Share this story
Close X
Switch to Desktop Site

Thoughts on German Reunification

The opinion-page column ``Two (Safe) Germanys,'' Nov. 16, states that one Germany ``with its size and strengths would pose a threat to its neighbors in both the East and the West.'' The German people do not wish to misuse power. Germans suffer immensely from the repercussions of war, and we are committed to peace. Demanding reunification, politicians refer to the Basic Law of the Federal Republic of Germany, drafted in 1949 by West Germany's Founding Fathers. It claims the right to build one nation with liberty and freedom. Helmut Kohl, the West German chancellor, is legitimately striving to fulfill this statement, seeking the right of the German people to be unified.

As Europe comes together in preparation for 1992, suspicions of a German-dominated Europe are unjustified. Mr. Kohl has even assured Poland that its western boundaries will not be changed by military action. An installed ``solid status quo'' in Europe would only contradict further development and ongoing alterations.

About these ads

If Germany's allies do not help to fulfill the long sought reunification, who will? The world must grasp the present opportunities to unite on bringing East and West closer together. Making restrictions before starting this work is counterproductive. Friedemann G. Moser, Rommelshalde, West Germany

This column suggests that since Kohl cannot act as an unbiased statesman, Presidents Bush and Gorbachev should strike a deal: reduction of weaponry stationed on German soil; associate membership in the Common Market for East Germany and other reforming East-bloc nations. Will other West European powers stand by, however, and allow a modern-day Congress of Vienna - wherein the United States and the Soviet Union establish a balance of power for Europe? The writer dangles the threat that if Mr. Bush and Mr. Gorbachev do not act, perhaps Kohl and Gorbachev will agree to exchange German neutrality for reunification. Such a scenario suggests that the US, France, and Great Britain would be helpless against German and Russian domination.

The only safe Europe is a Europe free of military blocs. The only Germany free of political and national resentment is a reunited Germany. Elliott A. Cohen, New York

Follow Stories Like This
Get the Monitor stories you care about delivered to your inbox.