On March 30 Germany declared the important Lebanese political group, Hezbollah, to be a “terrorist” organization and banned it from German soil. By doing so it gratuitously increased the tension in the eastern Mediterranean and exposed Berlin’s lack of credibility on the world stage.
Is it really in Germany’s interest to destabilize a region that has already been crippled by multiple wars? On the surface Germany doesn’t appear to have a stake in the politics of Lebanon. Indeed, from whatever angle the situation is viewed from, Germany qua Germany doesn’t have a meaningful stake in Lebanon. Yet Berlin is assaulting the sovereignty of this small Mediterranean nation that means no harm.
Hezbollah is an organization that forms 10% of the current Lebanese parliament and is a significant part of Lebanon’s governing coalition. Because of its commitment to international justice, Hezbollah is, in fact, Lebanon’s most recognizable political group. And that’s the point. Hezbollah’s successful efforts to defend the sovereignty of Lebanon in the past decades, and the sovereignty of Syria in recent years, is a problem for that power which aims to destroy the sovereignty of both Lebanon and Syria. However, that power isn’t Germany, so what then explains Berlin’s hostility towards Beirut?
Germany is doing someone’s bidding. Germany’s problem is that it’s foreign policy is stuck in the late 20th century. At present, Germany’s political structure is stuck in post World War Two Europe. Ever since the Nazis were defeated in 1945, Germany has been a cutout. To begin with, it was either a Soviet or an American cutout. But when the Soviets had the decency to exit Germany in “1989”, the Americans remained. As a consequence, in the 21st century German independence is still an aspiration rather than a reality.
According to Deutsche Welle (DW), in 2019 there were “roughly 38,600” American soldiers based in Germany. “This is…more military personnel than the US keeps in any other country except Japan.” In other words, whether it likes it or not, Germany is a key part of American geopolitics. As DW explains:
“Germany’s strategic importance for the US is reflected by the location of US European Command (EUCOM) headquarters in the southwestern city of Stuttgart, from which it serves as the coordinating structure for all American military forces across 51 primarily European countries.”
And the purpose of EUCOM? “The mission of EUCOM is to protect and defend the US..” It’s purpose is not to defend the interests of Germany but the interests of the USA.
EUCOM though is only the overt dimension of US power in Germany. As intimidating and oppressive as EUCOM is, it is less sinister than the covert dimension of US power in Berlin and beyond. To bend German politicians and opinion towards warmongering in west Asia requires a level of deceitfulness that is too subtle for the straightforward American war machine. This need for sly covert action is the raison d’être of America’s Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). And Germany is as much under the control of the CIA as it is under the control of EUCOM. The evidence is the illogical German decision to make Hezbollah illegal.
The evidence is the fact that Germany’s “foreign” secret service, the Bundesnachrichtendienst (the BND), which reportedly has 300 bases inside and outside Germany, was a CIA creation. This means that infamous spymasters, like Allen Dulles (CIA/Nazi sympathizer) and Reinhard Gehlen (Nazi/CIA), developed a covert system within Germany in the late 1940s and 1950s – a system that continues to function surreptitiously today.
Recent evidence of this insidious CIA activity in Germany includes the US bugging of Germany’s prime minister, Angela Merkel (revealed in 2013); the US/German creation of a Swiss front company (Crypto AG) to spy on world governments (revealed in 2020); and the manipulation of German media, as revealed in the book Presstitutes Embedded in the Pay of the CIA (2019), by Udo Ulfkoette. All of which confirms the claims made by CIA whistleblower Philip Agee in the 1970s. For example, in a 1976 interview with the German magazine Informations Dienst he stated:
“Since World War II, the aim of US foreign policy has been to guarantee the coherence of the western world under the leadership of the USA. CIA activities are directed toward achieving this goal….Left opposition movements had to be discredited and destroyed….After World War II, West Germany was a crucial area. In order to secure US interests there, the CIA supported not only the CDU (Christian Democratic Union) but also the SPD (Social Democratic Union) and the trade unions. The CIA wanted the influence of the two major political parties to be strong enough to shut out and hold down any left opposition…..Most CIA stations pay journalists to publish the CIA’s propaganda as if it were the journalist’s own work….”
And how does Hezbollah fit into this CIA / German matrix? Its an official US enemy. And so, ipso facto, its an official German “enemy”. As a key part of the “axis of resistance” (Lebanon, Syria and Iran) that’s fighting US imperialism in west Asia, Hezbollah has been in the crosshairs of Washington DC for sometime. Hence the March 2019 Aljazeera headline: “[US] Tells Lebanon to Choose Hezbollah or Independence”. A headline which can also be read: “US Tells Germany to Criminalize Hezbollah”.
The big geopolitical picture is, of course, the grand chessboard that stretches across the Eurasian landmass. On the western edge of this “world island” the US is anchored in Germany. And on the eastern side the US is anchored in Japan. The aim of US imperialism is to control or contain everything in between – primarily Russia and China. And in this US “game” of control and containment, the oil fields and pipelines in west Asia (the eastern Mediterranean) are fundamental.
Germany’s decision to criminalize Hezbollah is a part this great US “game”. As a key American base on the Eurasian landmass, the “mighty“ Germany is nothing but a pawn in the hands the US. This “German decision”, therefore, is in reality an American decision – a decision managed by America’s covert warriors: the CIA. The problem for the USA and Germany, however, is that the “game” is now so obvious that whatever decision is made lacks power and meaning.
Aidan O’Brien is a hospital worker, Dublin, Ireland.