Explosive study: China and Putin take Germany in a vise, and the “senior ally” on behalf of US all only spoils (Business Insider, Germany)

Germany has become a “front” in a new cold war between the West, Russia and China, writes British expert on security John kampfner in the new study.

This “great ally” of Germany (in Germany called the US — approx. ed.) makes the situation only worse, suggests the author: “a Bad relationship between Donald trump and Merkel stepped up German sense of vulnerability to potential threats from China and Russia.”

A number of examples Kampfner shows how Russia and China, ignoring the Federal government is already expanding its influence in Germany.

Expert on security John kampfner from the British research Institute Royal United Services Institute presents a grim picture. According to his analysis, Germany in a new cold war between the West and Russia and China became “the front”. While Russia and China are actively trying to interfere in the politics of the country and to sow instability in the region.

While Russia and China are increasingly trying to actively spread its influence on the land and municipal level, bypassing the Federal government. While Russia mainly operates in the political sphere, China focused primarily on economic issues.

In fact, Russia and China see in Germany, the key to Europe. Germany has not only the strongest economy of the continent. The result of the British Breccia and the ongoing internal problems of France and Germany in political terms, has gained more weight.

Trump is not a fan of neither NATO nor the EU nor Merkel

However, multi-year, German Chancellor Angela Merkel in recent years has not made life of Russia and China is easy. It was the political motor of anti-Russian sanctions which the EU imposed because of the Crimea crisis. It is also much more critical considering China’s desire to expand its influence, than do cinofilia heads of States in the South and South-East Europe.

For a long time on the side Merkel was and the United States. But with the arrival of Donald trump in the White house, the situation with the cover rear from Washington has become problematic. “Bad relations between Donald trump and Merkel reinforced the sense in Germany that she is vulnerable to threats from China and Russia that the United States in such a situation will not protect,” writes Kampfner.

Trump is not a fan of the Western military Alliance NATO. He’s not a fan of the EU. It is also not a fan of Germany. Moreover, he believes that Germany is profiting from his country economically (the key word is trade surplus) and militarily (the key word is failure to reach Germany trims defence spending to 2% of GDP). Therefore, in the spring of 2017, the Chancellor said: “the Times in which we could rely on others in the past. We Europeans must take our destiny in our own hands”.

From this moment on German-American relations increasingly deteriorated. Trump, according to rumors, behind the scenes honor of Frau Merkel “stupid” and “loser.” In addition, it publicly announced the withdrawal of about a third based in Germany the us military. Bundestag Deputy from the CDU Peter Beyer, meets in the faction for German-American relations, called it “totally unacceptable”. This Christian Democrat put it metaphorically: “My TRANS-Atlantic heart bleeds”.

At the same time Germany even before trump’s not always danced to the tune of the United States. It is, for example, cooperated with Russia in the energy sector. The severity of the issue is shown by the debate around the “Nord stream — 2”. On the Ukrainian crisis, Merkel is not as tough as the allies on the other side of the ocean. But despite this, the relationship of Merkel and Putin are considered to be strained.

Putin is looking for a Pro-Russian politicians and finds them

Apparently, for this reason, the head of the Kremlin have been looking for more Pro German politicians — and he found them right populist party “Alternative for Germany” (ADH) and lipopolysaccha party “Left”. But also among the Prime Ministers of the Eastern lands from the CDU and the SPD (Social democratic party of Germany), which last year unanimously called for the abolition of anti-Russian sanctions. The economy of the former territories of the GDR historically more closely linked with Russia than the economy of the West country.

Additionally, Kampfner indicates a well-known former functionaries of the leading parties of Germany, like the former Minister of foreign Affairs Sigmar Gabriel (SPD), who shortly after retiring from the Federal government managed to speak at the influential German-Russian forum. The Chairman of the forum, Matthias Platzeck, former Prime Minister of Brandenburg.

For China, Germany is a key partner

China seems a long way from Germany country. Geographically it is undoubtedly so. But economically it is no longer so. While Russia does not even appear in the “top ten” German commercial partners, 2019, China last year became trade partner number 1.

And in political terms, China is also flexing its muscles — is obvious, at least, with the coming to power of a confident head of state XI Jinping. China is not particularly hide his desire by mid-century, economically and politically to overthrow the pedestal of the USA as leading world power.

For China, Germany is a country with which the regime wants to have as good relations. Conversely, the Federal government is aware of the economic importance of China, and, apparently, therefore it has a low profile in the explosive conflict around Hong Kong.

Kampfner, among other vulnerabilities, points to two weaknesses of Germany, on which China can play. First, we are talking about innovative German technology companies that purchase Chinese investors, of course, not without support from Beijing. He calls the manufacturer of robotics from Augsburg. A company called KUKA (Kuka), and it is still in 2016, took control of the Chinese company Midea. After that, the German government has complicated the process of acquisitions by investors from third countries.

Secondly, we are talking about Chinese investment in stalled the German production site. Kampfner calls, for example, Duisburg. The unemployment rate in the city is more than twice the national average, writes the author. While Duisburg’s strategic location, at the confluence of the Rhine and its tributary the river Ruhr. Here is Europe’s largest inland port düsseldorf airport is just a 20-minute drive away. In Duisburg would have to end the project of the century China’s “New silk road”.

China has resorted to the tactics of the Russian

Like Russia, China uses communication at the local level in order to get influence in Germany. These are the channels to power that can be used, bypassing the critical views of national politicians, says Kampfner. Duisburg welcomed Chinese investment. Including the mayor of Duisburg.

While Merkel remains Chancellor in policy towards Russia and China, fundamental changes can be expected. In this no doubt, and expert Kampfner. Even in the era of trump remains true to the principle that Germany will always be on major political and economic parameters closer to the US than to the authoritarian regimes of China and Russia. And the Federal government knows the benefits of the Western Alliance. But what will come after Merkel?

Three factors essentially determine the policy of Germany. First, the U.S. presidential election in November. Secondly, the choice of candidate for Chancellor of the CDU and CSU not later than the beginning of 2021, the year. And third, following the elections to the Bundestag, which presumably will take place in fall 2021. “Do not be an exaggeration to say that the future of European and Western stability depends on all three factors”, — said Kampfner.