0531 GMT April 26, 2018
Germany’s refusal to take part in last week’s US-led airstrikes on Syria can be interpreted from different angles, the most important of which pertains to Berlin’s efforts to take much more independent policies from those of the US.
The US and Germany have failed to develop strong ties since Donald Trump took the helm at the White House. They have been at odds over a number of issues including trade disputes and the Paris climate agreement. It seems that it is hard for Berlin to accept irrational policies adopted by the Trump administration. This is because Germany, which is seeking permanent membership in the UN Security Council (UNSC), wants to introduce itself as a country which deserves the position.
Likewise, Trump’s “Twitter foreign policy” which generates tensions in the world, runs counter to Germany’s approaches which are based on responsibility. That’s why German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas has said that securing a seat at the Security Council would be a priority for Berlin.
In fact, Germany is concerned about global crises which are provoked by the stances of the Trump administration. Hence, it has tried to adopt more distinct policies from its European partners vis-à-vis the US over these crises.
Presently, the US and Germany have divergent views towards the Iran nuclear deal.
Trump is exploring avenues to kill the nuclear agreement which has been endorsed by the UN Security Council. But Germany wants to preserve the accord.
The US president, who has frequently railed against the nuclear agreement and labeled it the "worst deal ever negotiated,” has threatened that he will withdraw from it if Germany, France and Britain do not make "significant changes” to it.
Hence, negotiations between the three European nations can determine the fate of the deal ahead the May 12 deadline set by Trump.
Now, all eyes are on a meeting between German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Donald Trump which will take place later this month. The results of the meeting can affect Trump’s stance on the Iran nuclear deal among other divergent views between Washington and Berlin.
Hossein Ziaee is a journalist based in Germany.