German policies towards Russia were defined not by some “guilt complex” about WWII and not by pacifism. This explanation just sounds nice. “Yes, we have made some stupid decisions, but it is because we are good people!”
German Russophilia is not a product of guilt; it is not a manifestation of pacifism. It is even not entirely about greed and profit. It is about imperialism. We can even talk about an “imperial,” not “imperialistic” way of thinking.
Eastern Europe was divided between Empires: the German Reich, Austria-Hungary, Russia, and in some way, the Ottoman Empire. Now there are only Russia and Germany, which dominates the EU (and Erdogan is trying to make some neo-Ottomanist comeback).
The future of Eastern Europe has been and in many ways still is defined by the Empires, not by Eastern Europeans themselves.
Empires are easily “accepted” as they are, even if they do awful and inhumane things to their own people and neighbors. And former vassal states have to behave in an ideal way to deserve an acceptance and a right to sit at the same table with “real people.”
Here’s a good example: Russian diplomats, literally, defecate on stage and rub their shit in the faces of EU politicians. Their behavior is more insulting than any GG Allin performance. They advocate war crimes and genocide, and they have done it for many years.
Russians can behave as they wish, and they still get respect and dialogue. Ukrainian diplomats are being tone policed.
Russian officials openly say they don’t believe that Ukraine is a real country. Sadly, they think the same in Germany, just don’t state it so bluntly. They still believe that such a concept as “Russian zone of interests” is legit. They forget that real people live in this “zone.”
That’s why Lindner wanted to wait a few days for the defeat of Ukraine. He did not imagine that Ukraine could fight back, “a vassal state” could not defeat an “Empire.”
It is not about military expertise; it is about the failure to accept Ukraine as an independent entity.
After Russia invaded Ukraine, German Finance Minister Christian Lindner "with a polite smile" told Ambassador Melnyk that Ukraine had only a few hours left, soi t was "senseless" to supply weapons to Kyiv & disconnect Russia from SWIFT, Melnyk told FAZhttps://t.co/Ueem68nLMz
— Euromaidan Press (@EuromaidanPress) March 30, 2022
And now, when the Ukrainian army beats the Russians in the field and on the sea, Germany also feels hurt. The very idea of the fellow Empire being defeated and dismantled is very traumatic for Germans.
That’s why they are so pissed about Zelenskyy’s attitude towards Steinmeier. The Comedian did not just violate diplomatic protocols or some good manners rules. He broke the hierarchy of vassals and masters.
The most insulting thing was to meet representatives from Poland and the Baltic states, while great and powerful Germany was left out. These Ukrainians are killing Russian soldiers better than anybody in history. They don’t respect other Empires as well. What’s next? Anarchy?
Alexandr Wolodarskij is a game developer and blogger/columnist
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