Coffee House

US German relations nearing a post-war low

12 July 2014

2:45 PM

12 July 2014

2:45 PM

In an era of Russian revanchism, the cracks in the US German relations are particularly concerning. Angela Merkel’s decision to announce the expulsion of the CIA’s Berlin station chief over the US’s recruitment of a German intelligence officer shows just how bad things have got.

It is not just German elite opinion that is turning against the US. The Financial Times today reports that polling shows that Germans would prefer to increase ties with China than the US. Now, given that Beijing is an authoritarian government that would have no qualms about spying on anyone, this is not an entirely rational response. But it does reveal the poor state of the trans-Atlantic alliance.

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  • HookesLaw

    Kipper Central in full bigot mode again I see.

    • the viceroy’s gin

      …have they spoken against your islamofascist ISIS buddies then, lad?

  • Gold Bug

    China may be an authoritarian government but it doesn’t spy on everyone on the planet, nor does it use vicious Nazis or Jihadists to overthrow sovereign governments across the world. Nor, to my knowledge, does it conduct drone bombing campaigns or financial rape on any and every state it feels like.
    It’s about time some western governments stood up to Washington, sadly it won’t be the UK.

    • HookesLaw

      No it just executes people to harvest their organs.

  • AJH1968

    Spying on Germany is just common sense given their duplicity towards other nation states (Ukraine and Juncker). Not to mention exporting hi-tech equipment to the most noxious regimes on the planet. America owes Germany nothing, where would they be without the martial plan, and the Berlin airlift. Britain and America were looking forward then as they are probably doing now. The Germans just seem to be just interested in running trade deficits with their fellow EU members and good relations with those paragons of virtue China and Russia. Yes I know that the Marshall plan was a long time ago, but would any other victor have behaved so magnanimously, definitely not the French or Russians, the Germans???

    • HookesLaw

      Strange – I would not think you would approve of a martial plan.

      • AJH1968

        Puts a different spin on my post, I meant to say Marshall not martial (apologies and well spotted)

        • the viceroy’s gin

          …no need to apologize to that troll.

  • https://mikestallard.virtualgallery.com/ Mike Stallard

    PS Here is Ukrainian joke, told me by someone from Donetsk this week:

    “Where are the borders of Sweden?”
    “Well, you have to look at Finland, the Baltic and Norway for that…”
    “Where are the borders of Russia?”
    “Wherever they say they are.”

  • https://mikestallard.virtualgallery.com/ Mike Stallard

    President Obama is a racist disaster. Britain is simply frozen out. The Germans are pacifist (with very good reason) and, frankly, a bit adolescent anyway as regards foreign policy. The Chinese are very clever and they know how to do humility and playing the waiting game. Then there are the Russians… And the Middle East…

    We seem to be completely defenceless, without allies, and stranded at the edge of the Baroness Ashton 1970s EU, very unpopular and with not a friend in the world.

    Dangerous…

    • HookesLaw

      Germany was hardly pacifist during ther cold war. It was vital. Germany is not neutral (like say Ireland) it is part of NATO.

      Everybody spies on everybody.

  • Jackthesmilingblack

    “US German relations nearing a post-war low”
    I read that Germany is considering offering Ed Snowden asylum.

    Mission Accomplished.

  • Smithersjones2013

    Sounds like Germany is getting to big for it’s Jackboots again……

    • HookesLaw

      Yawn. Sticking to the racial stereotypes like a good kipper.

      • the viceroy’s gin

        …actually, you’re the only one constantly shrieking about waaaaaaaycism in here, laddie.

  • beenzrgud

    I simply don’t trust Merkel and many of the senior politicians in Germany. They certainly aren’t looking out for UK interests, and they aren’t above being dishonest ( for want of a better word) when it comes to pushing for their personal objectives. It’s not PC but, it makes sense to try and get any info that would help us not to be tripped up by Germany. Saying that, I don’t endorse surveillance of the general population.

  • global city

    and Britain is being dragged in on the German side, oppositional to the US, even seeing them as enemies. This attitude is way too common on the continent.

  • Flintshire Ian

    Nobody ever really completely trusts the Germans’ motives and it is understandable that the Americans continue to keep them under surveillance. The Blessed Margaret was right about reunification.
    (By the way I will be cheering for Germany tomorrow night – as I did against Brasil)

  • foto2021

    We should be just as sceptical of the US as the Germans are. The subservient attitude towards Washington of successive UK governments since 1979 is sickening.

    • telemachus

      Quite
      Particularly obsequious Thatcher to Reagan

      • Curnonsky

        Particularly obsequious Blair to Martin McGuinness.

  • Andy

    Just shows how deep runs the German totalitarian mindset.

    • telemachus

      At the end of the last conflict the EU founding fathers embarked on the project to ensure never again
      It is our duty to support them

      • Andy

        It is our duty not to be part of their Fascist State.

      • Frank

        Actually, just after WWR2, France tried to sign a treaty with Russia, got rebuffed and started talking to Germany. This eventually led to the EU. France (De Gaulle) was driven by his jealousy and sense of inadequacy, he saw the Anglo-American axis as dominant everywhere, couldn’t see this as friendly (despite the Marshall Pact aid which kept France from starving in 1945 & 1946), and thought that creating a Franco-German axis would re-balance the power equation! To be absolutely clear, De Gaulle’s goals (and Jean Monnet’s) had nothing whatsoever to do with creating an enduring peace (whatever you have read in EU press hand-outs).

    • HookesLaw

      There was me thinking it ws UKIP sucking up to Putin. Good to see your prejudices are in fine fettle.

      • Andy

        We have seen what German domination and arrogance has done in Europe. I suggest you go and walk in a Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery and see the stones row upon row of them with the inscription ‘A Solider of the Second World War: Known unto God’. Come back then with your usual tripe. I don’t trust the Germans because history and experience shows you can’t. If MI6 are not busy spying on them I damn well want to know why not.

      • global city

        You didn’t really write that did you…… ah, God, you did.

      • the viceroy’s gin

        …and there was me knowing you Camerluvvie socialist nutters were sucking up to ISIS. Good to see your Christian slaughtering prejudices are in fine fettle.

      • Wessex Man

        Examples please Hooky babe.

  • Curnonsky

    Or the Germans could be responding in a perfectly rational (if amoral) way to the changing power dynamic as the US weakens under Obama and Russia and China increase their sway. Certainly it is safer to be at arms’ length from America these days than to be its ally (just ask Mubarak).

    • telemachus

      Not just safer
      But morally more pure

      • The Masked Marvel

        A New Order, in other words, yes?

      • global city

        of course, you will be disappointed that the US kept us out of the claws of the Soviets?

  • alabenn

    Germany seems to think that assuming close ties with Russia and China is in their interests, it might be economically worthwhile but it is a massive political mistake to snub the only guarantor of your physical safety for short term economic gain.
    Russia has a predilection for lashing out and grabbing assets and land and it has a very short democratic existence, not a country to gamble on.
    China is devoid of any democratic principals and it tyrants would sacrifice all to cling on to power, another potential basket case a few shots away from stability.
    The US is in the throws of dealing with having elected a dangerously inexperienced man but it still the only guarantor of safety Europe has at the moment, it will take a generation for the continent to put in place a stable and really effective military, it cannot afford futile gestures like this from Merkel, a woman who still carries the East German mindset of doing what she is told by her superiors, instead of the communist party it is the men in grey suits that run Germany who pull her strings..

    • telemachus

      Just what are the democratic credentials of the US
      The only folks who can even bid for power there are those with or who can command unlimited money
      Further just why would we want to be hitched to a power that has destroyed to countries and turned another, Syria into a festering cesspit of terrorism

      • Colonel Mustard

        Tag

        • telemachus

          Glad to see your banner proclaiming socialism
          We all become more reasonable as we age

          • Colonel Mustard

            That’s what it ‘proclaims’ does it? Well, well.

            Has a picture of you in it too.

            • telemachus

              Thank goodness for the casual glance
              All folks see is the black letters
              *
              I keep saying appearances and sound bites are all

              • Inverted Meniscus

                If you happen to be an ignorant, amoral socialist nutter.

                • telemachus

                  A lot of mutually exclusive adjectives
                  Try adherant to the reasonable caring philosophy of socialism

                • Inverted Meniscus

                  That would be the caring philosophy of Hitler, Stalin, Mao and Pol Pot. Socialism the biggest killer of the 20th century.

                • Wessex Man

                  whyt oh why after a this time are you indulging this pompous little lying communist?

      • global city

        I think you are confusing the Presidential elections with the plethora of other democratic processes, checks and balances the Americans have through their whole system.

      • Smithersjones2013

        It’s called the US Constitution and it begins:

        We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

        And I’m sure the vast majority of US citizens would tell you where you could stick your sad little socialist opinions!

        • monty61

          Read it to the people of Vietnam, or Guatemala, or Cuba for that matter. It’s the biggest load of humbug ever put on paper.

          • Colonel Mustard

            You know nothing about Vietnam. You were four years old when regular American troops deployed there by which time the communists in the North had been murdering their opponents for more than 20 years. You think Ho’s legacy was a better blueprint for people than the US constitution? Then you are just another silly Western wannabe communist in a Che Guevara t-shirt.

            • telemachus

              Vietnam demonstates the gung ho stupidity of the US

              *

              The primary assumption leading to the Vietnam War was that if South Vietnam was lost to the Communists, the remaining non-communist states of Southeast Asia would be incapable of resisting the aggressive thrust of what was understood to be a hostile hegemonic movement.[1] But by contrast, the Vietnamese Communists were fighting to achieve the unification of their own country and its recognition as a sovereign-state. The withdrawal of U.S. military forces allowed them to make their own ideologically driven economic policy mistakes, the failure of which agenda, culminating in Bush’s Hanoi toast-offered during the eventually led to policies more consistent with Washington’s U.S. president’s visit to Vietnam for an annual summit of Asian and Pacific leaders(in 2006). The Vietnam War demonstrated that political warfare is not necessarily a zero sum game.

              • Colonel Mustard

                Do give over, you haven’t a clue. The Vietnam war was simply a war of aggressive union towards a single party state pursued by the communists in the north. It would be like a Tory Westminster (with all other political parties banned) invading and subverting an independent Scotland by asserting that the SNP regime was corrupt and unpopular. Don’t conflate management of the war itself with the underlying imperatives and ethics of it.

                There was an element of religion too as the atheistic north exploited Buddhist hostility to minority Catholic rule in the South to become strange bedfellows (like Labour and Islamic extremists).

                Towards the end the vast majority of the “insurgent” Viet Cong was actually provided by northern manpower. The US lost the war on the campuses of the West as the Soviet-sponsored “agents of influence” hi-jacked the peace movement on behalf of their communist paymasters.

                The Vietnam War is one of the most misrepresented, lied about, cliché-hindered historical events of the 20th Century, still serving current ideological aspirations and prejudices.

          • the viceroy’s gin

            …the people of Vietnam, Guatemala and Cuba are all desperate to come to the country of that Constitution, lad. You may not have noticed. I guess they disagree with your assertion about them.

        • pointlesswasteoftime

          The Supreme Court has been systematically shredding the bits of the constitution it doesn’t like. The president has the power to order drone surveillance (and, I believe) elimination of American citizens on foreign soil. Corporations are judged to be “individuals” under the constitution with the same rights as ordinary people. USA is in as big a political and institutional and moral mess as we are. But it was a nice idea while it lasted.

          • the viceroy’s gin

            The SC has been shredding constitutional bits for more than a century. It’s not a recently developed process.

    • BarkingAtTreehuggers

      Yes, an East German mindset keeping in check an indigenous Bavarian elite whilst leading a Germanic centre right (!) for over a decade to inevitable Aryan domination, sponsored by Deutsche. Why don’t you say so – everyone’s in it!

      Lord almighty – how little do you ranting loons actually know?

      • alabenn

        ( keeping the workers in near full employment by selling windmills and other superior goods to the world )
        Yes they do that very well, while at the same time selling nuclear and chemical warfare components to nutjobs in terror states around the world, do you for one serious minute think the likes of Pakistan and North Korea had the capability to make the instruments and machine tools to make their basic nuclear bombs.
        That is why the US, the UK, France, Japan, China and Russia spy on Germany, they do not trust you,

        • BarkingAtTreehuggers

          Everyone spies on everybody, dear children. What did you think the brand spanking new BND building the size of three football pitches is for?
          That wasn’t my point though, was it.

          • alabenn

            So why is Rosa Klebb lookalike Angela puffing up her faux outrage, does she not realise Obama is a man of clay.

            • BarkingAtTreehuggers

              Perhaps it has occurred to you that she is asserting her position – because she can?

              • alabenn

                There is a world of difference between can and should, she does not appear to have broadened her horizons since the fall of the wall.
                Anyhow, good luck tonight in the final.

                • BarkingAtTreehuggers

                  Tee hee. BRASI:7 cannot be repeated tonight.
                  An AR6:3NTINA seems highly unlikely.

          • Wessex Man

            You have a point?

    • McClane

      You make a number of possibly valid points. Germany is afraid of Russia, and has been for years. It has always chosen either to invade it or accommodate it. Merkel is more Prussian than German,

      And it’s ‘throes’, not ‘throws’.

      • Andy

        Of course they once made a pact with Russia. As I recall Poland paid for that with a fifth of her population.

        • McClane

          Absolutely right. And they made a pact with the Russians in the Three Emperors’ League in 1873 (Dreikaiserbund). That’s what I meant by ‘accommodate it’.

          It is Poland’s fate to suffer. Many of her greatest cities are now in the Ukraine and Belarus.

          • Andy

            I was think of more recent events and the Nazis/Bolshies.

    • Ollie

      “Only Guarantor of (Germany’s) Physical safety”, You mean other than the rest of NATO? You’re being absurd.

      • anyfool

        The NATO you have in your minds eye is totally different from the actual NATO.
        The countries of Europe have all but destroyed their defence capability, their militaries are barely capable of doing relief work let alone defending against a possible incursion by a hostile force.
        The German Army is actually a German joke for want of a better line, in fact a German joke would be more lethal.
        The Russians would be in Berlin before the Wehrmacht had done its health and safety checks.

        • Ollie

          I think you’re still living in a bygone era. The idea that the Russian military as of now could take on the whole of Eastern Europe, Scandanavia, France, Britain, Italy, Germany is quite frankly ridiculous. The Russian military isn’t what it was in 1945 you know, Its Navy its essential rusting away except from a few recent innovations, it’s army is no wear near as well equiped as say, the British Army is. Russia has a lower GDP than France, Britain or Germany independent of each other let alone combined, as well as the former two with a submarine nuclear deterrent. The Russian economy relies on international markets now, unlike in the Soviet era. I think you’re over estimating the US’s diplomatic and military influence.

  • dalai guevara

    Some will demand Fulbright fixing this behind the scenes.

    • the viceroy’s gin

      …you mean behind the scenes, where you work your sockpuppets?

  • telemachus

    We need to stand with Merkel and her people against the morally bankrupt US
    *
    The last time we stood with the US we triggered events that have led to ISIS

    • you_kid

      printing $5,000,000,000,000 of free cash would simply make them bankrupt in my book.

      • the viceroy’s gin

        …so what does your 5,000,000,000,000 sockpuppets do, lad?

    • Inverted Meniscus

      Yes let’s ignore their impact on the outcome of the first and second world wars. Idiot.

      • telemachus

        It is precisely because of the origin of these conflicts that we must take the course I advocate

        • Inverted Meniscus

          You are an utter scumbag. Begone.

          • telemachus

            You absolutely cannot refute
            1. That one of the founding motivations of the EU was to bind Germany in peace
            2. That in this aim it has been a success

            • Colonel Mustard

              Tag tag tag tag tag

        • Colonel Mustard

          Tag tag tag tag

  • Winston Burchill

    Regardless of this we ourselves need to foster closer relations with the Chinese.

    • telemachus

      Indeed
      Both with the EU and on our own behalf
      The Chinese par excellence have made it clear that they do not regard the UK as credible outside the context of the EU

      • ButcombeMan

        It is important to understand and you appear not to, that any pronouncements on the UK/EU relationship, by /anyone/ outside the UK, is guided by their perceived self interest, not ours.

        • telemachus

          But the 2 so often coincide

      • Inverted Meniscus

        A spectacular lie but what else should we expect.

        • telemachus

          Experts say Chinese money will help Europe out of the economic slowdown. Take the port of Piraeus as an example – although the Greek economy has been devastated by the global financial crisis, the Chinese-run port has stayed afloat and is becoming one of Europe’s main shipping hubs.

      • global city

        They said quite the opposite.

        They actually (correctly) said that the EU is irrelevant.

        • telemachus

          The Sino-European lovefest is by no means a one-way street. The latest Chinese charm offensive in Europe was led by President Xi himself. In April of this year, he swung through the Netherlands, Germany, France, and Belgium on a highly publicized state visit and became the first Chinese president to be hosted by the European Union at its headquarters in Brussels. In June, China’s number two, Premier Li Keqiang, was in Britain (where he was given an audience with the Queen, an unusual gesture that broke British royal protocol because Li was not a head of state).

          • global city

            Europe is not the EU. You raise an issue that goes to the heart of the matter however.

  • Wessex Man

    It’s like a European Group madness, the Germans would rather increase ties with China than the USA! the truly maddening thing about it is that our ‘Leaders’ will fight tooth and nail to keep us in the increasing bankrupt EU.

    • telemachus

      Our leaders want is to prosper
      Prosperity in our modern world needs a large dynamic grouping
      The EU is our only viable option

      • Andy

        Only reason you love the EU so much is because you see it as a way of being able to goose step down the Unter den Linden again.

        • telemachus

          We have a duty to bind Germany into our pan European democratic project

          • Colonel Mustard

            Tag tag tag

      • Colonel Mustard

        Tag tag

      • global city

        Viable. In what ways?

    • you_kid

      Is that so? Some young’un asserts that that was so and you take everything literally? Now, perhaps your ‘leaders’ are not telling you something then, or they are perhaps simply more clevererer than we think you are.

      • the viceroy’s gin

        …so, more clever than your army of sockpuppets?

      • Wessex Man

        yes that’s so babe!

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