Pipeline No, NATO No. Trump asks to leave NATO

By Uli Gellermann.

With his usual brutality, Donald Trump has been making the interests of the USA clear these days: Germany should stop the Nord Stream 2 project and launched a US law that he calls “To protect Europe’s energy security”. Even politically uneducated people know that it’s all about the sales of the US fracking industry and the competition of the US with Russia and against the national sovereignty of the Germans. Above all, however, it is about the thick NATO billet: for it will be ships of the NATO partner USA that will, in case of doubt, prevent the maritime laying of the pipeline. At the latest now, the NATO treaty would have to be terminated by the Germans, or at least this step would have to be brought into the next negotiations.

At least Dietmar Bartsch, leader of the Left fraction, is brave and demands countermeasures. He said that the US step was a “completely unacceptable process and a low point in transatlantic relations”. He expects the German government not to leave “this economic war” unanswered and to initiate counter-sanctions. The word NATO does not appear in Bartsch’s statement. And so his protest remains rather a gesture.

Even the SPD in dissolution finds fairly clear words: SPD fraction leader Rolf Mützenich calls the sanctions an encroachment on the energy policy sovereignty of the European Union. They burdened the transatlantic relationship. “The EU and Germany are apparently not allied partners for Trump, but rather vassals liable to pay tribute,” he says, preparing for Christmas vacation. There is no mention of NATO.

The GRÜNEN, with their foreign policy spokesman, Omid Nouripour, come up with one thing on the one hand and another on the other: “Just as I think Nord Stream is wrong, I think Germany’s freedom to choose its business freely is non-negotiable.” After the Green invasion of the Republic of Yugoslavia at NATO’s side, the Fischer clan really could not be expected to make a statement to NATO. In fact, however, the freedom of German business finds its limits in the business of the USA.

But, one might think, the AfD, which behaves nationally and oppositionally, could now take up the fight for national sovereignty. But in these days of national hardship, the AfD only offers slouch hats on its current website: “Donald Trump’s policy is predictable – Trump’s approach to Russia is to be welcomed from a German perspective,” reports AfD Aktuell. Since this party is programmatically a NATO sweetheart, the forbidden word does not appear on its website either.

The Transatlantic Coordinator of the German Government, Peter Beyer, sings well and obediently: “Germany (will) not take any countermeasures. If it did, it would have to do so at the European level anyway, but that’s not going to happen either.” The apparently clever Merkel is babbling in the Trump sanctions context: “We are against extraterritorial sanctions”, so she does not want to lift a finger against the USA. What could interterritorial sanctions be, which she is also not considering, but which would seem to be an alternative?

Of course, the paternalistic policy of the USA will also apply to the “Turkish Stream” project – a Russian pipeline that is to bring gas to Turkey through the Black Sea. And as historical coincidence and the US empire would have it, Turkey is also a NATO partner of the USA. Thus another rift is opening up in NATO. Whoever wants to exploit this rift will have to talk seriously with the Russians:

Without cooperation with Russia, there is no protection against the US racketeers.


Thanks to the author for the right to publish.


Picture source: Lazo / shutterstock


This article appeared on the blog Rationalgalerie on 23 December 2019.


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