“Europe Is at a Disadvantage”

Judy Dempsey asks Jana Puglierin and other experts about the current political crisis in Germany

13/06/2019 | by Jana Puglierin

“Judy Asks,” Carnegie Europe Blog, June 6, 2019

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As part of her "Strategic Europe" blog for Carnegie Europe's website, Judy Dempsey asked a selection of foreign and security policy experts, including DGAP's Jana Puglierin, about the consequences of Germany’s political crisis for Europe.

Judy Dempsey asks: Is Germany’s Political Crisis Dangerous for Europe?

Jana Puglierin answers:

Yes, because since Germany’s last federal election in 2017, German foreign and European policy has been largely paralyzed. The “new dawn for Europe” that then SPD leader Martin Schulz negotiated into the coalition agreement between Germany’s two governing partners was cancelled at short notice—and French President Emmanuel Macron was left out in the rain.

Instead, the grand coalition is concerned with itself. The SPD is trying to stop its freefall by advocating peace more than any other German party. As a result, it preaches more Europe in its security policy but prevents a truly European security and defense policy by going it alone at the national level. This begins with a strict approach to its arms-export policy, which endangers stronger integration of the European arms industry. The SPD also rejects the NATO goal of spending the equivalent of 2 percent of GDP on defense—even though Germany has committed to regularly increasing its defense budget.

While the SPD is making further Europeanization in this area more difficult, the CDU is more or less blocking everything related to the euro. The coalition is therefore standing in its own way. Upcoming regional elections in three former East German states mean that the CDU and SPD will continue to campaign against each other in the coming months instead of governing together constructively. Europe is at a disadvantage.

Read the entire blog here.

 
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