Monday, November 16, 2020
French President Macron is unusually openly critical of the German Defense Minister’s European views. Kramp-Karrenbauer committed a “misinterpretation” when it made Europe’s security dependent on the protective power of the USA. Fortunately, the Chancellor sees it differently.
French head of state Emmanuel Macron has criticized statements by Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, according to which she is skeptical of the idea of Europe’s strategic independence. “I think that’s a misinterpretation of the story,” said the 42-year-old with unusual frankness in an interview with the Parisian magazine “Grand Continent”. With a view to Angela Merkel, he added: “Fortunately, the German Chancellor is not following this line, if I understand it correctly.”
Immediately before the US presidential election on November 3rd, Kramp-Karrenbauer published a guest article on the Internet portal “Politico” entitled “Europe still needs America”. The CDU politician wrote there that the “illusions of European strategic autonomy” had to end. “The Europeans cannot replace the decisive role of the USA in guaranteeing security.”
Macron disagreed with this assessment. The United States would only accept the Europeans as allies “if we take ourselves seriously and if we are sovereign in our own defense,” he said. The declared European friend Macron has long called for a “European army”.
Macron does not name AKK
In the interview he only spoke of the “German Defense Minister” and did not mention Kramp-Karrenbauer by name. The President did not go into detail about what she said in the guest post. On request, it was confirmed from those around him that his criticism explicitly refers to the “Politico” contribution from the beginning of the month.
On Monday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo also arrived in Paris, where he wants to meet with Macron. The meeting took place at Pompeo’s request and “in complete transparency with the team of the elected US President Joe Biden,” stressed Macron’s office. Like Trump, Pompeo still refuses to accept the election defeat.