The left has to decide for itself whether to define conditions that it either cannot meet or that obstruct its ability to govern with any partner. “
In an interview with the Tagesspiegel on Sunday, the chairman of the left-wing parliamentary group in the Hessian state parliament, Janine Wissler, who is running for party chairmanship with her Thuringian colleague Susanne Hennig-Wellsow, categorically ruled out such deployments: “I see, unlike other questions, no possibility of compromise, ”said Wissler. “
The left will not join a government that decides to deploy abroad. She is “a consistent peace party”.
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In contrast, the Thuringian Left Party and parliamentary group leader, Susanne Hennig-Wellsow, was open to peacekeeping missions under the umbrella of the United Nations in the joint interview. “I can imagine certain classic blue helmet missions, like in Cyprus, for example,” she told Tagesspiegel. Such missions have to be looked at “in individual cases”. At the same time, Hennig-Wellsow campaigned for the left to see governance as an opportunity.
The party must “make a clear commitment to responsibility”.
A hot potato for the Greens too
If the numbers are enough after the next federal election in September, a change of government and a left-of-center federal government would only be conceivable as a three-party coalition – the “R2G” combination of the Greens, the SPD and the Left. In the latest survey by Infratest dimap at the beginning of February, the Greens were in second place behind the Union with 21 percent approval, the SPD would come to 15, the Left to 6 percent. Despite the large programmatic overlaps of the three: In foreign and military policy, the left stands in clear contrast to its possible partners.
The issue of foreign missions is also a hot topic for the Greens, the party, whose roots go back to the peace movement of the post-war and especially the 1980s, sees itself, like the Left, as a peace party. On the other hand, she had her experience of conversion behind her during her first government participation in the Schröder cabinets from 1998 to 2005. At that time, Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer swore his parliamentary group to say yes to the war in Yugoslavia.
The SPD had withdrawn from its previously valid no to so-called “out-of-area”, i.e. deployments outside the NATO area, as early as 1992.
A change in leadership has shifted the balance in the SPD
The Green Party leader Annalena Baerbock pointed out on Sunday on Deutschlandfunk that the Bundeswehr’s mandates for the Afghanistan mission, for example, had been “always sharply criticized” because they were accompanied by the tolerance of US attacks with armed drones and killings against international law . That is why the Greens “did not agree to them in the past. You have “always abstained over the years”.
However, there was also strong support in their group: In the last extension of the mission in Afghanistan, 17 Green MPs voted in favor, 28 against and twelve abstained. Group leader Katrin Göring-Eckardt recently even campaigned for military operations without a UN mandate.
In the SPD, with new leaders in the party and parliamentary group, the balance on security issues has shifted to the left. Rolf Mützenich, parliamentary group leader in the Bundestag since summer 2019, has always been a sharp critic of the Afghanistan operations and the stationing of US nuclear weapons in Germany. In his doctoral thesis he devoted himself to nuclear weapon-free zones in international politics.
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