The Union wants to know: In the Bundestag, the largest opposition faction will submit its own motion for the delivery of heavy weapons to Ukraine this week. She demands that the country attacked by Russia be quickly supplied with armored personnel carriers, armored engineers and armored recovery vehicles. At the same time, she complains that after the motion for a resolution with the traffic light coalition on equipment aid for Ukraine almost two months ago, far too little or nothing happened in the Bundestag. CDU and CSU suspect Chancellor Olaf Scholz of delaying deliveries out of consideration for his own party, which is critical of the military.
Some in the traffic light coalition grumble that the CDU and CSU want to play government here and compile lists of weapons without knowing the background and facts. The accusation, especially from the chancellor party SPD, comes that the Union is fooling people with the false thesis that no “heavy weapons” have been delivered at all. Reference is made to the poor level of equipment in the Bundeswehr, for which the Union’s defense ministers were responsible for 16 years.
The Social Democrats themselves are making a decisive contribution to ensuring that others set the agenda in the debate on arms deliveries to Ukraine. Not even his closest associates are under any illusions about the Chancellor’s deficits in explaining politics – but the deficits are difficult to remedy. What is even more important is that Scholz, in addition to all other tasks, has to lead the weapons debate for the SPD almost alone.
Because while the pushers Norbert Röttgen, Roderich Kiesewetter (both CDU), Marie-Agnes Strack-Zimmermann (FDP) or Anton Hofreiter (Greens) dominate almost every talk show, defenders of the cautious Chancellor course from the SPD parliamentary group are missing in these forums fully. It is probably not only due to the disinterest of the respective editorial offices that they do not invite the responsible SPD deputy parliamentary group leader Gabriela Heinrich or parliamentary secretary Katja Mast. You have to shine there and be able to score rhetorically. Group leader Rolf Mützenich himself avoids talk shows.
There are reasons for the Chancellor’s decisions. One is the desire for secrecy so as not to jeopardize deliveries. Scholz also says: Volodymyr Zelenskyj did not ask me for more. But his adviser and ambassador do it all the time. In short: the Union has every right to have the issue resolved in the Bundestag. And in the end, the SPD could also benefit from this.