What Games Berlin Plays in the Middle East / News / News agency Inforos
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What Games Berlin Plays in the Middle East

Germany's actual policies range a far cry from what is possible and constructive

29.08.2018 11:51 Christoph Hörstel, German Publicist & Government Consultant

What Games Berlin Plays in the Middle East

The Middle East today is one of seven zones globally, where Washington either prepares for war ore is already actively involved in ongoing conflicts. The other six zones are: Middle Eastern Europe with special crisis area Ukraine, Africa with several hot spots - Libya in the forefront, both Koreas: North and South, The China Sea, both south and east, Diaoyu Island case involving Japan, South America focussing presently on Venezuela - but keeping the whole subcontinent under permanent interference pressure - and, last not least: the Arctic. This impressing enumeration sounds like a lot - and that's correct: This globe is a very dangerous place, with most of the troubles basically linked to one single capital: Washington.

In the Middle East, Syria, Yemen and Iran plus permanent disaster area Palestine are the main hot spots, Bahrain and Egypt face major problems of oppression, Saudi Arabia shows ambivalent potentials, a young succeeding monarch is still defining ways and means. In the Middle East, Washington maintains two dangerously close connections of co-operation, detrimental in fact to all three sides: with Tel Aviv and Riyadh. Parallel, Washington is very busy to nourish two declared enmities: Iran and Syria. Both countries' leaders show as little interest in continuing this dangerous type of relation as in kowtowing to Washington's wishes at the expense of their peoples. These are rare cases of extraordinary courage, the whole western empire consisting of leaders generally all too eager to co-operate and congratulating themselves for speech contracts after retirement, with a highly specialised and Zionist-founded New York-based family business of the world's most important speaker agency: Harry Walker. Speech contracts may include fees of up to one million US dollars, main and best known recipient: former president of the USA, Bill Clinton. Those procedures raise questions of corruption.

With both resisting countries, Iran and Syria, Russia keeps good and close relations. In the case of Syria, Russia is the most important supporter, giving all kinds of support, in the defense sector involving all branches of the service: air, land and sea. In the Syria crisis, Turkey started as an adversary - but today enjoys improving ties to both Russia and Iran, while NATO and Israel connections sour noticeably, US support to Kurdish groups considered by Ankara as terrorist being one major point of background - the other mounting once more to gross interference by Washington into Turkey's home affairs, a coup attempt in 2016, with Russian president Putin personally warning his colleague Erdoğan. Foreign Arab interference in the Syria conflict now sees Saudi Arabia at the helm, while Qatar as an "early investor" has been pushed to the side and as of late faces troubles with its bigger neighbor. One reason for this is the fact that Doha chose to peacefully settle problems in extracting gas from the sea-based South Pars/North Dome gas-condensate fields by talks and constructive steps. Saudi Arabia increasingly positions itself as main regional Arab adversary of Iran in the Middle East, threatening Qatar, which led Turkey to send in thousands of troops. The brand-new Israel connection opened a hitherto unlikely chance of co-operation with Israel, resulting in new positions in the Palestine conflict. This in turn enables Washington to back special consultant and Donald Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner, who is planning to take Palestinian home rights from the refugees in the region, thus easing up pressure for returning rights based on UN resolutions and democracy in Israel, the latter recently harmed by the new nationality law. Israel is under permanent suspicion to be on its way to "Greater Israel", as proclaimed in the so-called "Yinon Plan". This is being hotly denied by Israeli sources, however, daily international interference practice does not help to put the debate to rest. Explanations by Wikipedia suffer from manifold accusations, that the volunteer network does not report these important cases correctly.

What could be rightly and fairly expected from Germany in this multiply complicated difficult case of ME politics? Generally speaking: In all following country cases, German could well use its influence to help limit US and other NATO countries' gross interference practices. The following list does not claim completeness:

I. Syria

•             - Limit Saudi Arabia's gross interference practices.

•             - Assist in taking back home 1.5 - 2 million Syrian immigrants. The trip cost including generous assistance in Syria would be easily covered by savings on 5-10 times higher cost of living in Germany. Fact is, German authorities often make life difficult for those who want to return - and the relatives of the immigrants keep pouring in.

•             - Help stop Washington-backed and co-ordinated interference in Syria's internal affairs. Unfortunately, Germany has a good number of its secret agents (BND) located in Syria. In the past, a German warship off Syria's coast line was engaged in terror attacks against Syria - according to a short notice by German weekly "Stern" (star).

•             - In Potsdam and elsewhere Syrian nationals are working on a post-war order in their country - this activity has never been co-ordinated let alone okayed by Damascus. Germany assists the Syrian opposition in many ways, only this establishes a gross act of illegal interference.

•             - Stop putting pressure on longstanding Syrian immigrants, who have been successfully integrated into German society, among them 70'000 Syrian doctors of all branches and special trainings.

•             - Pay assistance to Syria's reconstruction - partly as reparations for having supported Washington's disruptive strategies and policies.

II. Iran

•             - Help unite the EU and others in support of Iran against illegal sanctions by Washington.

•             - Unite with Iran's friends and supporters to limit sanctions' damages.

•             - Encourage German companies to increase business with Iran.

•             - Assist in opening up our financial system to increase business with Iran.

III. Palestine

•             - Break the blocking of Gaza strip by Israel.

•             - Generous assistance to all impoverished Palestinians against cessation of armed attacks.

•             - Stop all ways of the present special German-Israel relations, until Tel Aviv withdraws completely and unconditionally from all occupied territories.

•             - Recognize statehood of Palestine like Sweden.

•             - Adopt BDS (= Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions) until:

o             - Freedom and full return of all Palestinians into their legitimate homelands is effected.

o             - Legal discrimination against Palestinians in Israel and the West Bank is stopped completely.

o             - All under age and political prisoners are set free

o             - Torture is stopped and all cases are under public and international scrutiny

IV. Bahrain

•             - Push the EU and US to unite against all oppression of the people by their monarchs.

•             - Adopt BDS (= Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions) against the Bahraini regime until:

o             - Freedom for all political prisoners.

o             - Restitution of all democratic rights to the people.

o             - Torture is stopped and cases are under public and international scrutiny.

o             - Free and democratic elections are being held under international observation

V. Yemen

•             - Assist in stronger and more co-ordinated EU policies against Saudi and, if proved, Iranian interference in Yemen.

•             - Help arrange an immediate ceasefire.

•             - Increase sharply all humanitarian aid.

VI. Egypt

•             - Assist return of rule of law.

•             - Encourage and push for end of political oppression including gross human rights violations.

In this complicated situation, Germany's traditional 20th century role of honest broker in the Middle East has changed somewhat during chancellor Merkel's tenure. In her 2007 address (September 2005, Bulletin No. 98-4) to the UN plenary session, Merkel had proclaimed Germany's "special historical responsibility for Israel's existence" as "part of the German state doctrine". Merkel continued: "That means, Israel's security is never subject of negotiation." Fact is, however, that Merkel has no right whatsoever to overextend her duties towards Germany in such a speech: She has sworn an oath of office to keep damage away from the German people, in 2009 she forgot to raise her hand while speaking it. Observes criticized, that her 2007 speech gave Israel's policies of oppression against Palestinians and other illegal acts too much of a carte blanche. In the same speech, Merkel reversed the burden of proof about the nature of Iran's nuclear program: "It is not that the world has to prove to Iran, that Iran is building the bomb. Iran has to prove to the world, that is does not want the bomb." Two comments, for which there is no need to study (international) law: a) It is completely impossible, to prove the non-existence of an intention. b) To reverse the burden of proof is in clear breach of legal procedures - and Merkel knows that. German's foreign policy experts are overstaffed with studied lawyers, which leads to the fact, that our policy shapers sometimes tend to forget, that politics are not entirely legal questions, but very often simply a power game.

Fact about Iran is, that already in 2003 then Iranian president Mohammed Khatami had reversed course on the country's nuclear program, and had since tried very hard, to conclude a deal very much like the 2015 JCPoA with his then US colleague George W. Bush - but, alas, in vain. Bush didn't want to hear any of it, no matter how hard the moderate reformer Khatami tried. This in fact helped the raise of much tougher successor Ahmadinejad - and to the firm conviction of some observers, this hardening of the Iranian position was, what Washington intended to bring about. And it appears as no wonder, that Khatami later supported the candidacy of Ahmadinejad's successor Hassan Ruhani, who managed to achieve JCPoA...

After this UN speech Germany has at times followed a stiffer sanction policy towards Iran than the US itself. Thus traditionally very friendly and deep relations with Iran have suffered greatly, trade volume shrank by more than half. In the last months, the Hamburg-based Iranian state-owned European-Iranian Trade Bank (EIH) tried to transfer 300 million Euros from her account with the German Federal Bank to Tehran. The transfer went public on July 7, because Tehran finally insisted on flying cash out of Frankfurt. Then, very quickly, the new US ambassador Grenell, who regularly stuns colleagues, the German government and public by gross acts of uninvited interference into Germany's interior affairs, urged Germany not to allow the transfer. Subsequently, effective August 25, The German Federal Bank changed it rules, requiring customers to comply with sharp regulations of money laundering and support of terrorism. EIH informed the author on the day of publication of this article, that the transfer was not yet carried out. No doubt: Germany's procedures are illegal. Problem: Iran has nobody to turn to, all European and global institutions are under one-sided command. Iran is known to be generally open to mutually respectful compromise. The German procedures appear as crossing the lines into blackmail on behalf of Washington to enforce Iran’s obedience.

As with Syria, Germany basically lends strict support to all illegal interference and interventionist Washington-guided policies, as it has strictly followed the so-called "Arab Spring" propaganda lines, though in fact what the world has witnessed was a mere "CIA spring". When the CIA network used Syria in its torture franchise system, with German members of parliament travelling to Damascus to inspect data from the interrogation results, there were no or little complaints in western media or politics against "the Assad regime". When more aggressive Washington strategies against the country were put into practice, this changed - and German policies changed, too. At present, Berlin tries to blackmail Damascus into more obedient ways by withholding return of 1.5-2 million refugees. Thus the Merkel government puts political pressure on the legitimate Assad government to compromise with its interior enemies in order to be returned Syrian refugees willing to get home. That policy stands against any international law and regulation. As to the question of German financial support for reconstruction projects in Syria, Berlin has so far declined. In fact, if there was rule of law in this world, Germany would come under justified pressure to pay reparations.

Again. After WW2 - and for fresh crimes.

In the case of Palestine, developments in Germany's policies are unhappy, following similar US moves. As a result, humanitarian aid is not sufficiently being granted, especially the Gaza strip is underfunded, private charitable organizations face manifold hurdles in any movement, from bank accounts to transfer of funds and goods. The Hamas movement comes under a double-pronged pressure: More radical groups increase their following, being supported by lack of Israeli pressure - the very same tactics Tel Aviv applied, when Hamas was new. On the other side western countries are boycotting Hamas, which was declared a terrorist group - and remains so since 2017, following a court rule. Gone are the times, when NATO secretary general, Javier Solana (1995-99), vowed, that Hamas committed not enough terrorist acts to be regarded as a terrorist group. Germany's Israel policies show a different tendency: compliance. In the election year 2017, chancellor Merkel had suspended commune cabinet meetings with the Israeli Netanyahu-led government, due to Israel's aggressive settlement policy, blatantly contradicting UN resolutions. In 2018, the meetings were re-instated, though Israel's policies have not changed at all. Germany has armed Israel with six "Dolphin Class" submarines, at 30% price reduction, Israel has added nuclear capabilities, the whole system exceeding all comparable NATO weaponry: in missile calibre, diving abilities and anti-detection measures. Three more subs, again with price reduction, are to replace the older three, which Israel says it will take out of service. But what if Tel Aviv reconsiders? This weapon system alone can put the whole globe under nuclear blackmail.

In the cases of Bahrain, Yemen and Egypt, Germany has by and large not carried out any special moves in support of humanitarian, human rights, legal and welfare projects, other than or transgressing EU policies.

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