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it is the only chance for world peace, if Germany gets a seat.. Then Rot-Grün can carry over its many domestic successes to the international scene.
I pray for it..
ROTFL

say this is totally unrelated but I wanted to hear opinions..
I am an American living in Germany - I work for the German subsidiary of a large American firm.
recently a German colleague was flying paper airplanes around the room. He said that he was playing domino day. I blew up.. his 'excuse' was that he heard it at a carnival sitzung.
I really blew up at him.
was I too sensitive? I tried to imagine what would happen if me as an Ami would make jokes about the fire bombing of Dresden. I would never have heard the end of it.

dominio day meaning September 11

Of course, it was only with the signing of the Locarno Treaties that Germany gain admission into the League of Nations...we saw how well and where that ended.

But the Un seems to have this slight problem at present; one which, although just slightly below the public’s and media's radar, it is about to burst upon the scene with a vengeance. And it all begins right here, UN stymied in search for temporary New York home

'Allo...is this the Hague? This is Kofi Annan calling....'

I am definitely against Germany getting a permanent seat at the UN Security Council. This country broke all major international laws when it agreed to the annexation of German Provinces by the USSR and Poland without holding a plebiscite among its own affected population. Germany is today a Socialist nation which is no longer interested to be closely allied with goals of the United States.

Why don't we introduce alternate European seat out of the French one and have it shared by Germany, France, Italy, Spain and other European countries. Each year by another European counry?
Tomaz

@ Tomaz

Sounds good to me. But actually we were just thinking about taking that seat and giving it to a serious country such as Poland, Australia or the Czech Republic...

Germany deserves a seat on the UN Security Council. However, if the German government wants to be treated as a separate country in the UN they should be treated as a separate country in the treaties and pacts that they sign with other UN members.

For example, Germany is allowed to fold their emissions in with former Communist Bloc countries to meet Kyoto goals. Since Kyoto's goals set 1990 as the benchmark, prior to the collapse of dirty Soviet-era smokestack industries, it seems hardly fair that Germany, Poland, the Czech Republic, etc. are being treated as one entity under Kyoto, while being treated as separate entities in the UN.

Amiexpat:

If you want to see how your German colleagues would react to a similar comment about Dresden, now's your chance. Sunday will be the 60th anniversary of the beginning of the firebombing.

If you think it's too "krass" to fly paper airplanes around the office in rememberance, then take the next days to shop around for the worlds tiniest violin. Then you can come to work on Monday with it. At the first mention of Dresden, bust out your tiny violin and start playing for them.

Of course, many of your colleagues, being German, may be afflicted with the lack-of-irony syndrome, so be prepared to describe why the joke is funny in excruciating detail before they get it.

David,

it's Joe SixPack, not sixpack-Joe. Unlike you, I know all about sixpacks. :)

A classic symptom of the "I'm a victim syndrome": the ability to dish it out but not take it.

I've heard Germans wail about the unfairness of the post-WWI Versailles Treaty. But when I respond with the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk (imposed on Russia by Germany in 1917 and far harsher than Versailles), they can't see the connection. After all, Versailles happened to them; Brest-Litovsk happened to the other guy.

amiexpat,

I don't think that he was alluding to 911, but I have no idea what 'Domino Day' is supposed to mean in this context.


Trak77,

I do know about the traety of Brest-Litovsk. It shocked the Allies and paved the way to the Versailles treaty. One difference I can think of: Germany really needed all those railway cars it was demanding from Russia for the war effort, so at least the intention wasn't to put some hurt on Russia. Conversely the FRench reallly needed the money from the Versailles treaty for rebuilding because most of the fighting had happened on its territory.

Speaking of Russia and treaties:

Did your about the Constantinople Agreement?

http://www.britannica.com/eb/article?tocId=9026002

Great Britain and France promised Constantinople to Russia, provided it stayed in the war. Russia could really have needed it for Constantinople controls access to the Black Sea. Czar Nicolas also was kooky enough to think he could turn the place back into Byzantium. :)

I think you need to be serious about security before getting a seat at the big table. At this rate the Germans are behind Australia, Poland, Italy and anyone else who decided to really help out in Iraq and Afghanistan. Selling arms to the Chinese probably isn't the most 'secure' move Germany can make either. In any case, the US and Britain won't negotiate new seats until the current UN scandals are resolved and there is noticable reform at the UN. Of course, Germany probably doesn't think there are problems at the UN.

Scott,

Germany has 4.500 troops in Afghanistan, and had sent 100 commandos to the country when the war on the Taliban started.

As to selling qweapons to China:

I think it's a horrible idea, but Britain is all for it, too:

Straw backs ending China embargo

Ralf:

How long after the real fighting did the 4500 troops arrive?

Did Schroeder not say that if the fighting in Afghanistan escalates, he will recall the 4500 troops? What message do you think that sent to the former Taliban and al-Qaeda holdouts?

I often hear from my German friends about the 4500 troops, but I haven't read about any of the missions they accomplished or any heavy fighting they were involved in.

MfG,
Jose Six-Pack

Jose,

those troops are peace keepers that arrived after the fighting, but we had 100 KSK commmandoes there during the war who acquited thgemselves very well.

As far as the possible withdrawal is concernd: As you well know, Germany doesn't have the capability for power-projection to Afghanistan, so we areally wouldn't have had the means to suppport the troops if they had come under serious attack. We really wouldn't have had a choice in the matter. It pains me to say this, but there you go.

Absolutely, Germany should have a seat at the UN. France, Belgium, Luxembourg and all the others' too! It should be called the "Euro" seat.

January one, every year, a German and a French girl should mud wrestle to see which country gets the U.N. seat that year.

Ralf Goergens:

I’m not sure if you’re being ironic or serious so I’ll assume serious. If so and as you say, the German => French reparations were morally justified because the French really needed the money, then why German bitterness regarding Versailles?

My point is the following:
(1) There’s a worldwide pandemic of victim-hood.
(2) Victim-hood is when injustices committed AGAINST you are treated with exaggeration and righteous indignation whereas equivalent injustices committed BY you are minimized and dismissed.
(3) As mentioned, this phenomenon is not exclusive to the German left. A perfect example is Muslims who are self-righteously indignant about “the Crusades” but conveniently overlook the fact that Islam crusaded in Spain, the Balkans, Egypt, Syria, etc., as long as they were militarily capable of it.
(4) In this specific thread, I was relating victim-hood to the office idiot who makes fun of 9/11 but would be offended to the core if a similar game was made of Dresden.
(5) More generic to this blog, the German left has a bad infection of victim-hood. A perfect example is Rumsfelds “old Europe” comments. The Left exaggerates and is self-righteously indignant about his minor comments but minimizes and dismisses the vitriol they themselves spew.

Regarding the Constantinople Agreement, sure the Entente powers were creating secret treaties (exaggeration and indignation about injustices committed against you)...but Germany was creating just as many treaties with the Central Powers (injustices committed by you are minimized and dismissed). Germany was not a victim of the Constantinople Agreement.

Ralf,

Reference weapons sales to China.

Yes the UK can be all for it. Just as maybe france and russia and china but the US is against it. This is s bit of a problem for germany with its efforts to get a seat on the UNSC.

Or do you think it is not?

Walter,
how is your grandson?

Germany should not receive a permanent seat at the UN, the reasons are numerous.
Germany has cut it's military to the point where they could not even begin to uphold a mandate to send troops into an area of conflict. As far as fighting is concerned, forget about it.
Europe (EU) already has 2 seats, Britain and France. Adding Germany, our future foe, would make it 3 to Americas one. I don't see any justification for it.
There are other countries more worthy. India, Japan, Brazil, to name just a few.

Ralf,

You keep saying this about the might 100. There has never been a report on them doing anything.

And compare the might 100 to any number of nations who have forces in Iraq who have sustained WIA's and KIA's.

Next thing you will want to bring up is the conduct of the peace keeping force in KF. I do not think that went just as planned either.

So what does this say about the efforts and the accomplishments of berlin?

Whether Germany should have a permanent seat on the UN Security Council depends in part on how large a permanent council should be. And on how desireable it is to increase the European domination of the UN, already pronounced.

Of the five permanent members of the current council, three are European. The UK, France, and Russia. The only exceptions are the US and China.

Seems to me that there are a lot of countries which come before Germany. What about Brazil, Japan, India? Why not a Muslim country, possibly Indonesia or Turkey? I favor Turkey myself. And if the EU admits Turkey to the 'club': well there is the third EU seat! It seems to me that any of the four have a more legitimate claim than Germany does.

Not to mention the small matter that given Germany's record over the past 30 years or so, Schroeder and Fischer are politely requesting Bush to slit the US throat by allowing an irresponsible loose cannon of a nation like Germany onto the Securoty Council. As things stand all of the permanent members are more or less serious military powers with a grasp of certain security realities. No matter how nebulous the French understanding is, there are plenty in the French military with a perfectly sound understanding.

Putting Germany on the Council would likely mean a completely irresponsible permanent member. Why would that be good for the UN, unless one wishes the UN to lose all credibility altogether?

Perhaps the US could withdraw from the UN, withdraw from UN all future UN peacekeeping and offer to let Germany have our seat on the Security Council?

Re: Versailles and Brest-Litovsk

First, reparations were a rather common aspect of war-ending treaties before WWII. For example, the Germans imposed reparations on France after the Franco-Prussian War. So there was nothing unprecedented about the fact of reparations.

Second, there undoubtedly was a moral basis for the demand for reparations to France and Belgium (and I think Ralf was intending to be ironic in his comment on the equivalency of Brest Litovsk.) The war in the west was fought almost exclusively on French and Belgian soil, and the direct war damage was tremendous.

Third, the amount of reparations demanded was very high (e.g. the reparations due Great Britain) and enforced by a continuation of the blockade on importing food into Germany until the new German government agreed to Versailles. This greed, mostly French but also British and pursued by means of starving non-combatants after military operations had ended, undercut entirely the moral basis of requiring some reasonable reparations.

Fourth, the Germans had somehow persuaded themselves that the peace would be on the basis of the Fourteen Points. Almost none of the political class realized that Wilson had modified the points as the war continued so that the original 14 points were no longer proposed even by the Wilson administration. And of course the Allies had never accepted the Fourteen Points at all. So the shock that the Germans received when Versailles was presented to them derived from their own self-delusion. (Joe will ask me to please relate German self-delusion with modern day events.)

Fifth, it is impossible to prove, but common sense says that Brest Litovsk was so incompatible with the spirit of the Reichstag Peace Resolution of 1917 that no responsible politician among the Allies could have believed that a peace with Germany built on purely Wilsonian principles would have been effective.

Europe has become so frivolous and silly over the years. I am all for the EU seat. . . just as soon as California gets it's seat. California has a larger economy than most of Europe, a battle hardened National Guard larger than all of Europe's deployable forces. California has a consolidated economy and currency ! ! !

I am simply not yet persuaded about this "New" Europe that has politically "evolved beyond aggression" in it's foreign policy.
Rather, I see a weak continent attempting to make a virtue out of necessity! They can no longer push their will on the world, like they did for 500 years, so now they want to change the definitions.
I would be more impressed with their so called "new evolved way" if they had come upon it on their own. But, the inconvenient fact is -- the current 60 years of peace being enjoyed in Europe (the one they want to share with world) is the first in it's history and was imposed upon them by an outside power!!!

C'mon you crazy kids! Get serious, grow up, the world needs you out there as a mature adult influence, there are plenty of third world nations out there (they don't need you too) playing your current game of, "I'm against everything they are for!"

Tyranno

PS: Did you ever think Europe is going through it's "clinton" years. (ie... a wave of feckless poll followers pretending to be leaders???)

Niko,

Only German soldiers?

1. It's AmeriKKKan.

2. 1 constitution, 1 suprastate, 1 voice, 1 vision, 1 seat in the UN.

Talk to the frogs.

Sebastian H.

You took the words right from my mouth. Let's dismantle the United Dictators now and start from scratch, working towards a United Democracies or some such.


From the article:

Germany and the United States have had little reason to joke around since they had their knock-down, drag-out fight over the potential invasion of Iraq.

Oh, is that what it was? I thought it was more like this;

U.S., "This is what we are going to do and why, do you want to help?"

Germany, "No."

U.S., "Ok."

If the U.N. must continue to exist, the seat should go to Australia.

EU one seat on Security Council, but boot off UK and France and other moribund microstates. India and China should get seats, too. What the hell, give all nations a seat on the Security Council, but restrict access to the General Assembly. While were at it, move the U.N. to Iraq.

It seems that Germany's desire for a Security Council seat is the same as was France's, after WWII. One way to guarantee influence, despite relative weakness, is a seat at the BIG table.

The hand-writing is on the wall... Germany is losing influence among the world's nations. It's losing influence in Europe, itself. It's abandoning its long alliance with the US, again, loss of influence. It plays second-fiddle to France in the EU, at best.

Considering all this, exactly WHAT would Germany bring to the table if it HAD a seat on the Security Council? The voice of Europe? I think we already have that from France, Britain and Russia.

This is NOT about what Germany has to offer, but, what Germany hopes to gain.... the same power that France clings to, waning though it is.

The corollary would be the US advantages in LEAVING the UN. What would the US sacrifice in leaving? Influence? Perhaps some, yet, the US has demonstrated that its ability to act and influence exists OUTSIDE the UN. Where is an example of Germany's ability to do so, either in or out of the UN? Other than locally, within the EU, Germany has no influence to speak of.

There's is no good case to be made for Germany that is not already fulfilled by the present European contingent on the Security Council. One could better make a case to eliminate some Euro seats and include the rest of the world.

Regards,

Should the UNSC really be enlarged to 25 members it would be absurd not to have the third biggest financial contributor at the table (and of course Japan, the second biggest). Germany has thousands of troops on UN missions abroad.

But actually a UNSC of 25 members will even be less effective than the one with 15 members. Except for an "ego trip" Germany might actually be better off without a seat (and the headaches that such a seat bring). Germany could have saved herself a lot of trouble NOT being a member in 2003.

When it really matters the UNSC will not be able to do anything but talk. Germany should reduce its financial contributions and go the Australian way of helping directly.

Germany should get a seat at the Security Council the old-fashioned way:

They should earn it!


On another note: Schroeder could beg for it. That would be fun to watch!

One Seat for all the EU. France and the UK can give theirs up. No seat for Germany. A permanent seat for Indonesia and India .

I am trying to understand how Germany thinks they qualify for a Security Council seat? Being a member of the UNSC means you have to be able to provide security, Germany can't do that. When Serbian Orthodox Churches were attacked and torched in Kosovo German troops stood by with their hands in their pockets.

I think Australia would be a MUCH better choice than Germany. They've repeatedly demonstrated their willingness to be involved in world affairs, to be a responsible nation and they're the best ally anybody could ask for.

OTOH, I don't really give a damn about the UN (except in a negative way) - let Germany have our (US) seat, *provided they pack up and move it someplace else*.

Of ccourse that would mean we'd no longer be a member of the UN so I kind of doubt Australia would be terribly interested anymore.

@ Gabi

I wouldn't take offense at Walter's suggestion (sorry, way up): at least it would make the selection process for the seat more transparent, and to boot even make the UN more serious than it is now. ;-)

Well there really are four options for the UNSC each with good and bad points.

Option 1: Eliminate the UK and french seats on the UNSC. Give one to Japan and give the other to the EU.

Option 2: Make all members who pay say 250 million dollars in dues each year members of the UNSC. This would be kind of like being in the country club. If you fail to pay the minimum each year then you lose your position at the big table.

Option 3: Make everyone a member of the UNSC. This way no nation would feel slighted or left out. Everybody would feel and in fact be important. Some of you I know are thinking well this is foolish. Really it is not, it would have no impact on the operation or the success of the UNSC.

Option 4: Give Germany the US seat. With this seat goes of course the funding of all UN programs to include peace keeping. Also this option would mean the UN would need to move. I think Paris or Berlin would be ideal. They are both centrally located and are wonderful cities. But this would, however, have to be a decision left up to the new members of the UNSC.

Of course, all of you know I like option 4 the best. The timing for this option could not be better as the UN needs a new headquarters.

Where to locate the new headquarters might cause some discourse so I have a plan for that too. Just get Airbus to build how many of their new jumbo jets needed to house the UN. Then the UN could be mobile. It would be like a traveling circus. Nations could bid on hosting the UN for a year or two just like they bid on the Olympics or the World Cup. Think how a nation like Iran would feel knowing the most powerful body in the world would be headquartered there for 2 years. It surely would make them feel important.

Also with being mobile, the UN could immediately fly to whatever the current trouble spot in the world happened to be at the moment. They would be there to direct and coordinate all the necessary actions needed to set things right.


@ Joe

I hope you're being ironic about your preference. The UN cut and ran at the first sign of trouble in Iraq. They don't want to be anywhere near a problem area. As a matter of fact, that's why they felt so safe and cozy in NY.
BTW, I liked your "flying circus" analogy.

Schakal,
Walter's grandson is a soldier in Iraq. I hope he is ok. There was nothing else behind my question.

@ PacRim,

China has already got a seat.
---------------
I think what is really hurting the UNSC is the right of a veto for the five permanent members. Why should France or any country have the right to be able to overturn a decision that goes 14 to 1 against them?

But with the veto-right in place the UNSC will remain a mere talking-shop that has always been ignored by the Great Powers when it suited them. I for one am against Germany paying higher contributions to the UN just to get a seat on a Council that has proven to be ineffective.

So it would appear Phil does not support Option 2 ....

Does Option 4 appeal to you more Phil? Paris in the spring time.. ...

Jay it would appear votes for Option 4...

Paris in the spring time is looking more and more appealing..

One additional point to Option 4. Currently there are no airports within the US that would allow the Airbus Jumbo to land under any but emergency conditions without serious modification to their existing runways. I do not for see at this time any airports planning to make the necessary modifications.

So it would be safe to assume at this point the US would not be in the bidding contest to host the UN traveling circus in the near future.

The option that I am for is to abolish the veto that has been assigned to some arbitrary seats. Alternatively I would suggest getting rid of all undemocratic states in the Council. Syria being able to have a seat on any UN council seems cynical to me.

I'm also in favour of moving the UN to Baghdad after it contributed so mucht to the freedom of the Iraqi people. UN-inspectors would also have to travel less since Iran is right next-door.

Phil,

You are of the opinion the veto power given to the US is arbitrary ?

You did not identify the seats you were refering too. This is for clearification.

@ Gabi

Sorry, I suppose I misunderstood your comment.
Hope he's doing fine.

But I'll still stick to my comment about the UN...

@Joe - absolutely correct on my vote.

I think the US should seriously consider having the UN move to another country. Why should Germany get a seat, why not convert the French seat to the EU seat?

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