web analytics
October 30, 2014 / 6 Heshvan, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



Iran: What Will Germany Do Now?

Nuclear

The bilateral relationship continued uninterrupted after 1945. By 1952 West Germany was the leading trade partner of Mohammed Reza Shah’s Iran, a position maintained almost every year until 1979.

Despite the fact that West Germany’s position as the Shah’s leading supplier had discredited it in the eyes of his opponents, German technology and industry remained much sought-after under Khomeini’s regime.

“Goods from Germany traditionally enjoy great popularity in Iran and are preferred to products from other countries”, declared Dr Ranjbaran, a member of the Board of Directors of the German-Iranian Chamber of Trade and Commerce in November 2010. “This relationship of trust has been built up over decades of long and close cooperation between German and Iranian participants.”

As a result, today two thirds of Iranian industrial firms and three quarters of the country’s small and medium enterprises use machinery and equipment of German origin. “The Iranians are totally dependent on German spare parts and suppliers”, states Michael Tockuss, the former President of the German-Iranian Chamber of Industry and Commerce in Teheran. Germany can choose whether to continue to meet this demand or cease to do so until further notice.

At loggerheads over the Iranian nuclear program

In 1984 Hans-Dietrich Genscher became the first Western foreign minister to visit the Mullahs. In the 1990s, relations were further stepped up. According to Hossein Mousavian, a former Iranian ambassador to Germany, bilateral contacts had developed to the point where “between October 1990 and 1996 over 300 delegations… made reciprocal visits – delegations from the spheres of politics, the economy, culture and parliament.”

At that time US President Bill Clinton and German Chancellor Helmut Kohl were already at loggerheads over the Iranian nuclear program. Germany wanted to thwart American efforts to use economic pressure to get Iran to abandon further pursuit of its nuclear plans. Teheran was “aware of Germany’s significant role in breaking the economic chains with which the USA had bound Iran”, writes Mousavian.

The penultimate episode in this controversy started with Obama’s election victory. Obama aimed for a rapprochement between Washington and Teheran and this approach made it easier for Germany, to “hold fast to its basic position of non-exclusion of Iran”, according to a study by the Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik think-tank in May 2009. Now, it argued, fresh heart must be taken and cooperation with Iran “established and positively evaluated” wherever possible.

As we know, however, Khamenei brusquely rejected Obama’s outstretched hand. “Iran has chosen the path of international isolation”, lamented the American President a few days ago.

The German government, on the other hand, has stuck to its position of “non-exclusion”, as we can see from a glance at the activities of the aforementioned German-Iranian Chamber of Trade and Commerce, which is co-funded by the German Ministry of Economics.

The German-Iranian Chamber of Trade and Commerce

The purpose of this body is “to establish new trade links between the two countries or expand existing cooperation” and “actively to contribute to the preservation and improvement of relations between Iran and Germany.” It boasts being the second largest of Germany’s international network of foreign trade chambers.

In 2010, with the active support of the visa section of the German Embassy, it shepherded 7,000 representatives of Iranian firms to Germany, so that they could “learn about the latest technologies, innovations and achievements” at German trade fairs and keep business appointments. At the same time German businessmen who wanted to “meet the largest possible number of potential business partners” in Iran were looked after by the Chamber’s in-house Events Department.

In addition, every year the Chamber publishes a catalogue in which German firms offer their services in English and Persian. The 2010 catalogue lists not only major German firms such as Babcock Borsig, Bosch, Carl Zeiss, Deutz, Degussa, Herrenknecht, Kraussmaffei, Linde, Merck and Miele, but also smaller enterprises such as Aker Wirth GmbH from Erkelenz, which advertises its tunnel-boring equipment “with special emphasis on its application to hard rock” and Firma Atlas Terex from Delmenhorst, which, under the slogan “the right equipment for every job”, offers cranes, i.e. machines which the regimes uses for, among other things, public hangings.

According to statistics provided by the Federal Agency for External Trade in September 2007, German firms were the market leaders in seven out of nine mechanical engineering sectors in Iran. Italian firms head the list for the other two sectors.

Admittedly, German exports to Iran fell by an annual rate of 19% in the first eight months of this year, but they remain at a high level: according to official figures for January to September 2011 Germany exported high-tech goods to a value of €2.285bn to Iran – 30% of total EU exports to Iran. These figures show that Western efforts to resolve the Iranian conflict by non-military means are doomed to failure if Germany undermines them.

About the Author: Küntzel is an external research associate at the Vidal Sassoon International Centre for the Study of Antisemitism (SICSA) at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and a member of the Board of Directors of the German chapter of Scholars for Peace in the Middle East (SPME). Matthias holds a tenured part-time position as a teacher of political science at a technical college in Hamburg, Germany.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Iran: What Will Germany Do Now?”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Abbas and the Temple Mount: "It's mine, all mine. No Jews allowed.
Abbas Declares Closure of Al Aqsa Mosque a ‘Declaration of War’
Latest Indepth Stories
Which glass has the poison?

The White House wanted to defame Netanyahu, undermine his reputation, impugn him & his policies

Adolf Hitler and the representative of the Palestinian Arabs, the Mufti of Jerusalem, Amin al-Husseini, December, 1941.

Palestinian anti-Semitism in 2014 is more extreme and mainstream than German A/S in the 1930s.

Sheldon Silver

Woven deeply through it all is the Jewish obligation to fight injustice.

Cravatts-Richard--new

Only in the inverted world of academia would Jewish professors denounce the AMCHA Initiative report.

Many poskim were and are adamant about the responsibility of every individual to vote.

Individuals who may have been abused are the “clients” in need and receiving care and protection.

An accomplished Torah scholar and ardent adherent of Bobov chassidus, he was renowned for his self-effacing dedication and skills as an international lawyer and law professor

The fact that the United States government after World War II sought to take advantage of the expertise of German scientists, even those known to have contributed to the Nazi war effort, is well known and largely accepted as having been necessary for America’s national defense. (Wernher von Braun is perhaps the most famous and […]

The New York State comptroller manages the state’s $180.7 billion pension fund, audits the spending practices of all state agencies and local governments, oversees the New York State and Local Retirement System, reviews the New York State and City budgets, and approves billions in State contracts and spending.

Rabinovich is the author of several popular books on Israel’s wars, including The Battle for Jerusalem, The Yom Kippur War, and The Boats of Cherbourg.

To say he was beloved because of the way he loved his students does not sufficiently capture the reality.

The birth I speak about is to give birth to ourselves, to our full potential.

The extreme hypocrisy, contempt & vulgarity of the attacks indicate more than a policy disagreement

More Articles from Matthias Küntzel
Hitler and Haj Amin al-Husseini

But how exactly could Nazi Germany of all countries conduct a religious propaganda campaign? The German ambassador at Tehran, Erwin Ettel had an idea. “The way to directly connect up with Shiite ideas is through the treatment of the Jewish question, which the Muslim perceives in religious terms and which, precisely for this reason, makes […]

Nuclear

Is the German government going to consider 0.5% of Germany’s exports more important than solidarity with the West and the special relationship with Israel?

A threat of this magnitude calls not for prevarication, but swift and strong action: every day that passes without massive Western pressure increases the likelihood of a military strike against Iran.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/analysis/iran-what-will-germany-do-now/2012/01/01/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: