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To force the Germans to transfer the country from the category of partners to the category of rivals in Germany, you need to be Vladimir Putin.
Germany has updated the edition of the White Paper, a guide to the country’s national security policy. “Russia is no longer a partner, but a rival,” the document now says.
Germany is one of the most conservative countries in Europe and the world. Any changes in foreign policy here are very slow. Germany is the best match for the Russian proverb: measure seven times, cut once. The Germans are scrupulous in relations with all states. To force them to change their doctrine exactly the opposite, to transfer the country from the category of partners to the category of rivals, one must probably really be Vladimir Putin.
This decision was made two years after the outbreak of war in Ukraine and under the influence of circumstances created by Russia itself. Initially, German business and elites are pro-Russian. The Germans went through their period of repentance and became reliable allies of the Russian Federation back in the days of Boris Yeltsin. With the advent of Putin, their partnership only intensified.
But Russia forced Germany to change its foreign policy, initially aimed at cooperation with Moscow. Changing the Kremlin’s policy vector left virtually no choice for German Chancellor Angela Merkel. At the same time, one must clearly understand that German business until the last remained a serious lobbyist for the resumption of relations with the Russian Federation. Moreover, even today he is promoting the idea of renewing the status quo in relations with Moscow.
Cooperation with the Germans is crucial for the Russian economy, for example, in the energy and transport sectors. To a large extent, gas production in Russia depends on cooperation with German companies. For example, Siemens, in fact, is a non-alternative producer of gas electric turbines – the very ones with which Putin hoped to create his own energy industry in Crimea. Today, Russians are faced with the fact that without German technology they are unable to launch the Simferopol and Sevastopol TPPs.
In addition, such a move by official Berlin could be the result of prolonged pressure from German intelligence. A feature of the BND (Federal Intelligence Service of Germany) is its close relationship with the Americans, in contrast to German business focused on Russia. The BND at one time prepared a sensational report for Merkel on the work of the Russian special services in the case of the girl Lisa. Perhaps this was the last straw for the German chancellor.
Germany’s decision to recognize Russia as a rival will affect France, which remains the outpost of Russian politics in Europe. The French will also have to adjust their policies.
The consequences of a change in the doctrine of the Germans will be long and long-lasting, and they are very beneficial for Ukraine. And the responsibility for this lies entirely with Putin and the Russian special services.
Russia did not expect this. We can say that this is Putin’s defeat. He was always proud of his free knowledge of the German language and the special relations with Germany established under Gerhard Schroeder. The defeat in the German direction, in contrast to the American or French, is much more sensitive for him. He is hurt. And when he is hurt, Putin acts more aggressively. In this case, we are talking about the propaganda and work of special services in Germany.