Germany’s Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (Greens), well-known at this point for her hawkish rhetoric, has said that Germany and the collective West are “fighting a war against Russia,” calling for cohesion among Western partners in disagreements over tank deliveries to Ukraine.
In her statements, which took place on Tuesday, January 24th place during the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, France, Foreign Minister Baerbock, who on numerous occasions throughout the nearly year-long Russo-Ukrainian war has shown herself to speak with a loose tongue, called on European allies to refrain from putting the “blame on one another,” Die Welt reports.
More ought to be done to ensure Germany supports Ukraine with its German Leopard 2 tanks, the foreign minister argued several hours before it was revealed to the public that Germany came to the decision to supply Ukraine with these state-of-the-art battle tanks, as The European Conservative reported.
“But the most important thing is that we do it together and that we don’t blame each other in Europe,” Baerbock continued, adding that “pointing figures” at one another will “not bring peace or freedom to Ukraine.” In addition to military aid, she too called for increased humanitarian and financial support to be sent to Kyiv.
On Wednesday evening Defense Minister Boris Pistorius (SPD) attempted to walk back his colleague’s statements, denying that Germany’s delivery of its Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine would make it a co-belligerent in the war. He emphasized all allies “including American friends” are on board and therefore Germany is not alone and not the primary opponent of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The collective West’s decision to send advanced battle tanks to Ukraine comes months after repeated requests from President Volodymyr Zelensky, who insists the military hardware is essential to pushing back Russia’s slow but steady advances in the east.
Germany is set to deliver 14 Leopard 2 tanks while the U.S. has pledged to supply 31 M1 Abrams tanks.