Did Germany just declare war against Russia?
Is it a real declaration of war? Yes. On January 24, Baerbock gave a speech to the Council of Europe – not to be confused with an institution of the European Union. Although this speech contained borderline provocations, it was a scripted intervention. However, in the subsequent hearing, Baerbock had to answer questions without a prepared text.
Published: January 29, 2023, 7:54 am
She uttered a sentence in English that she obviously did not grasp: “We are fighting a war against Russia and not against each other.”
It was Baerbock’s response to a question from Norwegian MP Ingrid Schulerud, who wanted to know when Germany would decide to deliver Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine. Baerbock responded that criticism and comparisons of shipment volumes were not helpful to Ukraine’s proxy war effort.
How does a country formally declare war?
So that misunderstandings are ruled out and the spectre of war is not inadvertently released, international law provides for high formal hurdles for a legally valid declaration of war.
The self-proclaimed international law expert Baerbock overcame them all with the power of indescribable stupidity: Because at that moment when she spoke, 77 years after the end of the war, the Federal Republic of Germany and the Russian Federation were actually and truly officially at war with one another.
For a formally valid declaration of war, this must first be pronounced by an official representative of one state. As Federal Foreign Minister, Baerbock fulfilled this requirement. This declaration must take place in an official setting. A speech before the Council of Europe, which has the task of securing peace in Europe, also satisfied the second condition. Only the third condition is somewhat problematic. Because an official representative of the other state must be present to receive this declaration.
On March 15, however, Russia was expelled from the Council of Europe, a move which evidently was bad for peace, but at least this time it probably saved the world from Baerbock’s moronic grandstanding.
If an official representative of the Russian Federation had been among the spectators, that person would then – for better or for worse – have had to acknowledge the declaration of war. As it is, however, it is easy to argue that a public television broadcast is sufficient to officially inform the other state.
The Foreign Office quickly jumped in to cover for the statement of it erring chief. “During her meeting with members of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe on January 24, Foreign Minister Baerbock emphasized that Europe must stand together against this war.”
In view of the delivery of Leopard tanks to Ukraine, more and more people are concerned that Germany could become a direct party to the conflict. Last but not least, these concerns were fueled by the statement from Baerbock in the Council of Europe. Germany’s arms deliveries to Ukraine are undeniably now perceived as involvement in the conflict.
Russia’s cool response
According to Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, the statements by Baerbock as well as former Chancellor Angela Merkel suggest that the West planned a war against Russia from the outset. On Wednesday, on her Telegram channel, she quoted Baerbock’s other statements at the PACE meeting that more had to be done “to protect Ukraine”.
As is well known, Merkel said in an interview for the weekly newspaper Die Zeit in December last year that the German and French mediation efforts in the Minsk format were aimed at deceiving Russia in order to “strengthen Ukraine”. These words were echoed by former French President François Hollande, who noted that Ukraine had increased its military potential since 2014.
Director General of the Russian Foreign Affairs Council Andrei Kortunov recalled that Baerbock had always taken “radical” positions: “The conflict between the Greens and the Social Democrats was very serious from the start. Chancellor Olaf Scholz called for moderation and restraint, while Baerbock tended to be decisive and uncompromising. Far more than Scholz, she is in solidarity with the radical stance of the Baltic States, Poland and recently Finland’s too.”
He pointed out that while Baerbock was saying one thing, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on the same day said that the alliance was not directly involved in the Ukraine conflict. NATO and its member states want to position themselves as comfortably as possible: on the one hand to offer Ukraine increasingly intensive supplies, on the other hand to pretend to stay out of the conflict.
NATO has been pursuing this tactic since the beginning of the confrontation, with a “gradual escalation of engagement, while at the same time it is constantly emphasized that neither NATO nor its individual countries are directly involved in this conflict,” underlined the political scientist.
Maybe Baerbock just said the quiet part out loud…
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