In the darkest days of 1940 and 1941, during the Blitzkrieg and the Battle for Britain, Germany demanded one thing: Unconditional Surrender.
The invasion of the British Isles was called Operation Sea Lion and it was about to commence to end democracy and the lives of free people.
And today in the new Battle for Britain there may be no bombs dropping or dogfights in the air but the barbs coming from Berlin and Brussels over Brexit amount to virtually — the same thing.
It is called in German: er hat alles bezahlt, zurückzahlen,
After last week’s last minute negotiations with the EU over the terms and costs of the Brexit divorce, British Prime Minister Theresa May, or Theresa the Appeaser as she is now called in London, has unlike the wartime hero Winston Churchill—thrown in the towel and capitulated to the EU onslaught.
Top German MEP Hans-Olaf Henkel, himself a former head of the Federation of German Industries (BDI), said he believes that Berlin — like Michel Barnier and Guy Verhofstadt wanted “unconditional surrender” from Britain on everything from the ECJ to the divorce bill (over $50 billion).
Indeed, there is sufficient reason to believe that Angela Merkel’s overly dominant Germany is the real reason for the demise of the critical and long-lasting transatlantic alliance and the fallout over the UK Brexit.
German culture, as evidenced in the recent election, is an odd combination of pride and penance. Germans cannot resolve their deep inner conflict, which is submerged and crosses generational lines, even if they do not or cannot mention Mein Kampf or the unspeakable name.
Germany may appear uncomfortable in its own skin, as well it should. The tormented minds — adrift between schmerz and angst — exhibit a high degree of what psychoanalysts used to refer to as “repression;” except that it is not all that repressed any longer.
Today strident Germany is the decidedly dominant reunited bullying European power—in every sense of the term. It can’t help itself. It demands surrender from puny Britain.
The Iron Chancellor (who is referred to as Mutti in German or Mom) has the chance to push all of Europe, indeed the rest of the world around. You see, Germany is no longer a defeated, reluctant, insignificant power. Instead, it lurks mightily now as it strove to do in 1939. Its invasion over these past few years just takes other forms. But do not be misled; it is all the same — an invasion.
Ironically, Germany is also the biggest NATO laggard at 1.2 percent, even though it has the most robust economy on the continent and a huge current account surplus of over $285 billion, the largest in the world. In effect, American taxpayers, by paying so much (70 percent of the current NATO budget) are subsidizing European, and particularly the German welfare state. Such free riding can’t continue and we need to read them the riot act and not just about cheating on Volkswagen emissions.
Germany nunc has realistically become the dangerous Ubermencsh that Wagner proclaimed.
It is most noteworthy how stubborn Mrs. Merkel adroitly played her anti-American card throughout her tedious reelection campaign. She said: ”Europe must stay united because it cannot fully count on the US.” Her Socialist, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sigmar Gabriel (a Putin crony), said in no uncertain terms that Trump is “a threat to peace and prosperity.” She takes a similar view of Britain as an insignificant island apart from Europe, no longer a party to her European scheme.
Germany wants to be on a collision course—politically, socially and economically, even if it is a weakling militarily. It is also clear that it is totally dependent on Russian energy. In fact, Germany’s former Chancellor, Gerhard Schroder, is the very chairman of Gazprom.
While notable German magazines (Der Spiegel and Die Stern) despicably portray a severed Trump head and a Weak PM May on their covers—Germany marches to its own and dangerous drumbeat dragging the entire EU along.
Merkel calls the shots and has said she wants an integrated, unified and federal EU with Germany at the helm and always benefitting from the euro play. In all honesty, that’s what the euro is — a German ploy for its export=led growth.
Did you know that Merkel was in fact born Angela Kazmierczak and is part Polish? Her grandfather was a Ludwig Kazmierczak, born 1896 in Poznan – then part of the German Reich. The family was proud of its Polish roots. After WWII however they changed their name and moved. She ended up residing in the DDR—the Soviet part of (East) Germany, where she was raised speaking Russian, as a pacifist Lutheran pastor’s daughter.
Merkel’s values are therefore very divided—as was Germany itself. She embodies in ways the dark soul of Germany’s anguished history. But underneath the boring demeanor is a will to power—a German ambition to reign supreme.
Gone are the common Atlantic values of the past. Peace, security and economic growth are sacrificed for raw German ambition camouflaged in European clothing.
Germany is in effect becoming a defacto powerhouse. What it could not win militaristically in the last war it is nonetheless achieving in a not so secret attempt to takeover Europe and all its institutions, money, and culture, using the façade of the EU as its Trojan horse.
Decades ago a cabinet minister to Margaret Thatcher named, Nicholas Ridley, was forced to resign after he said the EU was “a German racket designed to take over the whole of Europe.” He went on to lament that giving up sovereignty to that body was as bad as giving it up to Hitler. Back then such language caused shock—today it is as obvious as Wiener schnitzel und apfel strudel.
In turns out the British television series SS-GB may not be so fictitious after all. In that plot it is November 1941, nine months after a successful German invasion of Britain. Winston Churchill has been executed. King George is a prisoner and has not been seen in public for some time. His wife and his daughters Elizabeth and Margaret escaped, while the Duke of Windsor, who had earlier abdicated as Edward VIII, is in exile. A British government in exile exists but is not recognized. Swastikas furl in the wind all over London—the Germans run things.
Fast-forward in time to non-fiction, today, before it is too late the US and UK, Europeans too, have to step up and call Germany what it is.
The transatlantic alliance in this century demands honesty and burden sharing as well as common principles and purpose. If Germany is not on board it can go it alone, realizing the US will no longer pay for it, defend it, protect it, or watch idly as it transforms the continent into a German panzer-like machine and puppet state to which it dictates orders.
Brexit is not about unconditional surrender to a foreign power. Why would Great Britain need to pay off money it does not owe?
European nations of freedom should come to their own conclusions but we cannot appease or deny reality any longer.
Theodore Roosevelt Malloch is a scholar, diplomat and strategist whose memoir is entitled: Davos, Aspen & Yale: My Life Behind the Elite Curtain as a Global Sherpa.