Another Near-Miss in US-German Relations

Europe is being rude to the US again, it seems – but thankfully this time only a few of our English friends noticed.

Strangely enough, my regular forays through the American and European press had led me to believe that Chancellor Schröder’s government in Germany, above all, was eager to to mend relations with the US after the rather serious difference-of-opinion about Iraq. Nonetheless, we apparently have one Jürgen Chrobog, State Secretary of the German Auswärtiges Amt (Foreign Office), instructing a regularly-scheduled meeting of all German ambassadors that the US is becoming a “police state,” as it is “restricting more and more its civic liberties at home.”

This thanks to the Times of London (so that somewhat-awkward last quote, which they must have taken from the original German, belongs to them and not to me.) I had to go with the Times, since I didn’t succeed in finding any report on the incident in any of the on-line German press – not even in the on-line Focus newsmagazine, which the Times credits with originally reporting it. (Yes, friends, here EuroSavant temporarily departs from its self-given mission to monitor the European non-English-language press – but I’ve made it clear that occasionally I would use UK and Ireland sources, too.)

Note I’m not yet ready to take issue with the factual basis of Mr. Chrobog’s claim. I worry myself about what’s happening with civil liberties back in the US (where, as a reminder, I don’t currently live – I live in Amsterdam), what with the October, 2001 “Patriot” Act, the Patriot Act II which the Bush administration is reportedly seeking to bring before Congress, and US citizens being arrested and held without charge for weeks at a time, such has happened recently in Portland, Oregon. It’s just that I find it rather silly for him to vent in this way, and to allow it to leak out to the press, when his country is trying to kiss and make-up with the US. Lucky for him the international press hasn’t really picked up this story widely.

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on
Shout it
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter
Google Buzz (aka. Google Reader)

Comments are closed.