Ulrich Speck Profile picture
FP analyst, speaker, advisor. Geopolitical columnist for NZZ. Ex: Carnegie Brussels, Transat. Academy Washington, Elcano Brussels, GMF Berlin, RFE/RL Prague
Sue Strong @strong_sue@mastodon.sdf.org 🇺🇦 Profile picture Birger Leth Profile picture Twitter author Profile picture Brent Gregston Profile picture Magdi Shalash Profile picture 29 subscribed
Jun 3 4 tweets 1 min read
On Ukraine's Nato membership, Washington, Paris and Berlin have not really moved on from the 2008 Bukarest promise that the door is open in principle. Some do package this reality more nicely than others, but on substance they're not (yet?) willing to provide a defense guarantee. Ukraine and its supporters should therefore focus more on the very concrete project to build Ukraine armed forces that are capable of deterring Russia in the future. If Nato is not in the cards (now), they should press Western powers to set up long-term plans for arming Ukraine.
Jun 2 4 tweets 2 min read
On Macron's new rhetoric on Ukraine and Central Europe -- @ilasserre: politico.eu/newsletter/bru… Image @ilasserre It seems Macron has "gradually changed" "over the past few months" primarily because of his ambition to play a leading role in potential peace negotiations regarding Ukraine -- preparing for what he probably sees as a defining moment for Europe.
Jun 1 5 tweets 2 min read
French military support for Ukraine according to the Kiel Institute -- total military commitments. Image And heavy weapons -- crucial to win the war. Image
May 31 9 tweets 2 min read
Interesting how Macron tries to pave a way for him to become a (the?) key negotiator on a potential settlement of the war in Ukraine. The (cost-free) mea culpa towards Central Europeans is part of that.
May 26 4 tweets 1 min read
Chinese message to Europe: decouple from US, move into the Chinese camp, and immediately freeze the war in Ukraine. wsj.com/articles/china… Image Exactly as expected.
May 26 4 tweets 1 min read
Die Scholz-Position zum Krieg in der Ukraine:

Nach einem Rückzug russischer Truppen (wohin auch immer) wird verhandelt; Scholz selbst will mit Putin "zu gegebener Zeit" sprechen; und am Ende steht eine "Vereinbarung" zwischen Moskau und Kiew.

spiegel.de/politik/deutsc… Das dürfte auch zugleich im wesentlichen die Position von Washington, London und Paris sein -- die westlichen Schwergewichte sprechen und handeln derzeit sehr abgestimmt.
May 23 5 tweets 1 min read
Scholz called those who argued that it's possible for Germany to decouple from Russia economically "irresponsible" -- and sided with big business and some economists who saw harsh economic sanctions against Russia as too costly. Yet they were wrong. When Russia cut off gas, "there was no “cascade” of production cuts, bankruptcies and lay-offs from the most energy-intensive industries to the wider economy."
May 21 5 tweets 1 min read
Scholz makes the point that the training of Ukrainian pilots is also "a message to Russia, which is related with all our other activities - that Russia should not bet on the fact that, if it holds out long enough, support for Ukraine will eventually wane". bundeskanzler.de/bk-de/aktuelle… That was also the message Scholz intended to send to Moscow when Zelenskyy was in Germany recently.
May 21 6 tweets 2 min read
The first moment when the European and the Indo-Pacific theaters merged was when Japan's prime minister @kishida230 visited Ukraine in March -- while the Chinese president Xi was in Moscow. The second moment took place now with the G7 summit in Japan, with the visit of the Ukrainian president, with an agenda focused on pushing back against Russia and Ukraine, and with plenty of meetings between key Asian and European leaders.
May 20 5 tweets 1 min read
A few years ago it was seen as impossible for Germany to decouple economically from Russia.

Now it's seen as impossible for Germany to decouple economically from China.

In the case of Russia, a very costly geopolitical crash was needed to change views and perceptions. Like Merkel with Nord Stream 2, Scholz is now increasing instead of decreasing German dependence on China (Cosco, trip to Beijing with CEOs, not pushing Huawei out of critical German networks) -- at a time when China invests heavily in its military and pursue a hegemonic agenda.
May 20 6 tweets 1 min read
G7 wants "economic security" yet "not decoupling".

That's not going to work. It's just impossible to threaten China with economic disruption in the case of aggression against Taiwan without having a credible option to follow up with deeds.
May 16 6 tweets 1 min read
Die verfehlte deutsche Russlandpolitik "hat den Kreml zur Aggression ermutigt".

"Mit der Unterstützung für die Ostseepipeline Nord Stream 2 erweckte die Bundesregierung in Moskau den Eindruck, dass Deutschland bereit sei, die Ukraine zu verkaufen." Wie falsche Signale aus Deutschland seit den frühen 2000er Jahren Putin ermutigten, zu glauben, dass Deutschland sich seiner Aggression nicht entgegenstellen würde, und damit Fehlverhalten, das in den grossen Angriffskrieg mündete, ermutigte, ist noch nicht aufgearbeitet.
May 14 8 tweets 2 min read
German-Ukrainian declaration: "Russia must immediately, completely and unconditionally withdraw all its military forces from the territory of Ukraine within its internationally recognized borders." president.gov.ua/en/news/spilna… "Germany remains unwavering in its commitment to Ukraine’s independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity."
May 10 9 tweets 2 min read
In his speech to the EU Parliament, chancellor Scholz has laid out the contours of an "open Europe" -- opposed to Macron's "Europe as a bloc". bundeskanzler.de/bk-en/news/add… Scholz is not mentioning Macron, but it's pretty obvious he has the French president's vision of Europe in mind when he makes his points.
May 10 4 tweets 1 min read
For years the west imagined what would be in Russia's self-interest and tried to interact with this supposed self-interest. The result is a disaster. And yet a lot of this is being repeated with China. The whole point of the Xi presidency is that economic interest has moved to the second rang and that his priority is to gain global power -- challenge the US on every level and make China the hegemon in Asia. It's all about geopolitics.
May 10 11 tweets 2 min read
"Americans’ fear of escalation delayed the supply of weapons that could have allowed Ukraine to win last year. One after the other, the weapons systems deemed escalatory have now been delivered, with no negative consequences." @TimothyDSnyder nytimes.com/2023/05/09/opi… @TimothyDSnyder "But the cost of delay can be observed in the Ukrainian territories that Russia still controls: the death pits, the torture chambers and the empty homes of kidnapped children. Tens of thousands of soldiers on both sides have unnecessarily died."
May 9 4 tweets 1 min read
Baerbock sieht die Absage des Lindner-Besuchs als Affront: "Für erfolgreiche Regierungskonsultationen seien vorbereitende direkte Kontakte zwischen den Fachministern wichtig ... «Vom Finanzminister über die Bildungsministerin bis zum Wirtschaftsminister.»" nzz.ch/international/… "Es ist kein Zufall, dass Baerbock den Finanzminister an erster und die Bildungsministerin Bettina Stark-Watzinger an zweiter Stelle erwähnt. Denn diese reiste vor etwa sechs Wochen nach Taiwan. Es war der erste Besuch auf Ministerebene seit 26 Jahren."
May 9 4 tweets 1 min read
"Nach seiner kurzfristigen Ausladung" fordert Lindner neue China-Politik:
- "einen selbstbewussten und realistischen Umgang mit China"
- "ein weniger samtpfötiges Auftreten"
- "Wir lassen uns unsere liberalen Werte nicht für gute Geschäfte abkaufen."

faz.net/aktuell/politi… - "Wir brauchen eine bessere Balance als in der Vergangenheit, als wir zu sehr auf die Wirtschaft geschaut haben."
May 8 8 tweets 1 min read
Wo sind die großen Reden oder zumindest Interviews von Scholz, Lindner, Habeck und Baerbock zur Energiewende, zu China, Russland oder zur EU? Es gibt sie nicht. Die Regierung scheint nicht nur kaum Ideen-getrieben, sondern auch sprachlos, unwillig zur öffentlichen Kommunikation. Das Regieren der Ampel scheint sich aufzulösen in Krisenmanagement einerseits, bürokratische Routine andererseits.
May 8 7 tweets 1 min read
As was obvious from the beginning -- Macron wants to be the peacemaker: In February, "Macron offered in private to Zelensky to host a peace conference in Paris to negotiate a cease-fire when Kyiv decides the time is right". wsj.com/articles/u-s-a… "It couldn’t be determined what any sort of negotiations would look like, but officials in Paris and Berlin said they are interested in a broadly framed cease-fire agreement that would potentially involve China among its guarantors."
May 1 11 tweets 2 min read
A study that deserves to be written: CEO capture -- how German business executives lost sight of their business interests and turned into instruments of Russian and Chinese geo-economic strategies. Business interest = longer-term success in a geopolitically competitive environment