Saturday, August 20, 2005

Germany Is Not Safe

Germany no longer considers itself a US ally because its politicians and voters are confident that they don't need the US. They're wrong.

There are three looming threats to Germany, none of which it will survive without US help.

Russia

In all the fuss about higher gas prices, you may have missed the boost this has given to the Russian economy.

Russia ready to spend some of its new-found wealth

Seven years to the day after Russia's plunge into financial crisis in 1998, the government will today discuss a draft budget for next year that marks a big shift from the prudence of recent years to a "pre-election" loosening of the state purse strings.

Russia now has the world's fifth-largest reserves of foreign exchange, and has cut foreign debt to 17% of GDP. Nice to hear - the Russians deserve a break. However, this money fuels a Russian military resurgence:

August 19, 2005: Russia has announced that it will increase its test launches of ICBMs to ten a year, at least for this year and 2006...with the economy growing, and oil (a major export) going for over $60 a barrel, there’s more money for maintaining the ICBM force, and running test launches...

And Russia still has world's biggest nuke armory, hat tip DefenseTech:

Russia has the most estimated deployed warheads, 7,360...

The United States came in second at 4,896...

Next is China with an estimated 400 deployed warheads...France with 348, Israel about 200, the United Kingdom with 185, Pakistan with 30 to 50 and India with 30 to 40.

Meanwhile the Germans are virtually defenseless, preferring to spend their money on big entitlements rather than defense. If Germany were a public company, it would be seen as crying out for a takeover - think Vodafone buying Mannesmann. If a resurgent post-Putin Russia were to use nuclear blackmail to demand German territory, what would an isolated Germany do? Complain to the UN?

MidEast Nuclear War

Germany is not-so-quietly protecting the Iranian nuke program, enabling it to field nukes in 3 years, not the 10 the soothing appeasers claim. (After I posted on this, the Israelis made the same point - scroll to second article).

The Mullahs run a corrupt tyranny with high birth rate and a population that wants to be free. So they will follow the standard course of tyrants through the ages and make war to solidify their positions. And, starting 2008, they'll use nukes - if you can hang kids in the Town Square for the crime of being raped, nuking an adversary is small stuff.

My guess is they won't hit Israel, because it can kill all the Mullahs and have plenty to spare. But I could be wrong, in which case we're looking at 200+ very large Israeli nukes plus 10 small Iranian ones. The alternative is Iranian subjugation of its oil-rich neighbors - Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. In this case, perhaps 10 Hiroshima-size nukes would be ground-burst.

Berlin 2,200 miles away faces the fallout from between 10 and 200+ nukes. Either will kill a lot of Germans and severely damage farm productivity - think 100 times worse than Chernobyl.

Economic Collapse

The German economy is struggling, and none of its pols (including Merkel, Schroeder's likely replacement) are proposing the brutal Maggie Thatcher-style reforms that would save them. At some point the decline may become a collapse, with soaring inflation, massive unemployment and falling living standards. We know what the Germans did the last time that happened.

So, take your pick - any mix of these could happen. Or none, despite the lessons of history. If I were German, I'd be looking for a base in the UK and have hoping the Brits would let me in when things got ugly.

Or Germany could re-ally with the US, which could save them from any or all of the above...