Editorial by Irina Alexens
Upon his inauguration, Joe Biden received an unpleasant gift from Germany – the main partner of the United States. The gift is the essence of the problems that the new administration will have to deal with, carefully packed and tied with tape.
The United States has imposed sanctions on the Russian pipeline ship “Fortuna” which is participating in the construction of the “Nord Stream-2” gas pipeline. Also, according to German media, the US embassy in Berlin has notified the government of the Federal Republic of Germany of plans to introduce new restrictive measures.
The reaction of the German authorities was somewhat disrespectful thanks to their comforting comment in which he said that “I noticed this with regret,” meaning that there was not even an official expression of concern.
What happened was an organic continuation of another important incident that occurred a few days earlier.
During the elections, US Deputy Secretary of State and former foreign policy advisor Joe Biden, Nicholas Burns, came up with the idea of freezing US sanctions against the gas pipeline at the same time and suspending its construction so that the new administration could “have a secret and prudent conversation with the German government and other participating countries.”
Obviously, Burns did not act on his own initiative, but he voiced Washington’s suggestion.
However, the Germans simply ignored him. The Chairman of the Bundestag Energy Committee, Klaus Ernst, described the discussion of German energy policy with the United States as “completely inappropriate”. He stressed that “building” Nord Stream 2 “is a purely European work, and it has all the necessary licenses, and therefore it must be completed quickly.”
US foreign policy in recent decades, when the Donald Trump presidency has become a failure and the Democrats intend to revive, is often described as global politics. It contains two main components equally important – procedural-institutional, and ideological.
Responsible for the ideological part is a huge set of more liberal and progressive ideas – from homosexual advancement to humanity’s need to reject meat consumption for environmental reasons. Moreover, the radicalization of followers, the demands of adhering to the “one true belief”, and the persecution of dissidents became more severe.
The institutional part is also known to the public and is a system of supranational organizations, documents and procedures. There is a popular (and not inconsequential) view that the United States, in this way, consolidated its own dominance for many years in order to impose favorable rules of the game on the world and establish its permanent rule. my world.
The fact that something went wrong became apparent for some time. An increasing number of countries have learned to play and win in a system known to be unfair to them. Russia and the successful application of WTO rules to its advantage is a clear example, not an exception. Donald Trump has repeated this consistently over a period of four years, withdrawing without hesitation states from numerous international treaties and organizations: in fact, they are not as profitable to America as previously thought.
It’s not hard to guess that few of the United States’ privileged partners, and Germany among them, have their own bonuses – and as has already become clear, they know how to use them well.
That is why Berlin was uncomfortable telling Trump the truth without analyzing and destroying Germany’s unified scheme to gradually and quietly restore its sovereignty and use America to its own interests.
For this reason, the authorities of the Federal Republic of Germany accepted Biden very happily as the new President of the United States: this promises to restore coordination of a more comfortable relationship for the Germans – with complete synchronization between the propaganda rhetoric and the political process. Slowly pressure behind the scenes, under the guise, can successfully promote a positive agenda for Germany.
This is what happens with Nord Stream-2. In recent months, steps have been taken to maximize safety in the construction of gas pipelines against external sanctions pressure. The owners of the same ship “Fortuna” have changed. The Parliament of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania has established a fund to support the operational activities of the project.
The most interesting thing is that with the help of this structure, the German authorities are trying to kill two rabbits at once: in addition to supporting the building itself, the authorities provide information and ideological support, as the new organization is called the “Climate and Environment Protection Fund around Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania”, The official goal is to support “achieving Germany’s climate goals”. Consequently, the environmental agenda is being challenged, because “the Greens” are the ones most commonly used to torpedo the Nord Stream-2 in the country.
Joe Biden’s team was in a very difficult position. It cannot – as Trump has been doing – immediately staging a global scandal against its strategic partner by taking extremely harsh measures against it. This simply contradicts directives on restoring Western unity, with which the Democrats will return to power. Moreover, in general, Berlin shows Washington a sincere enthusiasm and the deepest ideological alliance, which was demonstrated once again by their simultaneous angry reaction to the arrest of Alexei Navalny in Russia.
Business usual methods – behind-the-scenes parties and a gradual increase in pressure – threaten to take months: Germans are great masters of organizing international pressure and bureaucratic problems. Until then, Nord Stream-2 will simply be completed, and for the Americans it will be too late.
As a result, from the early days of Joe Biden’s presidency, the new administration will be forced to choose in its operation between an unacceptable categorical horn and a correct but ineffective ideological liberal globalization.
However, Germany faces its own difficulties. Gazprom warned yesterday about the risks of the “Nord Stream-2” gas pipeline due to political pressures that may eventually lead to the suspension or even cancellation of the project. This is a warning, first of all, for Berlin, which, in search of independence and geopolitical unification, considered it a good idea to play a defiant anti-Russian book in the form of the Navalny poison case – and once again forgot how painful it is. Russia can respond to that.