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In 100th Anniversary of WWI, a New War Was Started in Europe

1) German foreign minister Steinmeier agitates for war (Ulrich Rippert / WSWS 20 June 2014)
2) Das finnische Modell. Berliner Regierungsberater plädieren im Machtkampf des Westens gegen Russland für eine enge militärische Anbindung der Ukraine an das westliche Kriegsbündnis… (GFP 05.06.2014)
3) For Peace and Freedom. German foreign policy experts are expressing their approval of Kiev's putsch regime's recent escalation of warfare against the East of Ukraine… (GFP 2014/05/30)
4) New Debate on the Responsibility for War. In the few months leading up to the one-hundredth anniversary of the beginning of World War I, a new debate, over who was responsible for starting the war, is gaining momentum in Germany… (GFP 2014/02/04)
5) Germany started the Great War, but the Left can’t bear to say so. By Boris Johnson (Major of London), 6 Jan 2014
6) Risoluzione sulla prima guerra mondiale / Resolution on WWI by German Communist Party, Communist Party of Luxembourg and Workers’ Party of Belgium (EN, DE, FR, IT)


14-18 : « On croit mourir pour la Patrie, on meurt pour des industriels »
Michel Collon mène l’enquête avec trois historiens : Jacques Pauwels, Anne Morelli et Lucas Catherine. 
VIDEO: http://michelcollon.info/14-18-On-croit-mourir-pour-la.html
ou http://vimeo.com/99236165
Akteure zweiter Klasse (Einbindung von Nicht-Mitgliedstaaten in die EU-Militärpolitik)
GFP 26.06.2014 - Die EU treibt auf ihrem heute beginnenden Gipfeltreffen die Einbindung von Nicht-Mitgliedstaaten in ihre globale Außen- und Militärpolitik voran. Die Assoziierungsabkommen mit Georgien, Moldawien und der Ukraine, die auf dem EU-Gipfel unterzeichnet werden sollen, sehen die allmähliche Anpassung der Vertragspartner an die Brüsseler Außen- und Militärpolitik vor… 
Second-Class Stakeholders (EU association and integration of non-member countries in military policy)
GFP 26.06.2014 - At its summit, starting today, the EU is pushing ahead to integrate non-member countries into its global foreign and military policies…
Analyse: Dilemmes moraux et promesses non tenues. Panorama historico-philosophique du mouvement non violent. Gandhi voyait en 14 - 18 un « test de virilité »
Domenico Losurdo - 4 septembre 2013
ou http://www.michelcollon.info/Gandhi-voyait-en-14-18-un-test-de.html

=== 1 ===


German foreign minister Steinmeier agitates for war

By Ulrich Rippert 
20 June 2014

The 100th anniversary of August 4, 1914—the disastrous day on which the SPD (Social Democratic Party) faction voted in the Reichstag for the Kaiser’s war credits to finance World War I—is only weeks away. The SPD is preparing for the anniversary by pressing for renewed German militarism.

At the end of May, Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier (SPD) opened a new web site for the foreign office with the title “Review 2014—Rethinking foreign policy.” The goal of the site is to combat long-standing public opposition to war and militarism.

With the support of the German federal government and the president, Steinmeier declared at the beginning of this year that the country’s previous policy of military restraint was at an end. In the future, Germany would intervene independently, “including militarily,” in crisis regions around the world. The foreign minister justified this by saying that Germany was “too big and too important” to limit itself “to merely commenting from the sidelines of world politics.”

Although this return of an aggressive German foreign policy underwent long and intensive preparation and was supported by all parties in the Bundestag as well as practically the entire media, it has met with the opposition and hostility by the majority of the population.

That is now supposed to change.

With the words “Allow us all to think further about foreign policy,” Steinmeier presses on the new web site for a foreign policy change. However, the mistrust and rejection of militarism and war are deep-seated. The despicable crimes of the Nazis and the Wehrmacht have embedded themselves deeply into the consciousness of broad layers of the population. The demands “No more war! No more fascism!” have shaped generations.

Steinmeier’s reaction to these sentiments leaves no room for doubt that from the point of view of the foreign ministry and the chancellor’s office the return of great power politics is a settled matter. At the same time, he is attempting to create the impression that it is not the German government and business interests that are pushing for great power politics and militarism, but rather that voices outside Germany are demanding “more leadership.” To this end, he has commissioned several dozen foreign “experts” to produce articles and assessments.

The advertisement for “Review 2014” claims: “For this web site we asked 50 renowned experts: ‘What, if anything, is wrong with German foreign policy? What must be changed?’ ”

In this regard, it should not be overlooked that these “renowned experts” in one or another way are dependent on and are paid by the foreign ministry. The form and content of their assessments clearly correspond with this dependence. Politicians, scientists, journalists and many countries all demand that Germany give up its cautious stance and take on a greater “leadership role” in security and military matters.

The demand for a German leadership role in Europe and the world has never been so shamelessly and forcefully raised in an official publication of the foreign ministry since the end of Hitler’s “Führerstaat” approximately 70 years ago.

Timothy Garton Ash, professor for European Studies at the University of Oxford, demands Germany take on a “greater leadership role” in the European Union (EU). Thomas Risse, head of the Working Group on Transnational Relations, Foreign and Security Policy at the Free University of Berlin, writes in an article entitled “German as a leading power” that the Berlin government must live up to its European leadership responsibility.

Volker Perthes, director of the Foundation for Science and Politics (SWP), which played a central role in the preparation of the change in foreign policy, emphasises, “Leadership depends on trust!” Perthes adds, “Foreign observers praise the professionalism of the German Foreign Service, but repeatedly complain that Germany plays too small of a role in international affairs—or otherwise promotes its own economic interests—and shies away from responsibility as well as leadership or shared leadership.” In another article, Perthes states, “Leadership means setting priorities.”

Kishore Mahbubani, a professor of political science at the National University of Singapore, was the clearest. He entitled his article “Germany’s destiny: leading Europe in order to lead the world.”

Nazi propaganda defined the character of Germany in a similar manner: “Today German belongs to us—tomorrow the entire world!” is part of the text of an infamous Nazi song.

Professor Mahbubani does not contest this. He declares that Merkel’s “European crisis management” has made Germany’s leading role in Europe unmistakably clear. “France and Great Britain can no longer fulfill this role,” he writes.

Professor Mahbubani does not worry about the fact that Germany committed unspeakable crimes in the previous century. Instead, he deplores the fact that it lost two world wars and he now wants to correct this.

He writes: “The twentieth century was a bad one for Germany. It lost two world wars and was divided and occupied.” The second half of the century was indeed better and brought Germany peace and prosperity. However, German society is “psychologically ill” with feelings of guilt about its past. This guilt complex must be overcome so that the twenty-first century “can become a great century for Germany.”

Steinmeier uses these remarks as justification for declaring that “foreign lands” have placed “great expectations” on German foreign policy. German politics should no longer ignore the cherished hopes and expectations “of our friends”.

With respect to the opening of the conference “Review 2014—Rethinking foreign policy” on May 20 in the foreign office’s “world hall steeped in history,” Steinmeier made it clear he wants to overcome the contradiction between “the great expectations placed on German foreign policy by foreign lands” and the ongoing opposition to a stronger stance on the part of the German population.

He says, “At the time I assumed office for the second time a half a year ago, I formulated a thesis in this world hall: Germany is somewhat too big and economically too strong for us to merely comment on world politics from the sidelines.” Now, he intends to explain and impose Germany’s new role in the world.

To this end, Steinmeier has planned numerous events over the course of the whole summer. He will no longer tolerate the public resistance to the return of militarism and war. For Steinmeier, democracy does not mean accepting the view of the majority and then acting. For him, a government that is “democratically legitimated by elections” has the task of defining German interests and imposing them against all opposition. It is the voice of the ruling finance oligarchy that tolerates no contradiction.

In the federal election of last autumn, this foreign policy turn was not introduced into the discussion, although it had been prepared for a long time in think tanks and ruling circles. Instead, all possible political issues of secondary importance were endlessly discussed, from gay marriage to a highway toll.

A few days after the election, President Gauck demanded that Germany once again play a role “in Europe and in the world” that corresponded with its actual influence. This was made a central theme of the coalition negotiations, and now the coalition is driving forward to resurrect German militarism.

Steinmeier is a typical Social Democratic representative of the state, who works on behalf of economic interests and the financial oligarchy, and views the population as an enemy. Symptomatic of this attitude was his angry outburst at an election meeting in Berlin, at which he shouted down his critics who had called him a “warmonger.”

Steinmeier cried, “You have no right!” and meant it literally. In an interview published in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung shortly after the European election, he called for the maintenance of an electoral threshold for small parties designed to maintain the dictatorship of the already established political parties.

A hundred years after the great betrayal by the SPD in August 1914, the Social Democrats have become the leading party of German imperialism and spout war propaganda on behalf of German militarism. Only one thing has changed: the SPD long ago lost its influence over the working class. The hostility between the Social Democrats and the workers is mutual.

=== 2 ===
In english: The Finnish Model
In the West's hegemonic struggle against Russia, German government advisers are calling for close military ties between Ukraine and the Western war alliance…
GFP 2014/06/05

Das finnische Modell
(Eigener Bericht) - Berliner Regierungsberater plädieren im Machtkampf des Westens gegen Russland für eine enge militärische Anbindung der Ukraine an das westliche Kriegsbündnis. Zwar sei die direkte Aufnahme des Landes in die NATO kontraproduktiv und solle nicht angestrebt werden, heißt es in einem aktuellen Papier der Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik (SWP). Das stehe jedoch einer Intensivierung der Kooperation, gemeinsamen Kriegsübungen und perspektivisch auch einer Aufrüstung des Landes an der Seite des Westens nicht entgegen. Für die Zukunft schlägt das SWP-Papier für die Ukraine ein "finnisches Modell" vor: Finnland gehöre offiziell keinem Militärbündnis an, sei aber eng an die NATO angebunden und praktisch Teil des Westens; in ähnlicher Weise könne auch Kiew formelle "Bündnisfreiheit" mit enger Partnerschaft mit der NATO verbinden. Auch im Mainstream der US-Außenpolitik wird die Auffassung geteilt, ein NATO-Beitritt der Ukraine sei zu riskant; er könne das Land endgültig in den Abgrund treiben und die östlichen Mitgliedstaaten des Kriegsbündnisses langfristig schwer belasten. Die Pläne zu einer engeren Zusammenarbeit der NATO mit der Ukraine gehen mit zunehmenden militärischen Aktivitäten in den osteuropäischen NATO-Staaten einher.
Die Beitrittsdebatte
In der aktuellen Debatte um militärische und militärpolitische Aktivitäten im Machtkampf gegen Russland meldet sich die Berliner Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik (SWP) zu Wort. Im Zentrum steht dabei die Frage, wie die Zusammenarbeit der NATO mit der Ukraine künftig zu gestalten sei. Hintergrund sind Plädoyers aus Kiew, aber auch aus ultrarechten Teilen des US-amerikanischen Establishments sowie aus transatlantisch orientierten Segmenten der deutschen Öffentlichkeit, das Land so rasch wie möglich in das westliche Kriegsbündnis aufzunehmen.
"Nicht jetzt"
Vor einem solchen Schritt warnt die SWP. Zwar klinge "der Gedanke ... verführerisch, als Reaktion auf das russische Vorgehen auf der Krim und in der Ostukraine die Option einer Vollmitgliedschaft drer Ukraine in der Nato wiederzubeleben", heißt es in einer aktuellen Stellungnahme aus dem Think-Tank. Doch zum einen werde Moskau dies "als bewusstes Eskalieren wahrnehmen" und vermutlich jegliche Kooperation zur Befriedung der Ukraine einstellen. Zum anderen sei zu befürchten, dass ein NATO-Beitritt die "politische Polarisierung der ukrainischen Gesellschaft weiter forciert". Mit Blick auf die Gefahr, in unmittelbarer Nachbarschaft zur EU und zum NATO-Bündnisgebiet könne sich ein langwieriger Konflikt, womöglich ein Bürgerkrieg festsetzen und auch deutsche Kräfte in spürbarem Maße binden, rät die SWP, "die Option einer Vollmitgliedschaft der Ukraine in der Nato im Moment (!) nicht aktiv zu verfolgen".[1] Ähnliches ist aus dem Mainstream der US-Außenpolitik zu hören. So weist der Congressional Research Service aus Washington explizit darauf hin, dass laut einer Umfrage vom März 2014 nur 34 Prozent der ukrainischen Bevölkerung für einen NATO-Beitritt des Landes plädieren, während 44 Prozent dagegen sind; Befürworter gibt es vor allem im Westen der Ukraine, Gegner in ihrem Osten.[2] Eine Debatte über den Beitritt wäre demnach - jedenfalls gegenwärtig - tatsächlich geeignet, das Land weiter zu spalten und in den Abgrund zu treiben und deutsch-europäische Kräfte zu binden.
"Kein Weg erkennbar"
Entsprechend positioniert sich die Bundesregierung bislang gegen jegliche NATO-Erweiterungspläne. Nach Äußerungen von NATO-Generalsekretär Anders Fogh Rasmussen, das Kriegsbündnis könne künftig weitere Staaten aufnehmen, erklärte Außenminister Frank-Walter Steinmeier Anfang April: "Einen Weg (der Ukraine) in die Mitgliedschaft in der Nato sehe ich nicht."[3] Ähnliches hat sich kürzlich mit Blick auf Georgien wiederholt. Während Rasmussen verlauten lässt, "die Tür" für das südkaukasische Land bleibe "offen", hat Bundeskanzlerin Angela Merkel zu Beginn dieser Woche mitgeteilt, ihrer Auffassung nach sei der NATO-Beitritt des Landes "kein Tagesordnungspunkt für den nächsten Nato-Gipfel" im September. Auf dem Gipfel solle vielmehr diskutiert werden, "wie wir deutlich machen können, dass Georgien ein guter Partner ... ist" - auch ohne Beitrittsprozess.[4]
Partnerschaft Plus
Dass der - zumindest vorläufige - Verzicht auf die formelle Aufnahme der Ukraine und Georgiens allerdings keinen Verzicht auf ihre enge Anbindung an die NATO bedeutet, lässt ebenfalls die aktuelle Stellungnahme aus der SWP erkennen. Demnach müsse man sich zwar zunächst mit der unmittelbaren Gefahr befassen, "dass die Ukraine weitere Teile ihres Territoriums ... verliert, das staatliche Gewaltmonopol noch stärker erodiert oder das Land in einen Bürgerkrieg versinkt". "Ein solches Szenario" hätte fatale Folgen für die "vier Nachbarländer der Ukraine, die Mitglieder der nordatlantischen Allianz sind: Polen, Slowakei, Ungarn und Rumänien"; "mittelbar" wäre auch die NATO als Ganzes betroffen, heißt es bei der SWP. "Langfristig" aber werde es darum gehen, "der Ukraine eine stabile sicherheitspolitische Verankerung zu bieten". Weil der NATO-Beitritt jedoch riskant sei, könne man ein "Partnerschaft-Plus-Format" anstreben: Das Kriegsbündnis solle etwa "Reformen des Verteidigungssektors" der Ukraine "unterstützen sowie auf politische und finanzielle Weichenstellungen drängen, die zum Aufbau effektiver Streitkräfte notwendig sind"; auch sollten "gemeinsame Manöver, die Unterstützung bei der Ausbildung der ukrainischen Streitkräfte und der Zugang zu modernen Defensivwaffen-Systemen ... das Hilfspaket ergänzen".[5]
Nur formell neutral
Die Gesamtperspektive für die Ukraine beschreibt die SWP als "finnisches Modell". Dabei bezieht sie sich auf die traditionelle finnische Neutralität. "Zwar gehört Finnland nach wie vor keinem Militärbündnis an, ist aber politisch nicht neutral", heißt es mit Blick auf die Entwicklung des Landes seit dem Ende der Systemkonfrontation: "An seiner sicherheitspolitischen Orientierung bzw. 'Westbindung' hat es in den letzten zwei Jahrzehnten keine Zweifel gelassen". So nehme es etwa "sehr aktiv" am "Partnership for Peace"-Programm der NATO teil und bringe sich in die Außen- und Militärpolitik der EU ein; vor allem kooperiere es militärisch mit den nordischen NATO-Mitgliedern Dänemark, Norwegen und Island. Offiziell neutral, faktisch Teil des Westens - dies sei ein geeignetes Modell auch für die Ukraine: "Die Fortführung der Bündnisfreiheit, die vertiefte Kooperation mit Nato-Mitgliedern und eine klare politische Westorientierung Kiews könnten auch die drei maßgeblichen Pfeiler der zukünftigen ukrainischen Sicherheitspolitik sein."[6]
Eine Nebelwand
Der Linie, die Ausdehnung ihrer militärischen Aktivitäten in Richtung Osten nicht durch allzu provokante Schritte zu gefährden, sondern sie mit Umsicht voranzutreiben, folgen die NATO-Hauptmächte auch bei der Ausweitung ihrer militärischen Aktivitäten in den osteuropäischen Mitgliedstaaten, etwa in den baltischen Staaten und Polen. So hat US-Präsident Barack Obama bei seinem Besuch in Warschau vor martialischer Kulisse (F-16-Kampfjets) posiert und die imposante Summe von einer Milliarde US-Dollar für den Ausbau der US-Militärpräsenz in Ost- und Südosteuropa in Aussicht gestellt, um das polnische Publikum zufriedenzustellen. Doch vermerken Beobachter, Obama habe ein Element vermieden, das Warschau energisch verlange, das Moskau aber wohl ähnlich wie ein etwaiger NATO-Beitritt der Ukraine zu drastischen Reaktionen zwingen würde - die Zusage einer dauerhaften Stationierung von NATO-Truppen in Polen. Der Westen hatte Moskau zunächst - während der Umbrüche des Jahres 1990 - mündlich und 1997 auch vertraglich zugesagt, keine NATO-Truppen in relevantem Umfang dauerhaft in Osteuropa zu stationieren, um Russland keiner existenziellen militärischen Bedrohung auszusetzen. Die US-Militärs, die die Obama-Administration jetzt beispielsweise nach Polen verlegen lassen will, sind dort dementsprechend offiziell nicht fest stationiert, sondern "rotieren". Ein polnischer Hardliner, der sich dafür ausspricht, NATO-Stützpunkte dauerhaft nach Polen zu verlegen, hat daher den martialischen Auftritt des US-Präsidenten eine "Nebelwand" genannt.[7]
Flexibel, nicht permanent
Ähnlich wie Washington positioniert sich auch Berlin. "Es ist wichtig, dass wir die Rückversicherung unserer östlichen Partner so gestalten, dass wir multinational, aber rotierend und flexibel, ... nicht statisch, nicht permanent ... anwesend sein werden", wird Bundesverteidigungsministerin Ursula von der Leyen zitiert.[8] Ähnlich wie die Anbindung der Ukraine an das westliche Kriegsbündnis ohne ihren offiziellen Beitritt scheint das Vorgehen der NATO-Staaten auch in diesem Falle geeignet, ihre militärischen Aktivitäten unter Vermeidung russischer Abwehrreaktionen deutlich nach Osten auszuweiten.
[1] Markus Kaim: Partnerschaft Plus: Zur Zukunft der NATO-Ukraine-Beziehungen. SWP-Aktuell 38, Mai 2014.
[2] Congressional Research Service: NATO: Response to the Crisis in Ukraine and Security Concerns in Central and Eastern Europe. April 16, 2014.
[3] Steinmeier sieht keinen Weg der Ukraine in die Nato. www.faz.net 01.04.2014.
[4] Pressekonferenz von Bundeskanzlerin Merkel und dem Ministerpräsidenten Garibaschwili am 2. Juni 2014 in Berlin.
[5], [6] Markus Kaim: Partnerschaft Plus: Zur Zukunft der NATO-Ukraine-Beziehungen. SWP-Aktuell 38, Mai 2014.
[7] Peter Baker, Rick Lyman: Obama, in Poland, Renews Commitment to Security. www.nytimes.com 03.06.2014.
[8] Von der Leyen lehnt ständige Nato-Truppen in Osteuropa ab. www.zeit.de 03.06.2014.
=== 3 ===
Auf Deutsch: Für Frieden und Freiheit
Deutsche Außenpolitiker äußern sich zustimmend zur jüngsten Eskalation der Kriegshandlungen in der Ostukraine durch das Kiewer Umsturzregime.
GFP 30.05.2014
For Peace and Freedom
(Own report) - German foreign policy experts are expressing their approval of Kiev's putsch regime's recent escalation of warfare against the East of Ukraine. It is "evident" that "Kiev … had to again become active," declared the influential diplomat and Chairman of the Munich Security Conference, Wolfgang Ischinger. Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk, whose regime bears responsibility for the current artillery and aerial attacks on eastern Ukrainian cities, was guest speaker at yesterday's Charlemagne Prize award presentation ceremonies. The German media praised him accordingly. The Ukrainian President-elect, the Oligarch Petro Poroshenko, would like to lead Kiev into a "security alliance" with the West and soon sign the economic segment of the EU's Association Agreement. Ukraine has already begun the necessary preparations: Austerity measures, which will massively increase the unemployment rate and entail a dramatic rise in prices, have been initiated. German business circles are preparing for their economic expansion into that country. If Kiev can take control over eastern Ukraine with military means, new conflicts could arise: The interests of the expanding German industry would collide with those of Ukrainian oligarchs.
By All Means
Kiev's Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk has attracted public attention with his participation in yesterday's award presentation ceremonies of the Charlemagne Prize to the President of the European Council, Herman van Rompuy. In his short speech, he declared that Kiev will fight "for peace and freedom" against the rebellions in the East of the country - "with all means at our disposal."[1] On the eve of the ceremony, he conferred in Berlin with the German chancellor on the next steps in the struggle for influence with Moscow. President-elect Petro Poroshenko announced that Kiev seeks to strengthen its formal ties with the West. After initial resistance, Kiev now is signaling that the signing of the economic segment of the EU's Association Agreement is imminent - still in June. Only the political segment is currently in force. Poroshenko has also announced that he is counting on a "new security alliance with the USA and Europe to also militarily protect the Ukraine." He intends to "fight for this and immediately open talks."[2] He has had "intensive phone conversations" with Chancellor Merkel and is now hoping "for more solidarity and support."[3]
Saving up for Free Trade and War
Immediately following the putsch in late February, the Ukrainian putsch regime began initiating economic preparations for the country's transition into the western hegemonic sphere. As usual in such cases,[4] this process means the imposition of harsh austerity policies. An agreement has already been reached with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to apply its clearly defined austerity measures. Therefore Kiev has abandoned the previous government's plans to slightly raise pensions and the minimum wage (approx. 45 cents/hr) and will now freeze both at current levels. The parliament decided already back in March, to reduce the national budget by 17 percent. Altogether, about 24,000 civil service employees will be fired, accounting for ten percent of all civil servants. In a "letter of intent" to the IMF, dated April 22, Kiev also agreed to increase - before the summer - the price of gas for private households by 56 percent as well as the costs for district heating by 40 percent. This will be a heavy blow to a large portion of the Ukrainian population, whose average earnings - when the oligarch's wealth is deducted - are estimated at about 150 Euros monthly. In 2015, gas and heating costs will be raised another 40 percent and again in 2016 and 2017, another 20 percent each year. The war against the insurgents in the east of the country, which is consuming large sums, has not yet even been calculated into these plans. Minister of Finances, Oleksandr Shlapak, announced May 10, that Kiev's military budget will probably have to be increased by 50 percent, for the time being, and this amount is still not enough. Therefore, Ukraine must cut its budget for social issues and healthcare.[5]
Lucrative Modernization
In anticipation of the imminent signing of the economic segment of the EU's Association Agreement, the austerity policy has begun provoking tangible interest in German economic sectors. "The adoption of EU standards and the establishment of a free trade zone with the European Union, will demand ... a multiplicity of immense efforts in modernization for Ukrainian enterprises," according to "Germany Trade and Invest" (gtai). For example, the steel industry, which "is very important to Ukraine," has "much catching up to do, in the use of modern technology."[6] German companies are hoping to land lucrative contracts. This sector also has political significance. As in many other branches, Ukrainian oligarchs, such as Rinat Achmetov, exercise an enormous amount of influence over the steel industry. It is unknown, whether Achmetov - who may have to make expensive modernization investments - can expect concessions for his announcement to regain control over eastern Ukraine.[7] From within the entourage of President-elect Poroshenko, there is talk of a "German aid program for the Donbass," that is supposed to "create jobs."[8] Gtai also sees opportunities for German enterprises in the impending modernization of Ukraine's agriculture, where Ukrainian oligarchs are also influential.
Low-Wage Site
According to the gtai analysis, the imminent signing of the economic segment of the EU's Association Agreement will make large-scale transplantation of industrial sites also feasible. For example, "a foreign automobile producer could proliferate its locations in Ukraine and establish a cluster of subcontractors," writes the foreign trade agency. The country could even, "step by step, become a second Czech Republic," thanks to its exceptionally low wage level ("labor cost advantages"), particularly due to the fact that Ukraine has a "relatively well trained labor force." Gtai points out that various German automotive components suppliers - such as Leoni - are already producing inside the country. However, Ukrainian auto manufacturers must "then convert to the production of component parts or niche products such as customized autos or infrastructures."[9] It is not clear what form the confrontation will take between the giants of the West European auto industry, on the one hand, and the Ukrainian oligarchs, on the other. For example, one of the largest car manufacturers in Ukraine is privately owned by the billionaire Petro Poroshenko.[10] Poroshenko has announced his intentions to sell his companies - with the exception of his "Channel 5" broadcasting company - but it is not clear, who will take over his "Bohdan Corporation" car factories.
"Finally Retaliate"
Whereas the protégée of the CDU-affiliated Konrad Adenauer Foundation [11], Kiev's future mayor, Vitali Klitschko, has announced that he will now "seek German investments very intensively,"[12] his political ally, Petro Poroshenko, is applying the final measures for the absorption of all of Ukraine into the Western hegemonic sphere - by repressing revolts in the east of the country. This week, using its newly formed "national guard," irregular militias and the air force, Kiev's regime massively expanded attacks on the cities of Donbass. Before elections, "they had shied away from fighting, to not endanger voting," an "insider" was quoted saying, "now we can finally retaliate."[13] German foreign policy experts are expressing their comprehension. "It was evident that Kiev had to again become active, once the elections were over," declared, the Chair of the Munich Security Conference, Wolfgang Ischinger.[14] From Donezk, the first strikes in opposition to Kiev's onslaught have been announced, and violence is also escalating from the side of the insurgents. No end to the fighting is in sight.
War of European Unification
The war beginning in eastern Ukraine will not be the first war to accompany the German-European eastward expansion of their hegemonic sphere. Already in the 1990s, Germany supported the destruction of Yugoslavia, to prevent possible resistance to its predominance. In the summer of 1999, shortly after the war over Kosovo, German media had referred to a "war of European unification." However, at the time, it was reported that "leaders," were referring to this "only in confidential conversations" - otherwise one would have to answer the objection that "war is again being called the mother of all - even Europe."[15]
[1] Van Rompuy wirft Russland Destabilisierung vor. www.handelsblatt.com 29.05.2014.
[2] Das erste Interview mit Klitschko und Poroschenko. www.bild.de 27.05.2014.
[3] So wollen sie der Ukraine Frieden bringen. www.bild.de 29.05.2014.
[4] See Under the EU Flag.
[5] Ukraine cuts health, welfare spending to boost defence. www.janes.com 12.05.2014.
[6] In der Ukraine stehen Modernisierungen an. www.gtai.de 24.04.2014.
[7], [8] See The Restoration of the Oligarchs (IV).
[9] In der Ukraine stehen Modernisierungen an. www.gtai.de 24.04.2014.
[10] See The Restoration of the Oligarchs (IV).
[11] See Our Man in Kiev.
[12] So wollen sie der Ukraine Frieden bringen. www.bild.de 29.05.2014.
[13] Konrad Schuller: Wie aus Partisanenhaufen Stoßtrupps wurden. Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung 28.05.2014.
[14] Ischinger nennt Offensive gegen Separatisten notwendig. www.faz.net 28.05.2014.
[15] Gunter Hofmann: Deutschland am Ende des Krieges. Die Zeit 24/1999.
=== 4 ===
Auf Deutsch: Die neue Kriegsschulddebatte
Wenige Monate vor dem hundertsten Jahrestag des Beginns des Ersten Weltkriegs gewinnt in Deutschland eine neue Debatte um die deutsche Kriegsschuld an Fahrt…
New Debate on the Responsibility for War
(Own report) - In the few months leading up to the one-hundredth anniversary of the beginning of World War I, a new debate, over who was responsible for starting the war, is gaining momentum in Germany. As relevant publications - such as the bestseller, "The Sleepwalkers" by the historian Christopher Clark - show, "a shift in paradigm has taken place" in scholarship, according to a recent press article: "The German Empire was not 'responsible' for World War I." The debate strongly contradicts the recognition that, even though Berlin did not bear it alone, it bore the primary responsibility for the bloody escalation of the 1914 July Crisis. This insight, which was derived particularly from the analyses of the historian Fritz Fischer in the 1960s, is now being massively contested. Historians are strongly criticizing remarks, such as those by Christopher Clark, who, working closely with government-affiliated academic institutions, is denying German responsibility for the war. According to Clark, "the Serbs" are supposedly a priori "the bad guys" of the pre war era, while he openly displays his preference for the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The denial of Germany's main culpability for the war is "balm on the soul of educated social sectors, grown more self-confident" at a time when Berlin's political power is again on the rise.
The Hegemony's "Defensive Goal"
An article published in early January by the German daily "Die Welt" is exemplifies the new debate on the responsibly for setting off World War I. Alluding to relevant publications by Christopher Clark ("The Sleepwalkers") and Herfried Münkler ("Der Große Krieg"), the article states that "a shift in paradigm has already occurred" in historiography, particularly with a re-evaluation of the German Empire's foreign policy. "Driven by fears of decline and encirclement," Berlin simply pursued "the defensive objective" of establishing the "precarious situation of a limited hegemony" over Europe and was "far from making a cocky and megalomaniacal grab for world power." Russia, on the other hand, pursued the war "for its own expansive objectives in Eastern Europe and at the Bosporus." France had been "quite ready to go to war itself," and Great Britain had been "even less peaceful and conciliatory" than is "often assumed." Ultimately, "only when Great Britain entered the war," the "original conflict turned into a global disaster." In any case, Berlin could have claimed a "ius ad bellum" at the time. The authors conclude: "The German Empire was not 'guilty' of starting WWI."[1]
The Otto-von-Bismarck Foundation
The book, "The Sleepwalkers," published in 2012 by the historian Christopher Clark, is central to the new debate on German guilt for starting the war. Clark, who is often ascribed an alleged neutrality with respect to Germany, because he is a native Australian, teaching at a British university, has in fact close ties to state-affiliated German academic institutions. He is a member of the Academic Advisory Board of the German Historical Institute in London, which is supported by the Max Weber Foundation - a Foundation of the German government, under supervision of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. The German foreign ministry is also represented on its Board of Trustees. Clark is also a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the state-financed Otto von Bismarck Foundation, who's Board of Directors and Board of Trustees is mainly comprised of former parliamentarians and Bismarck family members. Only a few years ago, its chair, Rüdiger Kass, had headed the Department of the Federal Police in the Ministry of the Interior. In 2010, Clark received the Historisches Kolleg Award from the hand of the German President. The Historische Kolleg was founded in 1980, essentially with the help of the Deutsche Bank, and today is co-financed by Bavaria.
A Teutonophile
Clark's writing, which investigates the developments leading up to World War I, flatly denying the German Empire's prominent responsibility for starting the war, is quite critically appraised by other historians. Clark, who his colleagues characterize as "a Teutonophile," describes the German Empire at the time of the 1914 July Crisis as the "least militarized European power." "I've never read such a thing before" commented, not without irony, the historian Gerd Krumeich, an expert on the history of World War I. Pointing to serious mistakes in Clark's scholarly analysis, Krumeich confirmed that the book "The Sleepwalkers" is being venerated generally only in Germany, while "abroad" it is "respected but not praised." The fact that Clark flaunts his preference for the Austro-Hungarian Empire, while treating Serbia as well as Russia with open disparagement, is particularly objectionable.[2] He sees "the Serbs" as "the bad guys of the pre-war era, and Austria-Hungary as having had every right to defend itself against them," concluded Krumeich. This has nothing more to do with objective scholarship.[3]
Plagued Employer
Clark's imperial point of view is also apparent in his appreciation of the German Empire's domestic situation. For example, in his 2010 ceremonial address at the reception of the Historisches Kolleg Award, he claimed that the notorious large landowners east of the Elbe would "appear today not so much as 'local tyrants,' but more as employers plagued from all sides, who often had been only able to prevail over a self-confident and resourceful peasantry with utter difficulty." The serf labor, peasants had to fulfill, "would no longer be considered, today, feudal coercion, but rather tenant charges, quasi a rent." Besides, the Prussian peasantry was "not doing too badly" even economically, "as has been alleged earlier." "The Wilhelmine militarism" had merely been "a socially splintered phenomenon," and not so "prevalent in the society, as a whole," as many believed. According to Clark, "the Prussian state apparatus' potential for progress" must, above all, be emphasized - "even in the aftermath of the 1819 conservative turning point."[4] An era of brutal repression of all liberal opposition began in 1819 with the Carlsbad Decrees.
The Function of German Myths
Herfried Münkler, whose work "Der Große Krieg" is also playing an important role in the current debate over responsibility for the war, can also be considered a state-affiliated political scientist. Münkler, who also relativizes Germany's primary guilt for World War I, is reported to be a "one-man think tank." He climbed the ladder from being simply a political science professor at Berlin's Humboldt University to "become one of Berlin's most prominent political advisors," according to a 2003 article. He serves, for example as "a prompter for the Bundeswehr's General Staff, the Foreign Ministry's Policy Planning Staff and also for humanitarian NGOs."[5] It has been reported that during Gerhard Schröder's second electoral period as Chancellor, Münkler was asked by Chief of Staff of the Chancellery, at the time Frank-Walter Steinmeier, to "discuss with the advisory staff" the best spin to make the measures of "Agenda 2010," "more palatable to the government's own clientele." When this proved a failure, Münkler published a book entitled "The Germans and their Myths." Münkler explained what was behind the idea: "We must find a grand narrative. We need to develop a Mosaic promise: You must go into the desert, but you will reach the Promised Land."[6] Münkler is still a member of the Advisory Board of the Federal College for Security Studies (BAKS), the German government's most important military policy think tank.
Balm for the German Soul
Observers are pointing to the fact that Münkler's, and particularly Clark's publications, are being enthusiastically acclaimed by members of the younger generation in Germany. "In a period, when the Federal Republic of Germany has again become a regional great power," denial of Germany's primary guilt for starting World War I is "balm for the soul of educated social sectors, grown more self-confident," explains the historian Stig Förster.[7] The historian Volker Ullrich considers particularly Clark's writings, to be "a change of course in the political interpretation of history." "Evidently a deep-seated need for exoneration is playing a role," according Ullrich. "If Germany's being solely responsible for setting off World War II is already unquestionable; then let it at least not be guilty of starting World War I." This drive seems "to become more overwhelming, the more Germany assumes a leading role in Europe, due to its economic preponderance." Ullrich points to a remark Herfried Münkler made in an interview: "A responsible policy can hardly be implemented in Europe, if one imagines that we are guilty of everything."[8]
[1] Dominik Geppert, Sönke Neitzel, Cora Stephan, Thomas Weber: Warum Deutschland nicht allein schuld ist. www.welt.de 04.01.2014.
[2] "Christopher Clark spricht die Deutschen von der Schuld am Ersten Weltkrieg frei". www.lisa.gerda-henkel-stiftung.de 14.11.2013.
[3] Gerd Krumeich: Unter Schlafwandlern. www.zeit.de 30.11.2012.
[4] Festvortrag von Christopher Clark: Preußenbilder im Wandel. Dokumentation zur Verleihung des Preises des Historischen Kollegs an Professor Dr. Christopher Clark, 5. November 2010.
[5] Der Ein-Mann-Think-Tank. www.zeit.de 30.10.2003.
[6] Herfried Münkler. www.welt.de 29.01.2011.
[7] "Balsam auf die Seele selbstbewusster gewordener Bildungsbürger". www.lisa.gerda-henkel-stiftung.de 17.12.2013.
[8] Volker Ullrich: Nun schlittern sie wieder. www.zeit.de 24.01.2014.
=== 5 ===
Also worth reading: 
Boris Johnson: Tristram Hunt should resign over First World War comments
By Georgia Graham, Political Correspondent - 06 Jan 2014
Na srpskohrvatskom:

Џонсон: Неоспорна истина, Први свјетски рат је резултат њемачке агресије!
10 јануар 2014

Градоначелник Лондона: Немци, нису Срби криви за рат већ ви!
13 јануар 2014


Germany started the Great War, but the Left can’t bear to say so


In this centennial year, it’s more important than ever that we treat the truth with respect

7:00AM GMT 06 Jan 2014
One of the reasons I am a Conservative is that, in the end, I just can’t stand the intellectual dishonesty of the Left. In my late teens I found I had come to hate the way Lefties always seemed to be trying to cover up embarrassing facts about human nature, or to refuse to express simple truths – and I disliked the pious way in which they took offence, and tried to shoosh you into silence, if you blurted such a truth.
Let me give you a current example of this type of proposition. It is a sad but undeniable fact that the First World War – in all its murderous horror – was overwhelmingly the result of German expansionism and aggression. That is a truism that has recently been restated by Max Hastings, in an excellent book, and that has been echoed by Michael Gove, the Education Secretary. I believe that analysis to be basically correct, and that it is all the more important, in this centenary year, that we remember it.
That fact is, alas, not one that the modern Labour Party believes it is polite to mention. According to the party’s education spokesman, Tristram Hunt, it is “crass” and “ugly” to say any such thing. It was “shocking”, he said in an article in yesterday’s Observer, that we continued to have this unacceptable focus on a “militaristic Germany bent on warmongering and imperial aggression”.
He went on – in a piece that deserves a Nobel prize for Tripe – to mount what appeared to be a kind of cock-eyed exculpation of the Kaiser and his generals. He pointed the finger, mystifyingly, at the Serbs. He blamed the Russians. He blamed the Turks for failing to keep the Ottoman empire together, and at one stage he suggested that we were too hard on the bellicose Junker class. He claimed that “modern scholarship” now believes that we have “underplayed the internal opposition to the Kaiser’s ideas within the German establishment” – as if that made things any better.
Perhaps there was some more “internal opposition” to the Kaiser, as Hunt thinks. Whoever they were, these internal opponents, they weren’t much blooming use, were they? It was Germany that pushed Austria to make war on Serbia. It was Germany that declared war on Russia, on August 1 1914. It was Germany that decided it was necessary to invade Luxembourg, and it was Germany that deployed the Schlieffen plan (devised in 1905, incidentally) and sent her troops smashing through neutral Belgium and into France.
Why was it necessary to follow up some rumpus in Sarajevo by invading France, for heaven’s sake? It wasn’t. The driving force behind the carnage was the desire of the German regime to express Germany’s destiny as a great European power, and to acquire the prestige and international clout that went with having an empire. That is why Tirpitz kept increasing the size of the German fleet – in spite of British efforts to end the arms race. That’s why they tried to bully the French by sending a gunboat to Agadir in 1911.
That, in a nutshell, is why millions died in the trenches of the western front and elsewhere, 15 million in all. It was an even greater tragedy for Germany, and for the world, that within two decades of the end of that conflict there should arise another German leader who decided to revive what was essentially the same military/political objective – a massive expansion of German influence in Europe and beyond; and though Hitler was admittedly even more nasty and militaristic than the Kaiser, it was no coincidence that he used a very similar plan: first take out France and the Low Countries, then go for Russia.
In both wars, huge numbers of British people, military and civilian, lost their lives in the struggle to frustrate these deranged ambitions. They were, in essence, fighting on the right side, and it should not be forbidden to state that fact. The Second World War arose inexorably out of the first, and in both wars I am afraid the burden of responsibility lies overwhelmingly on German shoulders. That is a fact that we should not be forbidden from stating today – not just for the sake of the truth, but for the sake of Germany in 2014.
Hunt is guilty of talking total twaddle, but beneath his mushy-minded blether about “multiple histories” there is what he imagines is a kindly instinct. These wars were utterly horrific for the Germans as well as for everyone else, and the Germans today are very much our friends. He doesn’t want the 1914 commemorations to pander to xenophobia, or nationalism, or Kraut-bashing; and I am totally with him on that.
We all want to think of the Germans as they are today – a wonderful, peaceful, democratic country; one of our most important global friends and partners; a country with stunning technological attainments; a place of incomparable cultural richness and civilisation. What Hunt fails to understand – in his fastidious Lefty obfuscation of the truth – is that he is insulting the immense spiritual achievement of modern Germany.
The Germans are as they are today because they have been frank with themselves, and because over the past 60 years they have been agonisingly thorough in acknowledging the horror of what they did. They don’t try to brush it aside. They don’t blame the Serbs for the 1914-18 war. They don’t blame the Russians or the Turks. They know the price they paid for the militarism of the 20th century.
They don’t try to mitigate, palliate, or spread the blame for the conflict. They tried that in the Thirties, and they know that way lies madness. The Germans know the truth about the world wars, and their role. They have learnt, and they have changed. It would be a disaster if that truth became blurred today. I can hardly believe that the author of this fatuous Observer article is proposing to oversee the teaching of history in our schools.
If Tristram Hunt seriously denies that German militarism was at the root of the First World War, then he is not fit to do his job, either in opposition or in government, and should resign. If he does not deny that fact, he should issue a clarification now.
=== 6 ===

German CP, Declaration First World War [En, De, Fr]

Resolution by German Communist Party, Communist Party of Luxembourg and Workers’ Party of Belgium
Monday, 13 January 2014

100 years after the onset of World War I, we live through a renewed debate about who lit the fuse. When again German imperialism’s major responsibility for the four years of butchery among peoples is being questioned, this for sure is not in search for historical truth. It is about seeking theoretical and political legitimization for today’s imperialist politics.

World War I arose from the major imperialist European powers’ desire for expansion. It aimed to conquer new markets and resources, and to re-allocate the given ones. As the co-founder of the Communist Party of Germany, Karl Liebknecht, soon stated, it was “a capitalist war of aggression and conquest”. At the same time, it was an opportunity for the rulers to contaminate the working class’s conscience in their countries with the poison of opportunism, nationalism and chauvinism.

In summer 1914, there were two tight military blocks opposed in Europe: the tripartite alliance of Germany, Austro-Hungary and Italy versus theEntente of England and France which then also Russia allied with. In 1915, Italy entered the war siding with the Entente.

The Sarajevo assault was a very welcomed opportunity for the great powers, already eager for war, to put their strategic concepts into practice. A war followed, which for the first time in history held grip of all continents. 38 countries were involved, not counting the then colonies. Also for the first time ever, a war was waged in industrial manner. Seven million people fell victim to the manslaughter. Civilians became victims of famine and diseases in dimensions unknown before. 20 millions were wounded and crippled, and an incredible amount of values destroyed.

The slaughters ended by the aggressors’ military defeat. The November Revolution in Germany and the revolutions in Austria, Hungary and other countries were stalled because of the right-wing social democratic leaderships’ active role in crushing the Revolution. In Germany the monarchy was overthrown and the republic was founded, but the generals, however, and the powers of the monopolist capital remained. Their political survival gave way for World War II later on.

The social democracy split in the course of World War I. The revolutionary forces separated from the 2nd International and founded Communist Parties all over the world. The Great Socialist October Revolution in Russia paved the way for the first workers’ and peasants’ state in the history of mankind. Thus from the World War emerged a new hope for the world—the hope for Socialism. This is what the signing parties are still standing for.

“And, finally, the only war left for Prussia-Germany to wage will be a world war, a world war, moreover of an extent the violence hitherto unimagined. Eight to ten million soldiers will be at each other’s throats and in the process they will strip Europe barer than a swarm of locusts. The depredations of the 30 Years’ War compressed into three to four years and extended over the entire continent; famine, disease, the universal lapse into barbarism, both of the armies and the people, in the wake of acute misery irretrievable dislocation of our artificial system of’ trade, industry and credit, ending in universal bankruptcy, collapse of the old states and their conventional political wisdom to the point where crowns will roll into the gutters by the dozen, and no one will be around to pick them up; the absolute impossibility of foreseeing how it will all end and who will emerge as victor from the battle. Only one consequence is absolutely certain: universal exhaustion and the creation of the conditions for the ultimate victory of the working class.”

Friedrich Engels, 1887



Erklärung DKP, KP Luxemburgs, Partei der Arbeit Belgiens

100 Jahre nach dem Beginn des Ersten Weltkrieges erleben wir eine erneute Debatte darum, wer das Feuer an die Lunte gelegt hat. Bei dieser Infragestellung der Hauptverantwortung des deutschen Imperialismus an dem über vier Jahre dauernden Völkergemetzel geht es selbstverständlich nicht um historische Wahrheit. Es geht um die theoretische und politische Legitimierung heutiger imperialistischer Politik.

Der Erste Weltkrieg erwuchs aus den Expansionsinteressen der imperialistischen Großmächte Europas, er war auf Eroberung neuer Märkte und Ressourcen und die Neuaufteilung der vorhandenen gerichtet: Ein „kapitalistischer Angriffs- und Eroberungskrieg“, wie Karl Liebknecht, Mitgründer der Kommunistischen Partei Deutschlands, früh feststellte. Gleichzeitig war der Krieg eine Gelegenheit für die Herrschenden, in ihren Ländern das Bewusstsein der Arbeiterklasse mit dem Gift des Opportunismus, des Nationalismus und Chauvinismus zu verseuchen.

Im Sommer 1914 standen sich in Europa zwei feste Militärblöcke gegenüber: Der „Dre

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