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Peace in Europe is possible

With its “European Green Deal”, the EU is attempting to make Europe the first continent to become climate-neutral. The EU should continue to be the driving force on the road to a solar world revolution.

As a leading economic nation and the country with the first renewable energy law, as well as technological advances in energy efficiency and storage technologies, Germany has a role model function. As a first step, a new, binding greenhouse gas reduction target for 2040 should be adopted. In other words, the German Renewable Energy Federation (BEE) proposes a reduction of at least 90-95% compared to 1990. In line with the Paris Agreement, a milestone should also be set for 2035.

“Interim targets are important milestones that provide orientation. It is crucial that these targets are binding across the EU and for each Member State in order to ensure a coherent and efficient approach,” said Simone Peter from BEE. “The greenhouse gas reduction target should be underpinned by ambitious targets for expanding renewable energies and increasing energy efficiency so that it can be achieved on time.”

Who or what is Europe, by the way?

Peace researcher Hans Hedrich gives this answer: “Seven hundred and fifty million inhabitants, ten and a half million square kilometres, a few thousand years of history, ninety languages, fifty countries, one continent: Europe’s diversity is proverbial. Proverbially beautiful, but also proverbially difficult when it comes to living together well and fairly in this diversity. When the difficult becomes too difficult and turns terrible, it is called war. Europe and the Europeans have had a few of these. And then they always found their way back to peace, or at least tried to: 2015, 1995, 1975, 1945, 1815. Maybe 2025 too? Now we ‘have’ this new war in Europe (Ukraine F.A.) and despite our historical experience with war, we still can’t find our way back to peace. What has happened?”

There can and will only be negotiations with the aggressor Putin about Ukraine if the West and NATO are prepared to talk about their mistakes after the end of the Cold War. At the end of the Cold War, NATO had 16 members; today, due to NATO’s eastward expansion, northward expansion and southward expansion, there are 32 members in the Western alliance.

Of course, this development hardly bothers us in the West. But what effect does it have on a power politician like Putin, who must feel encircled? Do we still have the imagination to put ourselves in his shoes? That would be practising “love of our enemies” as Jesus suggested in his Sermon on the Mount. “Love of enemies” does not mean: let them offer you everything. But “loving your enemy” means in very concrete and practical terms: be smarter than your enemy – take the first step towards him!

The first step is a ceasefire, the second is sending UN peacekeepers, the third is peace negotiations and the fourth is a referendum, like in Saarland after the Second World War. Perhaps in about ten years’ time.

Adenauer and De Gaulle had agreed at the time: Saarland would belong to France if the Saarlanders voted accordingly and Germany would then recognise this vote. And vice versa: if the Saarlanders voted in favour of Germany, France would recognise this vote.

Why shouldn’t it be possible between Russians and Ukrainians to do what was possible between Germans and French after centuries of enmity and wars, what my parents used to call “hereditary enmity”? But if, as is the case now, both warring parties do not want to come to the negotiating table, or not yet, because they still hope to gain advantages on the battlefield, then third parties must try to negotiate. This terrible and merciless war must no longer be borne on the shoulders of the Ukrainian people.


FRANZ ALT 2024 | Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator 

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