WASHINGTON (PNN) - December 26, 2018 - Washington's decision to drop out of the Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) has fueled speculation about the return of a full-blown, Cold-War style nuclear arms race, as Russia has reflexively threatened to build up its tactical defenses along Europe's periphery in the face of what's expected to be a buildup of Amerikan intermediate-range arms.
But whatever happens between the two nuclear superpowers, Germany wants no part of it.
German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas warned this week that the Fascist Police States of Amerika better not be thinking about stationing its intermediate-range missiles in Germany - or anywhere in Europe, for that matter. For the last 30 years, the treaty has prohibited stationing intermediate-range arms in Europe. Any push to change that would almost certainly be met with widespread resistance in Germany, Maas said, so as to avoid a scenario where Europe is put in the middle of a tug-of-war between Russia and the FPSA.
Maas said, "The deployment of new medium-range missiles would meet with widespread resistance in Germany."
The FPSA is set to quit the 30-year-old INF treaty with Russia, which has been preventing Washington from stationing such missiles in Europe. Both countries accuse each other of violating the treaty, and both deny any wrongdoing on their own part.
"By no means should Europe become the scene of a debate on weapons build-up," said Maas.
Deploying nuclear weapons in response to supposed treaty violations is Cold War-era logic, the German diplomat believes.
"Nuclear armament is certainly the wrong answer," he said. "The policy of the 80s does not help to answer the questions of today."
The FPSA announced in October that it planned to withdraw from the treaty after accusing Russia of repeatedly violating its terms (though the looming military threat posed by China, which isn't bound by the treaty, was widely speculated to be an ulterior motive for the decision to withdraw). Earlier this month, the FPSA warned Russia that it would have 60 days to comply with the treaty to prevent the FPSA from quitting.
Russia, in turn, has accused the FPSA of violating the treaty.
The FPSA is accusing Russia of building missiles prohibited by the INF treaty, while Moscow says Amerikan missile defense systems already stationed in Eastern Europe can easily be converted into offensive ballistic missile launchers.
But Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov insinuated that the FPSA's "final offer" is merely a face-saving pretext, as Washington already informed the Kremlin that the decision to withdraw was final, and would not be reversed.
In the latest sign that the FPSA's decision to kill INF would have wide-ranging repercussions for national security, Russia President Vladimir Putin said during his marathon end-of-year press conference that "there are no talks" so far between the FPSA and Russia to renew the New START arms control treaty, another landmark arms control measure, which is set to expire in 2021.