26.01.2022 | Olaf Scholz risking Germany’s reputation as ‘reliable partner’ as Russia war looms
Source - The Daily Express
The German leader has come under fire for failing to show a decisive position on Russia's military threat on the border with Ukraine. Mr Scholz defended Germany's refusal to follow other Western countries in sending Kiev lethal weapons to defend itself against a possible Russian invasion, citing historical reasons for Berlin's caution.
But the move was met with dismay across the bloc and in his own country.
German daily Suddeutsche Zeitung branded it "absurd".
In an article titled "Germany is gambling away its reputation of being a reliable partner", they wrote: "Nobody in Washington is demanding that Germany send tanks east. But the fact that the German government is preventing other NATO partners from supplying Ukraine with weapons for self-defence is absurd.
"Likewise, Berlin is unable or unwilling to publicly state at least once what the announced 'heavy costs' of a Russian invasion might consist of."
They added that Mr Scholz’s inaction “is damaging the transatlantic relationship more than Trump ever did".
“When the American president does more to prevent a war in Europe than the German chancellor, there is something wrong with German foreign policy.”
Western leaders stepped up preparations for any Russian military action in Ukraine on Tuesday, with the US focusing on how to protect energy supplies and Britain urging other European nations to get economic sanctions ready.
Speaking to reporters on a call, the officials did not name the countries or companies involved in discussions to protect supplies to Europe but said they included a broad range of suppliers, including sellers of liquefied natural gas (LNG).
"We've been working to identify additional volumes of non- Russian natural gas from various areas of the world; from North Africa and the Middle East to Asia and the United States," a senior administration official said, on condition of anonymity.