March 02, 2022

Flash Release: Claudia Major and Daniela Schwarzer React to Germany’s Shifts on Defense Policy

By Andrea Kendall-Taylor, Carisa Nietsche, Claudia Major and Daniela Schwarzer

In response to the escalating crisis in Ukraine, Germany recently announced several historic policy shifts over the past few days. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz indicated that Germany would deliver weapons to Ukraine, reversing Germany’s long-held refusal to deliver weapons to a conflict zone. Furthermore, Scholz announced that Germany would plan to spend more than 2% of GDP on defense spending year on year and would create a €100 billion investment fund for the armed forces. Claudia Major and Daniela Schwarzer join Andrea Kendall-Taylor and Carisa Nietsche to assess this monumental shift in German foreign policy.

Dr. Claudia Major is head of the International Security Division at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs in Berlin (SWP). Her research, advisory work and publications focus on security and defense policy in Europe and in a transatlantic context, including NATO, EU, Germany, UK, and France. Previously, Claudia held positions at the Center for Security Studies at ETH Zurich, the German Council on Foreign Relations (Berlin), the EU Institute for Security Studies (Paris), the German Foreign Office (NATO desk) and Sciences Po Paris. Claudia is member in various boards, such as the Advisory Board for Civilian Crisis Prevention at the Federal Foreign Office and the German-British Koenigswinter Conference.

Dr. Daniela Schwarzer is executive director for Europe and Eurasia of the Open Society Foundations. Schwarzer is a renowned expert in European affairs and transatlantic and international relations. She is an honorary professor of political science at Freie Universität Berlin and a senior fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Belfer Center. She has been a special advisor to European leaders such as EU High Representative Josep Borrell and to countries including Poland and France during the preparation of their EU Council presidencies.

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