More sanctions and weapons: ex-NATO chief calls for “German leadership”

More sanctions and weapons
Ex-NATO chief calls for ‘German leadership’

In the war in Ukraine, Germany’s wavering attitude was criticized. He is also followed by former NATO Secretary General Rasmussen. He not only demands more heavy weapons from Berlin, but also new sanctions against Russia.

Former NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen criticized the German government’s caution in the face of Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine. Germany is “too hesitant to deliver heavy weapons and impose sanctions”, Rasmussen told the Handelsblatt newspaper.

“Of course, Germany is heavily dependent on Russian gas imports, but I think a clear position from the federal government would change the whole dynamic in Ukraine. We need German leadership,” Rasmussen said. The Dane served as his country’s prime minister from 2001 to 2009 and secretary general of the transatlantic military alliance from 2009 to 2014.

Rasmussen also called on Europeans to immediately stop importing oil and gas from Russia. “It is certain that an energy embargo will have a price. But compared to the cost of a prolonged war, this price would be low,” he argued.

The expansion is ‘a real strengthening of the alliance’

The biggest risk is a war of attrition, Rasmussen said. “The Russians are experts at playing with unresolved conflicts. We see it in Georgia, Moldova and the Donbass region of Ukraine, which they invaded in 2014. We must do what is necessary to quickly resolve this conflict.” The most effective way is to stop funding Putin’s war machine – and that requires a freeze on all oil and gas imports.

Rasmussen viewed the northward expansion of NATO through the membership requested by Sweden and Finland as a historic step and a real strengthening of the alliance. “Finland has one of the strongest armies in Europe, powerful artillery and the number of soldiers, not to mention the reserves, is incredibly high. Sweden has a powerful air force and significant naval capabilities. ” So both countries would “contribute a lot”, Rasmussen said. “They will increase NATO’s defense capability – especially as it relates to the Baltic states.”

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