July 20, 2024

Taylor Daily Press

Complete News World

Who is insulted from here?  German press divided over Zelensky’s rejection of President Steinmeier

Who is insulted from here? German press divided over Zelensky’s rejection of President Steinmeier

German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier wanted to visit Kyiv to send a “strong signal of European solidarity” with his counterparts from Poland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. Poles and Balts were most welcome, but Steinmeier’s solidarity was not appreciated by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

An unnamed Ukrainian diplomat told the German newspaper picture The reason for this: “We all know his close relations with Russia.” Steinmeier was head of the Federal Chancellery under Gerhard Schroeder, the chancellor who joined the Russian gas company Gazprom after his tenure. As foreign minister under Chancellor Angela Merkel, he was a staunch supporter of good relations with Russia, symbolized by the controversial Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. Ukraine sees Steinmeier as Putin Verstersomeone who understands Putin, like many members of his Social Democratic Party.

Unlike Schroeder and Merkel, Steinmeier lamented his stance on Putin. “Obviously my support for Nord Stream 2 was a mistake. We clung to a ‘bridge’ that Russia didn’t believe and other partners warned us about,” Steinmeier said in early April.

However, Ukraine was not waiting for a symbolic flight from Steinmeier, head of state with a largely ceremonial function. And Andrey Melnik, Ukraine’s ambassador to Germany, said it would be better if Chancellor Schulz himself came to Kyiv to discuss the delivery of heavy weapons.

Schulz said he found Steinmeier’s refusal “a bit disturbing”. He left open the question whether he would still go to Kyiv himself. Wolfgang Kubicki, senior MP for the liberal coalition partner FDP, said he could not imagine the chancellor traveling to “a country that declares the German head of state persona non grata”. Green Bundestag member Jürgen Tritten described Steinmeier’s rejection as a “propaganda victory for Putin”.

See also  A group of orcas sinks the boat, the crew has to flee on the lifeboat

historical debt

Since the outbreak of the war, Germany has quickly thrown taboos into the sea. Nord Stream 2 has been cancelled. Because of its historical debt, Germany never wanted to supply weapons to the warring nations, but Stinger missiles and other weapons are now heading to Ukraine.

Ukraine believes that Germany is not going far enough. It wants more heavy weapons, like tanks, and tougher sanctions, like a Russian energy boycott. Germany is reluctant to supply tanks and avoids the embargo on Russian oil and gas, fearing that its economy will plunge into a deep recession. However, pressure on Germany is growing, especially when atrocities come to light, as in Botja.

In this delicate situation, did Zelensky over-humiliate the Germans? Or is Steinmeier’s refusal a clever move in his media strategy, adding to the pressure on the Germans to do what Ukraine wants?

Gas and good relations

Many politicians and the media reacted with alarm on Wednesday to the “diplomatic insult” that surrounded Steinmeier’s trip. The conservative daily wrote that Ukraine should bear in mind that Germany has been the country’s largest financial donor since the outbreak of the war die felt† conservative too Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung He believes that Ukraine’s position was ill-advised: “Understanding the desperate plight of Ukrainians, anyone with an enemy like Putin should not deliberately strain relations with his friends, especially his relationship with his largest lender.”

Nevertheless, Zelensky appealed to the Germans. Germany has to pay for it PolicySeveral newspapers wrote that the interests of Ukraine and Eastern Europe were subordinated to the German desire for economic growth, cheap Russian gas and good relations with Russia. The left-wing liberal newspaper stated that although it has undergone a transformation die zeitBut he hesitates to implement it. Meanwhile, tens of thousands of people have been affected by the war in Ukraine. Put yourself in Zelensky for a moment, per comment die zeit† He’s been calling for arms and tougher sanctions for weeks. What is going on? No Chancellor Schultz comes to Kyiv with new pledges. “But the guy who can’t bring anything Ukraine needs, just a token warm handshake, makes him look especially good.” For Ukrainians, this is an insult, according to die zeit