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11 Jan, 2015 11:29

Who’s calling the shots over Merkel’s ‘UN ambitions’?

Who’s calling the shots over Merkel’s ‘UN ambitions’?

Angela Merkel’s policy towards Russia can be explained by her potential desire to become the next UN chief, an ambition which can only be met by following a “policy of appeasement” towards Washington, foreign affairs columnist Nebojsa Malic says.

RT: Recently, Ukraine's Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk made a comment during his visit to Germany - he recalled "the USSR's invasion of Ukraine and Germany." This went unnoticed by official Berlin and remains so even now despite Moscow's request for some reaction. Why, do you think?

NM:There’s no rational explanation for Merkel behaving this way towards Russia, towards the rest of Europe. There’s no rational explanation why she stayed silent following the remarks of the Ukrainian prime minister about World War II. That was a very, very inflammatory remark that she should have reacted to, but she didn’t, because, for whatever reason, speculation here, but it is in the interest of Washington to prop up the current regime in Kiev. So here she is doing what’s in the interest of Washington, as opposed to what’s in the interest of Germany.

RT:All this comes, as rumors circulate that the chancellor could leave office early, and is eyeing the position of UN chief. How could this be affecting her current policies?

NM: What is the next step from being chancellor of Germany for somebody who’s obviously not ready to retire, not ready to relinquish the limelight, not ready to relinquish some sort of power or influence in the world? The rumors in the German newspapers about how she’s eyeing the spot of the UN secretary general, which according to UN custom, belongs next to a European, they fit the entire story, they fit the facts, they fit the behavior.

If Angela Merkel wants to become the next UN secretary general, and we all know that anybody who has incurred the wrath of the United States will not stay long in that position, or even get elected if they don’t have the support of Washington, then the appeasement policy towards Washington, for a lack of a better word, suddenly starts making a whole lot more sense.

Eduardo Munoz Alvarez / Getty Images / AFP

RT:But she is certainly very popular in Germany and yields a great deal of influence. Why would she want to step down?

NM: That’s part of the problem. She is not so popular in Europe. In fact, most Europeans tend to take everything that happens to them as Merkel’s fault, whether it is or isn’t. Her staying on as chancellor for another term might not be politically expedient for her, because it would be ideal for a career politician who wanted to save their reputation and save their skin to go out at the peak of their popularity, and not at the bottom of it.

So by the time this UN election takes place in 2017, she will be nearing the end of her term, it will be a grand exit to a higher plane of political existence, and leave the economic and political mess for someone else to clean up, preferably from her own party. But again, the last election proved there is no other figure strong enough to challenge her.

Supporters of German Chancellor Angela Merkel attend a CDU election rally in Magdeburg, eastern Germany (AFP Photo / Ronny Hartmann)

There is plenty of discontent towards her CDU (Christian Democratic Union) Party, but not enough to actually propel somebody else to the chancellorship. So again, it could be a calculated move to say, “well okay, I’ll leave at the peak of my popularity and escape responsibility for when everything comes crashing down.” Tony Blair did that fairly effectively when he exited and left government to Gordon Brown, and the Labour Party ended up getting trashed in the subsequent elections. But Blair escaped the blame for it, and now he’s a highly paid motivational speaker so to speak; a consultant going around the world, never being called up to account for his crimes.

Or it could be that the speculation in the German media is simply testing the waters, sort of stirring up the pot in German politics, and trying to see what the reaction of the general public would be to the announcement that Merkel might be leaving. Whether that would push forward another political opponent who aspires to her post a little too soon, they’re all legitimate political tactics mind you, but the notion that Merkel might be seeking a promotion so to speak beyond Germany certainly fits with her behavior towards the United States.

RT:How credible are the rumors that Merkel could be leaving in the first place?

NM: I am inclined to believe they are likely to be true just because, again, it fits a pattern of behavior; it certainly helps explain what cannot be explained by rational interest.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.