Make Peace, Frieden Schaffen!

A call for an immediate peace initiative by the German government has been addressed to Chancellor Olaf Scholz by some two hundred senior members of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD), former and current leading trade unionists, the former head of the Evangelical Church, as well as other influential figures in the country.

The text of the appeal was initiated by historian Peter Brandt, son of the historical leader of German Social Democracy and architect of the policy of “opening to the East” of the then West Germany Chancellor Willy Brandt. It was published on Sunday in the Berlin newspaper “Berliner Zeitung” and Frankfurt newspaper “Frankfurter Rundschau”.

The signatories include the former President of the federal Parliament Wolfgang Tirze, the former Prime Minister of the state of Hesse and federal Finance Minister Hans Eichel, former federal Justice Minister Hertha Doimler-Gmelin, the former German commissioner of the European Union Günther Verheugen, the former President of the SPD and MP Norbert-Walter Borjans, the former Presidents of the German Federation of trade unions DGB Michael Zomer and Reiner Hoffmann, the former head of the Evangelical Church, Margot Kessmann. The total number of signatures amounts to about two hundred and includes in addition to the former a number of active party, trade union and political personalities.

“The war has been going on for a year. Every day means to the people who live it more pain and destruction, wounded and dead. Every day the danger of an extension of hostilities increases. The shadow of atomic war covers Europe. But the world is not allowed to slip into a new Great War, it needs peace.”

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The authors estimate that from this bloody war of positions there are only losers. “A large part of our citizens do not want the whirlwind of violence to continue without end. Instead of militarism we need the language of diplomacy and peace”, write the signatories who remind to their compatriots: «We owe German unity and the end of divisions in Europe to the policy of peace and diplomacy and this policy is not obsolete”, before quoting Chancellor Willy Brandt’s words: “We must resist the current if it tries to spoil the bank.”

It was Willy Brandt’s Genuflection, on December 7, 1970, which paved the way for the Polish-German reconciliation, remind the authors, before recalling the Helsinki Treaty on a common European security system, stressing that peace can only be achieved on the basis of international law and only with the participation of Russia. “Our world needs reciprocity, that is the only way we can meet the challenges of our time. It is crucial to stop the escalation of the war. We encourage the Federal Chancellor along with France to include Brazil, China, India and Indonesia in a mediation for a quick truce. This would be a necessary step to stop the killing and explore possibilities for peace. Only in this way can the way be opened for a common security order in Europe.”


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