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Tag: Germany

Solidarity or death: what are the real challenges for German and EU civil society regarding Russia?

The Kremlin has placed many repressive measures on Russian civil society. These moves are largely based on encouraging self-censorship and dividing the sector into ‘good’ and ‘bad’ organisations. This process has had a devastating effect on public policy and has caused a crisis of representation at all levels. Despite this, the Kremlin appears eager to use these same measures outside the country in order to divide civil societies across the EU states.

August 27, 2021 - Anastasiia Sergeeva

The ongoing German-Polish NATO nuclear sharing nexus 

The future of NATO’s nuclear sharing programme in Central and Eastern Europe is closely connected to the political relationship between Washington, Berlin and Warsaw. Dimensions such as geopolitics and infrastructure must also be taken into account.  

July 1, 2021 - Aaron Allen

Nord Stream 2. Strictly business or wider threat?

Ukraine’s gas transmission system is one of the most extensive networks of gas pipelines in the world. The role of the Ukrainian system, in the functioning of the pan-European gas transit infrastructure, is extremely important in the strategic economic and energy security contexts of life in Europe.

When we talk about Nord Stream and Nord Stream 2, we cannot consider these large-scale projects in economic terms alone. What is more, from the point of view of financial and technical indicators, they are not justified. The capacity of the Ukrainian gas transmission system (GTS) at the entrance is 281 billion cubic meters per year with an output of 146 billion m3 per year. Almost 50 per cent of natural gas from Russia to European countries until 2019 was transported via the Ukrainian GTS. Today, unfortunately, the situation is not the same.

June 23, 2021 - Mykola Voytiv

A fortress of human rights

Europe will either be united or not. It cannot be ruled out that an unforeseen event may lead to the disintegration of the EU. But it can also not be ruled out that an unforeseen event will cement it. Paradoxically, the COVID-19 pandemic, which is currently devastating the global economy, may prove to be such an event.

Prior to the creation of the European Union, Europe did not exist. It did not exist in the political sense, that is. It is true that François Guizot, the 19th century historian and statesman, believed that there is something like a European civilisation because a certain kind of unity permeates European countries despite countless differences dividing them. This unity, however, was manifest only to a select number of Europeans and only through comparisons with the brutally colonised European “Others” across Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Americas. Certainly, the thus conceived civilisational unity did not translate itself into political unity. The geographical concept of Europe made political sense only as an unstable system of volatile states linked more frequently, and tightly, by their mutual hostilities than their alliances.

June 23, 2021 - Adam Chmielewski

Make yourself at home

The German city of Görlitz on the border with Poland is learning the challenges of integrating migrant communities. Thanks to the help of local activists, a lot of progress has been achieved in the last several years. Yet, the effects of the pandemic and rising social tensions has threatened to undo some of the important achievements.

June 22, 2021 - Joanna Urbańska

Along with Swab Germans in Georgia

The year 2017 marked the 200th anniversary since the first German settlers (mainly Wurttemberg Swabs) showed up in Georgia. A number of factors contributed to this migration. However, Wurttemberg’s internal affairs, such as constant warring conditions, increased taxes and economic hardship, played major roles. Moreover, the increased discontent towards the Lutheran church strengthened religious protests that sent the population searching for new homes. Even though, the Swab presence ended by the hands of those who had originally invited them, and much of its historical remains have been conquered by nature, their legacy continues to capture people’s hearts and minds in Georgia.

September 16, 2020 - Bacho Chubinidze

The challenge of commemoration. Cases from Poland and Germany

The Second World War remains one of the most painful and conflicting episodes of the European nations’ memories. Present conflicts are embedded in history and in the use of history as a political tool. The cases of Poland and Germany illustrate how challenging it can be to commemorate history, especially in a politicised environment.

In Poland during the communist period and until 1989, it was nearly impossible to openly talk about the Second World War. First, due to friendship with the Soviet Union and later, after the fall of communism, Poland was busy creating its own government, introducing the democratic culture and fighting with an economic crisis in order to transform the country it became between 1989 and 2000. After this period, history and commemoration events started to play a very important role for the national and political identity of the country. Like in other Central and Eastern European states, Poland is an example of how history is used as a political tool in the museum narratives and exhibition forms, which also trigger conflicts.

September 3, 2020 - Kristina Smolijaninovaitė

Polish and German views on Ukraine and the conflict in Donbas

You are invited to participate in the next debate in the framework of the project titled “Ost/Wschód: German-Polish Debates on the East”. This time, we want to focus on Ukraine and on the armed conflict in the Eastern part of the country. The debate will be streamed live on June 23 2020 at 18.00 CET.

June 23, 2020 - New Eastern Europe

Debate: What are Polish / German views on the East?

May 13th 2020 / 16.00 CET: We cordially invite you to take part in the inaugural debate in the framework of the project titled “Ost/Wschód: German-Polish Debates on the East”.

May 8, 2020 - New Eastern Europe

Evolution of memory policy in Germany

When it comes to memory of the Second World War, Germany is regarded as the world champion of reprocessing. Yet German memory politics has never been free from controversy. This is especially true for the past few years which saw national-conservative parties questioning the consensuses that had been worked out in the course of the past 75 years.

Prior to Germany’s unification in 1990, the official memory of the Second World War developed differently in the two German states. The first period that marked a divergence in memory was that of the Allied occupation which lasted from 1945 to 1949. This was followed by a long period when both states built their own narratives of the Nazi past, and created their own response to the guilt for the committed crimes. With unification came a consensus that is now at risk of being undermined.

April 6, 2020 - Christoph Meissner

To Macron or not to Macron?

When Frank-Walter Steinmeier, the former foreign minister and now federal president of Germany, once tried to describe Germany’s role in Europe; he called it the “chief facilitating officer”. France’s newfound role under Macron now seems to be that of Europe’s “disrupter-in-chief”. That these two roles do not necessarily match is no surprise.

January 28, 2020 - Liana Fix

Germany’s Weimar Republic: A narrative of ambiguity

Modernisation appeared to spell economic deprivation for large segments of the Weimar Republic’s society. They felt threatened by uncertainties; in fact, hopes and expectations about the future were disrupted. Aggression turned against democratic institutions and minorities depicted as scapegoats.

On October 15th 1929, the Fritz Lang film Woman in the Moon premiered at the Ufa-Palast am Zoo in Berlin. The cinema’s façade had been redesigned for the event. Launched from a skyscraper silhouette, a spaceship replica shuttled back and forth to the moon against the backdrop of a starry sky simulated by hundreds of light bulbs. Offering tantalising visions of future technology – not quite unlike Bauhaus architecture with its twin promise of functionalist building and re-styled urban life, it conveyed the impression of epitomising a cosmopolitan republic that eagerly embraced modernity.

November 12, 2019 - Rainer Eisfeld

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