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Sigmar Gabriel

utanríkisráðherra Þýzkalands er í athyglisverðu viðtali við "der Spiegel" um alvöru þess ef Bandaríkin hætta í hlutverki alþjóðalögreglunnar sem þeir hafa gengt undanfarna áratugi. Evrópa getur ekki varið sig ein gegn ágangi Rúsaa og Kínverja.

Þessvegna liggur í orðum Gabriels að treysta verður samband Evrópu við Bandaríkin eigi ekki illa að fara. En einmitt hefur andróður gegn þáttöku í NATÓ meðal Evrópuríkja af hálfu kratiskra elementa og afleidd tregða Evrópuríkja að uppfylla skyldur sínar gagnvart NATÓ hleypt illu blóði í Trump Bandaríkjaforseta vegna þeirrar ósanngirni Evrópuríkjanna að velta meiri varnarbyrðum af sér á Bandaríkin. 

Viðtalið er hér:

DER SPIEGEL: Mr. Gabriel, let's get the new year started with a couple of predictions. If you were to imagine a German foreign policy in 2028, what would it look like?

Gabriel: I hope that it will be part of a European foreign policy, because even the strong country of Germany won't really have a voice in the world if it is not part of a European voice.

DER SPIEGEL: What will the core issues of this European foreign policy be?

Gabriel: It is clear that we need a foreign policy in which we jointly define European interests. Thus far, we have often defined European values, but we have been much too weak in defining mutual interests. To preempt any possible misunderstandings: We cannot give short shrift to our values of freedom, democracy and human rights. On the contrary. But political scientist Herfried Münkler is right: If you only take normative positions, if your focus is solely on values, you won't find success in a world where others are relentlessly pursuing their interests. In a world full of meat-eaters, vegetarians have a tough time.

DER SPIEGEL: This political toughness is something Germany still hasn't learned.

Gabriel: In the past, we could rely on the French, the British and, especially, the Americans, to assert our interests in the world. We have always criticized the U.S. for being the global police, and it was often appropriate to do so. But we are now seeing what happens when the U.S. pulls back. There is no such thing as a vacuum in international politics. If the U.S. leaves the room, other powers immediately walk in. In Syria, it's Russia and Iran. In trade policy, it's China. These examples show that, ultimately, we are no longer achieving either -- neither the dissemination of our European values nor the advancement of our interests.

DER SPIEGEL: Are you actually certain that the U.S. still feels bound to NATO's collective defense principles as outlined in Article 5 of the alliance treaty?

Gabriel: We are pleased that Donald Trump and the U.S. have affirmed Article 5, but we should not test that trust too much. At the same time, Europe could not defend itself without the U.S., even if European structures were strengthened.

DER SPIEGEL: How do you view Germany's role in the world today?

Gabriel: We are a place many dream about today in the way the U.S. was a place all those looking for freedom, prosperity and democracy dreamed about from the 18th to the 20th century.

DER SPIEGEL: Do you mean Germany specifically or are you referring to Europe as a whole?

Gabriel: Surely the European Union as a whole stands for these dreams. But Germany, especially, because of its economic strength. Also because of its pacifism. When you think back today to a time more than 70 years ago when we were a terrible place, a place people were afraid of, it is a wonderful development that we have gone from being a terrible place to a place that people dream of.

DER SPIEGEL: You're describing a rather overly-idyllic present day.

Gabriel: I am also aware that it isn't easy for everyone in Germany to make ends meet through well-paid work in Germany. You have to have sufficient skills and work hard. And I also know that we have much too much poverty and inequality here. Still, our parents and grandparents built an incredibly prosperous and peaceful country. One shouldn't, of course, play down the degree to which this is dependent on our economic strength. The truth is that Moscow, Beijing and Washington have one thing in common: They don't value the European Union at all. They disregard it."

Ég held að Íslendingum sé hollt að velta afstöðu sinni til NATÓ fyrir sér. Evrópusambandið kemur ekki í stað þessa bandalags og Bandaríkjanna ef við hugleiðum orð Sigmars Gabriels?

 


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Halldór Jónsson
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