German President Joachim Gauck says his country must play a much greater role in the international arena, and must take on more responsibilities in the world.
“We must not think we can be protected from political, economic, ecological and military conflicts if we do not participate in their resolution,” Gauck said on the 23rd anniversary of Germany™s reunification on October 3.
He added, “I cannot imagine Germany making itself big by dictating its conduct to others, but I also cannot imagine Germany making itself small to avoid taking risks and solidarity.”
“Our country is not an island,” Gauck pointed out.
The German president further noted that the Berlin government should ask itself if it was taking on enough of its responsibilities in regard to its neighbors in the East, in the Middle East and in the southern Mediterranean.
Germany, which is the euro zone’s most powerful economy and enjoys the lowest sovereign borrowing costs, has been steering Europe through the debt crisis for the last four years.
Although the country boasts a strong economy, its reluctance and unwillingness to take charge of global affairs, especially since it is one of NATO’s biggest members, has been a matter of concern beyond Europe.
“There’s a lot of frustration in Washington with Germany’s reluctance to take on a bigger role in international security affairs in particular,” Chris Chivvis, a political scientist at the global policy think tank RAND Corporation, said.
He added, “There’s a sense sometimes, rightly or wrongly, that Germany occasionally allows its history to become an excuse for not taking on responsibilities that are expected of a country with its wealth and, frankly, its global interests.”
Germany supported the 1999 bombing of Serbia during the Kosovo crisis, and agreed to send troops to Afghanistan in fall 2001.
Germans, however, refused to join the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq, and the military strikes that toppled former Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi in October 2011.
Copyright: Press TV