In view of Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine and the tensions with China and Iran, the CDU and CSU are increasing the pressure on the traffic light to present the national security strategy that has been announced several times. "In the next week of the session, we will submit a leading motion to the German Bundestag in which we call on the federal government to present a national security strategy and to set up a national security council in a timely manner," announced the head of the Union faction and CDU chairman Friedrich Merz in an interview with WELT ON SUNDAY on.
In the motion, which is to be debated in parliament next Friday, the Union calls on the federal government to "resolve such a concept promptly". In it, Germany's "values should be defined as the basis for politics, and the relationship with China, Russia and other actors who question the international rule-based order should be described," as the paper says, which is available exclusively to WELT AM SONNTAG .
A National Security Council must be set up in the Chancellery, which will take over operational control of foreign and security policy and coordinate the updating and implementation of the strategy. In addition, the NATO goal of spending at least two percent of gross domestic product on defense should be established.
"So far, the federal government has refused to even discuss its ideas on national security strategies in the Bundestag," criticizes Merz. "With our application we are ending this silence." Originally, the traffic light wanted to present the strategy in its first year of government, which ended in December. A date in February that had been planned in the meantime also fell through.
The main point of contention is where the Security Council should be located. The SPD-led Chancellery and the Foreign Office, headed by Green Party politician Annalena Baerbock, have long claimed the overarching body for themselves.
In the meantime, at least one draft strategy is classified as classified in the departmental vote. However, crucial points remain unresolved.
The SPD and the Greens now even want to do without the controversial National Security Council. “There is already a committee that coordinates security-related issues. This is the Federal Security Council. I don't understand why structures should be duplicated," says Gabriela Heinrich, deputy leader of the SPD, when asked. “In addition, there is the constitutional question of how a National Security Council could be balanced with the departmental competence of the individual ministries. Both speak against such a body.”
The FDP, meanwhile, insists on its establishment. Your parliamentary group deputy Alexander Graf Lambsdorff says: "For the FDP, the National Security Council is in the election program, because it was clear to us even before the war that the international challenges would increase and not decrease."
He refers, among other things, to the USA. Germany needs “an organization and processes based on the model of other democracies so that the ability to act quickly is ensured even in crisis situations. Far too often, foreign policy decisions are delayed by bureaucratic processes and, worse still, jealousy on the part of the ministries involved,” says Lambsdorff.
Union and FDP receive support from the chairman of the Munich Security Conference, Christoph Heusgen. “The National Security Strategy is an important element for thinking about German foreign and security policy in a more strategic and networked way, for setting priorities and for communicating Germany’s foreign policy goals and interests more clearly internally and externally. However, it is regrettable that, after many years of discussion, the opportunity to set up a National Security Council was again missed,” says Heusgen.
The former security policy advisor to Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) regrets that Germany's foreign policy decision-making apparatus has hardly developed since the 1960s, "while the threat situations around us have become more and more complex and reaction times shorter".
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