A trade war with Russia started. There will be no dead or wounded. Only bankruptcies and financial losses. Yet a trade war is still a war. Whoever starts a military campaign should have the answers to two questions: what the objective is and what the exit strategy is. But the Brussels commanders have no answers, writes Jakob Augstein, columnist of a German weekly Der Spiegel.
In the conflict over the Ukraine, the West indulged in an expensive rhetoric and the payment is due now. Financial markets, the defense sector, the high-tech are all affected. What was once political symbolism became economic and political warfare now. One must not forget: whoever sets an ultimatum binds not only the opponent, but himself too, remarks Augstein.
The German journalist reminds that more than 6,000 German companies are present in the Russian market and more than 300,000 German jobs depend on the trade between the two countries. "How far are we willing to go to fight Putin?" he asks.
According to the author, the tightening of the sanctions (he calls them "lunatics sanctions") puts the West on the course to escalating the confrontation which will be hard to abandon. Besides, it is unlikely that Europe will be able to impose its will on Vladimir Putin. On the contrary, the chances are high that the EU attack (and that is how the sanctions are perceived in Russia) will strengthen Putin as never before. “As history shows, it is hard to win against Russia. Obviously Brussels is unaware of it, but Berlin must know,” stresses Augstein.
Then the author turns to the German media. He believes that Western publications are blinded by their hatred to Russia. They even try to explain the results of polls, showing that 83% of Russians support their president, by claiming that Russians live in their own world and have lost all sense of reality: "they lie between birches, immersed in a deep sleep," and "the goblin Putin lulls them" telling tales "of the Eurasian empire."
From the beginning of the Ukrainian crisis, German media unanimously pushed Berlin to tougher actions, continues Augstein. The German government had to constantly explain and justify the reasons for its restraint. But after the crash of the Malaysian Boeing 777, there was no stopping the journalists. "The situation is this: more than 200 EU citizens were killed. Europe can no longer shy away," wrote the S?ddeutsche Zeitung. And now the press reports with delight that the EU has “finally” decided to punish Russia. "In the summer of 2014, our journalists had their own August experience" writes the columnist, referring to the surge of patriotism among the masses in the German Empire in August of 1914 due to the outbreak of the World War I.
In conclusion, the author turns to history. It is not the first time that Germany imposes tough economic sanctions on Russia. In 1887, Otto von Bismarck introduced the “pawn ban”, which blocked the access to German capital market for Russia. A year later, his son Herbert tried to remedy the situation by saying to the Russian Foreign Minister that economic and political relations should not depend on each other. But it was too late. The French occupied the niche that once was German. In 1891, French warships arrived in Kronstadt. Tsar Alexander III took off his hat during the performance of the Marseillaise (the French national anthem). A little later, he signed a secret military treaty with France. Before long it was 1914. "We know to whom Russia will turn this time" concludes Augstein.
СБУ задержала американку из Russia TodayПолитика
Задержанный на Украине журналист ANNA News освободженОбщество
МОЛНИЯ!!! В плен взяты оператор ANNA-News и стрингер Russia TodayПолитика
Журналист Russia Today в Лондоне увольняется из-за сюжетов каналаОбщество
"В RT есть правило во всем обвинять Украину"Общество
Украина: Анну Герман уличили в связях с КГБПолитика
Украинские БТРы обстреляли журналистов телеканала Russia TodayПроисшествия
Лавров назвал высказывания Керри о Russia Today некультурнымиПолитика
Немецкая GSG презентует новый карабин GSG-Mp40Вооруженные силы мира
Меркель едет в Афины: демонстрации запрещеныПолитика
Бизнесмены РФ стали прохладно относиться к партнерам в ФРГЭкономика
YouTube заблокировал аккаунт телеканала Russia TodayОбщество
Племянник Путина запустил компанию Putin ConsultingЭкономика
Депутаты Рады: Виктор Янукович подал в отставкуПолитика
СМИ: как Лукашенко заискивал перед Путиным в СочиПолитика
Russia Today оценил жизнь израильтянина в палестинцахОбщество
Аккаунт Russia Today заблокирован на сайте RedditПолитика
Иван Охлобыстин рассказал, как возлюбить ближнего своегоНовости мира / Новости культуры
Жители Триполи праздновали в субботу годовщину со дня гибели МуаммараНовости мира
Москва считает шпионский скандал в США реакцией на успехи России вНовости мира