The ruling SPD demands that Germany be the “leading power” in the world


Klingbeil: ‘We have to live up to the expectations they have of us’

Germany must develop a new role on the world stage as a “leading power,” the president of the ruling Social Democratic Party (SPD), Lars Klingbeil, said on Tuesday, demanding that this country take on much greater responsibility in international politics. . “After nearly 80 years of moderation, today Germany has a new role in the international coordinate system,” emphasized Klingbeil during an ideological intervention at a conference of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation, close to the SPD. At the same time, Europe must become the “most attractive center in the world” in the battle for international relations and to this end “Germany must have the right to be a leading power”, stressed the leader of the Federal Chancellor’s Party, Olaf Scholz.

“Germany is increasingly in the spotlight and we must live up to the expectations that have been placed on us,” said the SPD chairman, emphasizing that this country has earned a high level of international trust over the past decades, meaning that the fulfillment of certain obligations. Due to its historical past as a country that unleashed the Second World War and subjected itself to the dictates of National Socialism, the Federal Republic has so far withdrawn as a middle power at the international level in the fields of security, defense and armaments, a fact that must radically change the opinion of the head of the SPD. Klinbeil warned those in attendance that the war unleashed by the Kremlin will inevitably affect international politics for at least “the next 20 years.”

After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the West was “too sure” that a model of state and society would eventually be imposed and that “a war between states in Europe was unthinkable,” Klingbeil declared, for which Western countries they should come up with. now ‘what can we do better in the future’. The leader of the German Social Democracy said it is now very important for Germany to strengthen its army, as peace policy also means “considering military force as a legitimate means of doing politics”, even when it should be considered “the last means’, calling for a ‘completely new’ debate on security policy in Germany.

Closing your eyes to reality leads to war. We see it in Ukraine. For me, peace politics means that military force is a legitimate political tool,” said Klingbeil, calling for greater respect and recognition for the military in this country. In spite of everything, he assured that his demands did not imply a rejection of the traditional pacifist policies of German Social Democracy. The Federal Chancellors of the SPD in the 1970s and early 1980s, Willy Brandt and Helmut Schmidt, already knew that the basis of a solid peace policy is military strength and capacity, and “at the time defense budgets were more than 3% of our GDP” , added the chairman of the oldest German party.

Lars Klingbeil acknowledged that this country has made “mistakes” in its dealings with its partners in Central and Eastern Europe and has been unable to interpret the signals from Moscow, most recently after Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014. « When we hear from the Baltic states or Poland that they are afraid of becoming Russia’s next target, we have to take it very seriously,” said the 44-year-old politician. In international politics in the coming years there will be increasing competition for international relations with states such as Russia and China, said the head of the SPD, for which Europe “must be given more weight as a geopolitical player” as “Germany can only become strong, if Europe is strong too’.

Therefore, he demanded that new relations and structures be created at the international level that “have more value for all parties”, but always without forgetting the values ​​of the West. “There can be no cooperation without a position,” the SPD chairman finally stated. After the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Chancellor Olaf Scholz largely distanced himself from traditional German security and defense policy in a speech to the Bundestag, the German parliament. He then stressed the need for Germany to take on greater responsibilities at the international level and announced the approval of an extraordinary budget of 100,000 million euros to modernize and rearm the Bundeswehr, the federal army. However, the head of the German government has not gone as far as Klingbeil, nor has he ever demanded that this country take on a role as a ‘leading power’ in the world.

Source: La Verdad


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