, released Feb. 10, stresses that “negotiating does not mean surrendering. Negotiating means making compromises, on both sides. With the goal of preventing further hundreds of thousands of deaths and worse. That’s what we think too, that’s what half of the German population thinks. It is time to listen to us!”
“We citizens of Germany cannot directly influence America and Russia or our European neighbors. But we can and must hold our government and the Chancellor to account and remind him of his oath to ‘avert harm from the German people’. We call on the Chancellor to stop the escalation of arms deliveries. Now! He should lead a strong alliance for a ceasefire and for peace negotiations on the German as well as on the European level. Now! Because every lost day costs up to 1,000 more lives – and brings us closer to a 3rd world war.”
This manifesto is different from the various Open Letters of 2022, in that there are prominent signers from across party lines, including Rudolf Dressler, former State Secretary (SPD), Peter Gauweiler (CSU), and Tino Chrupalla (co-chairman of the AfD). It has also been signed by Angelika Claußen, IPPNW Vice-President Europe, Gen. (ret.) Erich Vad, former adviser to Chancellor Merkel, and Justus Frantz, a well known musical festival organizer.
The manifesto, which aims to build support for a rally in Berlin on Feb. 25, was signed by 350,000 people within the first three days. The most hysterical reaction from the government side came from its leading warmonger, Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock of the Greens. “A dictatorial peace, as some are now calling for, is not peace. Rather, it would be the subjugation of Ukraine to Russia.“