Germany: A Green Chancellor Candidate Firmly Rooted in Transatlantic Geopolitics
The time when the German Green Party professed anti-Establishment, anti-militarist and anti-NATO views, is long since past. But if any doubts still subsisted, they must have been dissipated by the nomination of Annalena Baerbock as the party’s chancellor candidate. Just how little the financial elite fears her policy orientation was expressed by none other than the head of the European Central Bank, Christine Lagarde, during an April 23 press conference. Asked about the inexperience of the Green candidate, Lagarde surprised everyone by praising her as “a young woman who is very committed to climate change and environmental protection”, which are “very important issues for me as well”.
On military matters, Annalena Baerbock would likely be no less conformist. She not only supports the increase of defense expenditures in order to equip soldiers with better weapons and materials to carry out “humanitarian” interventions, but has criticized Europe’s failure to intervene in time in Syria, thereby leaving the country exposed to the alleged atrocities that followed.
Strategically, Baerbock is opposed to the completion of the new gas pipeline between Russia and Germany (and Europe), calling it an affront to Ukraine as well as a project that increases energy dependency on Russia (and on natural gas). “I would have since long withdrawn political support for Nord Stream 2”, she said in an interview in the April 25 Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung, in which she also called for “increasing the pressure on Russia” over the crisis in Ukraine and the Donbass.
In the same interview, the Green leader described German and European relations with China as a “competition between systems”, of “authoritarian forces versus liberal democracies”. China’s “Belt and Road” initiative, in her view, is not just nice investments, but “hardcore power politics.” And she accused Beijing of imposing “forced labor” on the Uyghur population.
As for relations with the Biden Administration, she is looking forward to a restart of the U.S.-German alliance, in the form of a “transatlantic climate partnership”. Implicitly endorsing a European Army, she calls for advancing a defense and security union. And although explicitly asked, she did not support the withdrawal of American nuclear weapons from Germany…
On many other occasions, Annalena Baerbock has expounded on her climate protection targets. In terms of industrial production, she has advocated advancing the official exit dates for coal from 2038 to 2030, and for cars without electric engines to 2030. She favors, of course, the production of “green steel”, i.e., with the power source no longer being coal but renewables such as solar and wind, which, she claims, would offer Germany opportunities to export to the rest of Europe and prevent “authoritarian China” from flooding the market with its own steel.