Saturday

3rd Dec 2022

Germany against new American world order

German foreign minister Joschka Fischer said on Monday that his country is against a new world order after the war in Iraq where the United States would run the international community.

In an interview with Der Spiegel, Mr Fischer said: "A world order in which the superpower decides on military strikes only according to its own national interest cannot work."

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"I cannot and do not want to imagine that we stand before a whole series of disarmament wars," he said with reference to fears that the US administration would now unilaterally set the world agenda, after failing to secure the UN route for the Iraq conflict.

"In the end the same rules must apply for the big, middle-sized and small countries," he stressed.

No real influence on Washington

Referring to Spain and the UK, the US' strongest EU allies, the German foreign minister questioned whether they had any real influence in Washington's decision to start a military conflict.

"The important question is whether those countries which are now close allies of the USA have or had any influence at all."

London and Madrid are also likely to be irritated by his comments that by deciding to continue supporting US President George W. Bush, despite the huge anti-war sentiment in their countries, they had caused "major problems that bordered on the destabilisation of democratic systems."

Different histories

One of the major reasons for the existing transatlantic differences is the different histories experienced by Americans and Europeans.

"Whoever is familiar with European history knows about the many wars here. In the USA there is nothing to compare with Auschwitz or Stalingrad or the other terrible symbolic locations in our history."

Mr Fischer pleaded the case for the UN, which many have seen as being irreparably damaged in the lead up to the Iraqi war.

"I do not know, either in political theory or practice, a serious alternative [to the UN]."

Joschka Fischer has not given up a European foreign minister either. This person is "more necessary than ever" and would combine the roles of the High Representative for common foreign and security policy and the external relations commissioner.

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