World News: The Fate and Future of Germany

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The new German Chancellor, Olaf Scholz, has before him two options: To strengthen Germany's position to serve its own interests or to strengthen the European Union as the geopolitical actor of tomorrow by founding German power for this purpose.

Rarely have the general elections in Germany aroused so much interest. And for good reason, called to vote to elect a new majority in the Bundestag, the Germans hold in their ballot papers more than the future of Schiller's nation.

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Because whoever is chosen by the President of the Federal Republic of Germany, once the election has been approved, could, or may not, give the European Union a new direction. Spearheading European cooperation with France, Germany, the continent's largest economy, Europe's leading demographic power with nearly 83 million inhabitants (2019), has all the cards in hand to give political Europe a second suffering.

The Australian submarine affair, which has recently highlighted the diplomatic fragility of France and more broadly that of the European Union, unable to propose a united and united front, has left deep traces in US/Europe relations despite the Atlanticism displayed by Angela Merkel, in no hurry to step up to the plate in order to defend Paris and Brussels.

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Guidance and Solidarity

It will therefore be up to the Chancellor's successor to affirm his European convictions, whatever they may be. Angela Merkel, who had made the economic question the priority of her mandates, paid little attention to geostrategic and geopolitical issues, more concerned with Germany's place on the continent as an economic power than as a geopolitical actor.

This orientation, which has long satisfied on the other side of the Atlantic, thus putting Berlin's interests first before those of the European Union, has nevertheless destabilized or more precisely unbalanced political Europe, which did not find, or no longer found, in one of its first founding members the enthusiasm necessary for the growth of the Union and a form of political and geostrategic maturity.

The tacit Atlanticism of Germany, which was in some ways similar to that of the British, somewhat undermined a political whole that needed the support and solidarity of all its members more than countries playing isolated partitions dedicated to their interests alone. Does this mean that France was alone in this endeavor in the face of German selfishness?

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Far from it, but The German economic success allowed, and still allows Today Berlin to decide, sometimes through bitter negotiations and that some would consider peremptory, without really worrying about the opinion of its partners The Greek example in 2008, faced with an Alexis Tsipras, hostage to the Greek sovereign debt, is the perfect illustration.

Germany First and Geopolitical Tensions

What can we expect from the new Chancellor? The most pessimistic will say that it is not useful to nurture particular hopes. Germany, with its strong dominant position in Europe, endorsed by the United States, would have no obvious reason to change its policy without neglecting its role in the European construction to be completed, at least to be pursued.

A form of Germany First, watered down and less aggressive than that promoted by Donald Trump, could therefore continue without excess or overflow so as not to offend either France or the European Union. The most optimistic will argue that Berlin, on the other hand, will certainly seek to engage even more in the European enterprise to support a well-isolated France in a team that is certainly effective but which could be more so.

The truth may ultimately be in between. With its image and its proven status as a continental power, Germany has every interest in first playing the European game while heavy geopolitical and geostrategic tensions are looming, particularly in Asia-Pacific or Indo-Pacific where economic power alone will no longer suffice.

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Bio: Olivier Longhi an opinion columnist for, has extensive experience in European history. A seasoned journalist with fifteen years of experience, he is currently professor of history and geography in the Toulouse region of France. He has held a variety of publishing positions, including Head of Agency and Chief of Publishing. A journalist, recognized blogger, editor, and editorial project manager, he has trained and managed editorial teams, worked as a journalist for various local radio stations, a press and publishing consultant, and a communications consultant.

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