Maybrit Illner TV Column: ‘What the USA Shouldn’t Do – We Shouldn’t’

‘Maybrit Illner’ TV column: Ukraine talks about ‘Illner’: ‘We Germans are not making ourselves more famous right now’

Putin’s war creates new front lines every day – also in German politics. Some greens become olive and like to roll tanks towards Russia. “This is crazy,” said a former soldier of all people. At least Sigmar Gabriel is still Sigmar Gabriel: “I didn’t apologize!”

Defensive is the new word to swear. This shows how aggressive Putin’s war has already pushed the tipping point in people’s minds. ‘Putin’s offensive’ is the topic of ZDF talk on Thursday – and Maybritt-Ellner continues: ‘Germany is still defensive?’ The sun is also clear tonight: ‘Defensive Germany’ is suddenly no longer meant to be a compliment in 2022. The once pacifist Greens wear an almost militaristic olive green and wish German tanks could roll toward Russia – even Anton Hofriter is already putting on his helmet Steel on his long hair.

Getting started is emotional. Marina Weisband is connected, German-Ukrainian and Green Party member. “I had very severe interruptions,” Weisband says of phone calls to friends and family in the other home country. “I myself am confused by the actions of the German government – we are not making ourselves very popular at the moment.” A little later her eyes became wet: “I want peace for my family in Ukraine. I want peace for my family in Germany.”

“100 Leopard tanks will never reach eastern Ukraine”

Everyone definitely agrees on this goal. How to get there is still controversial. CDU defense expert and retired colonel Rodrich Kiziotter very clearly demands that Germany supply Ukraine with heavy weapons – even if he mumbles a little on the issue of battle tanks, because he clearly does not want to commit himself too much. Eric Fad explains that “delivery of combat tanks is now irrational from a military point of view.”

The former brigadier general and military adviser to Angela Merkel also justified this by the fact that “100 Leopard tanks will never reach eastern Ukraine, and Russia will prevent them.” For Fad, this “has no military or operational significance whatsoever – this is a mock discussion we’re having.”

Greens and the Army: This is crazy!

But it is precisely this debate that is simmering – also this evening and also in this debate. Marina Weisband and security expert Claudia Major want to prepare Ukraine for a military victory. Eric Vad is sure that even Ukrainian military experts will not advise their government to invest the billion euros made available by Germany in the purchase of battle tanks.

And then the retired brigadier general gets angry: “It annoys me when German politicians from the Green Party present military solutions as the ultimate goal. This is crazy. This is what politicians who have nothing to do with the military, who have refused to do military service, do. We cannot use a proxy war in Central Europe for years. It could potentially escalate into a nuclear war.”

“I don’t think Ukraine will give up territory”

Sigmar Gabriel is very happy to undertake such analyzes. The former vice chancellor and former foreign minister praises: “I am grateful to have a true military expert there.” And Gabriel points out that other countries don’t want to do what they’re asking Germany to do either. After all, the United States and Great Britain do not offer battle tanks either. His advice is simple but firm: “Anything the United States doesn’t do, we shouldn’t do it.”

The foreign policy expert predicts a long-running “frozen conflict” on Ukraine’s soil, which will flare up again and again – and justifies it this way: “I don’t think Ukraine will give up part of its territory Mr. Putin” his pessimistic prediction: “I don’t think it will end anytime soon We will have to support Ukraine for a long time.”

Gabriel insists: “I didn’t apologize!”

This is Gabriel’s view of the future. His view of the past: “It is madness to denigrate everyone today. That everyone who spoke to Russia is now on the verge of becoming a war criminal – this is outrageous.” The former foreign minister attaches importance to the statement: “I did not apologize!”

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