SZ podcast SPD & war: Mr. Mützenich, is Willy Brandt rotating in the grave? – Politics

SZ podcast SPD & war: Mr. Mützenich, is Willy Brandt rotating in the grave?  – Politics

After the Russian attack on Ukraine, the SPD also had to change. Instead of security with Russia, the foreign and security policy principles of SPD leader Lars Klingbeil now say: Security before Russia. Rolf Mützenich, SPD parliamentary group leader in the Bundestag, was shaped by Willy Brandt and his “change through rapprochement”, the German policy of detente during the Cold War.

Because of Brandt’s policy of détente, the SPD must “not throw itself in the dust and apologize,” says Mützenich in an interview with the SZ. Rather, she “overcame a highly dangerous situation in a peaceful manner”. This is “a global political achievement that will hopefully keep Willy Brandt in his grave.” Of course, “Ukraine is defending itself against Russian aggression,” says Mützenich. “That’s why we also support them in their right to self-defense under the United Nations Charter.”

However, the policy of detente “still has its justification”, even if the aggressor is not listening. The trust destroyed by the Russian leadership “needs to be dealt with”. The SPD had started a process of setting up a new program. It is not only about “military security” but also about “diplomacy, disarmament, arms control and the further development of international law”.

“Deterrence,” says Mützenich, is “not the sole principle.” In the case of the Russian attack on Ukraine, it was also “unsuccessful”. The SPD politician considers the possibilities for the expansion and escalation of the war to be great, also because of possible misunderstandings. “That’s why it’s good that the Chancellor also occasionally calls President Putin.” In any case, he would “continue to encourage the chancellor to react calmly to the situation.”

The SPD parliamentary group leader says that rhetoric must also be disarmed. “I shudder when I hear ‘warfare’ instead of ‘defense capability’ in the public debate.” These are words that remind him of the Cold War. “If we no longer have our language under control, we always create exceptional situations in society that repeatedly bring us to the brink of great risks.” Mützenich: “We’re helping Ukraine with its right to self-defense. But we’re not waging war against an aggressor. If we were waging this war, I’m afraid we wouldn’t be having this conversation anymore.”

The text of the events at the Picture do you think …? Find here.

The editorial deadline for this program was Friday, March 17, 2023 at 5 p.m.

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