Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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The collapsing US military & economic empire is making Washington & NATO even more dangerous. US could not beat the Taliban but thinks it can take on China-Russia-Iran...a sign of psychopathology for sure.

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

German Green Foreign Minister Baerbock in Washington's pocket

The German Green Party Co-leader Annalena Baerbock is now foreign minister in the new government and is a long-time opponent of the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline project from Russia to Germany.    

New German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock is causing serious tensions as she opposes the Russia-to-Germany natural gas pipeline called Nord Stream 2. The pipeline (a joint project between Russia and several European energy companies) has been completed and is now waiting for final approval from the German government to turn it on. Former German Chancellor Angela Merkel was a supporter of this project.

The controversial pipeline project, which runs from Ust-Luga in Russia to Lubmin in north-east Germany, is also likely to be the first test of the new German government’s already shaky coalition government.

The pipeline does not cross Ukrainian territory, which means that Ukraine would lose its status as the most important transit territory and the revenue that comes with it. Thus the right-wing government in Kiev is quite angry about Nord Stream 2 and is doing all they can to kill the project.

Baerbock, the 40-year-old Green co-leader, has long opposed the pipeline, but the new German chancellor Olaf Scholz’s Social Democratic Party (SPD) supports it.

It is known that large sections of German business community strongly support Nord Stream 2. Without Russian gas supplies, Germany will not be able to meet its energy needs in the coming years as it moves away from nuclear energy and coal-fired power generation. Just last week Scholz commented that he was the leader of the new government and would be making decisions about foreign policy. What problems this will cause with Baerbock and the Green Party have yet to be determined.

Already Europe has had too dip into their gas reserves and many fear that the US-NATO aggressive drive against Russia could create a war that would cut gas supplies from Russia completely. This of course would cause severe hardship for people across Europe this winter and would drive the economy throughout Europe into the ground.

When fully operational, the pipeline would transport 55bn cubic metres of gas to Germany every year, equivalent to about 15% of the EU’s total gas imports.

Baerboc's positions on China and Russia boost her appeal to a Biden administration wary of Chancellor Olaf Scholz, whose SPD has traditionally been more sympathetic toward Russia.

On January 17 Baerbock visited Kiev where she met with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba. She also held talks with Ukrainian President Zelenskyy.

At a press conference after talks with Baerbock, Kuleba thanked Germany for its support and friendship. He also expressed gratitude for the way Baerbock's Green Party opposes Nord Stream 2.

Earlier in the month, on January 5, Baerbock traveled to Washington to meet with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. "The more difficult times, the more important strong partnerships are - and as Europeans we have no stronger partner than the USA," Baerbock told Blinkin. The Green politician emphasized that Germany had also supported Ukraine, for example, by setting up a military hospital. Blinken replied that the US would continue to supply Ukraine with 'defensive weapons'. 


Secretary of State Antony Blinken holds a news conference with German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock at the State Department on January 5 in Washington

What happened to the German Greens?

With her aggressive stance against Russia, Baerbock is following in the footsteps of the last Green Foreign Minister, Joschka Fischer, who held the office from 1998 to 2005. At the time of the Rambouillet Conference, Fischer, in close cooperation with US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, constructed the pretext for the NATO war against Serbia, an ally of Russia. (Fischer's sell out to the US-NATO war machine really angered the traditional peace movement in Germany and drove many activists away from the Greens.)

In 2014, the Greens and their Heinrich Böll Foundation actively helped fuel the Maidan protests, which served as a cover to overthrow elected Ukrainian President Yanukovych with the help of right-wing extremists and replace him with a nationalist, pro-Western regime. Despite the central role that fascist forces played in this coup, the Greens glorified it as a democratic revolution.

In 2008 I was invited to speak on space issues at the Global Greens conference in São Paulo, Brazil. I had been a Green party member for many years - largely inspired to join during the early 1980's when the German Greens were led by Petra Kelly who was a great inspiration to the German and international peace movement during the height of the Cold War. 

It didn't take me long to see that the German Greens in 2008 were not the same political party that had existed during the early 1980's. 

Because the German's were the largest and strongest of the Green party groups around the world they ran the Brazil Global Greens confab with an iron fist. They were not in the least bit interested in any peace and justice issues - all they wanted to talk about was how to take power. They had a real corporate feel to them.

And now they have won some power and it appears quite clearly they have become one more version of a US-NATO lap dog.

In the recent past I've seen quotes from Baerbock that as a replacement for Russia's natural gas via Nord Stream 2, she supported Europe purchasing much more expensive LNG (fracked gas) from the US that would be sent overseas by ship.  This proposal, strongly supported by most in Washington, is not being picked up by many political leaders in Europe - including the new leader of the German government Olaf Scholz.

How effective Baerbock will be in her new role as Foreign Minister is unknown at this time. But the fact that she is already causing some degree of disharmony within the new ruling German government by her anti-Russian thinking is not a good omen. 


~ Some of the above information was copied from multiple articles found on the Internet


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