Don't expect big changes in Germany


David Kaspar of DavidsMedienKritik, the invaluable German political and journalistic blog, writes about the post—Schroeder scene, once he loses the forthcoming election. The rhetoric may be milder, but the policies won't change much:

I'm just not sure what a new government will mean for German—American relations. A change in style: definitely. Chancellor Angela Merkel would not publicly criticize or "warn" the U.S. government in the arrogant manner Schroeder or Fischer did against "going alone" or using military means in Iraq or Iran.

But don't expect a change in substance. The next German government will not contribute a soldier or even a penny to military actions aimed at solving problems in Iraq or Iran. A Merkel government will most likely actively try to convince the U.S. government to turn to peaceful, "soft", diplomatic approaches in dealing with the Mullahs in Iran or the terrorist insurgents in Iraq. No chance for German support for the current U.S. administration in the UN Security Council, if German should become a permanent member.