March 08, 2024

Franco-German Tensions and the War in Ukraine

Last week, French President Emmanuel Macon made waves when he said that he had not ruled out sending ground troops to fight in Ukraine. This statement prompted a strong reaction from Russian President Vladimir Putin, and for many of France’s NATO allies to distance themselves from Macron’s statement and potential escalation. One of the most notable instances of this came from German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, who asserted that soldiers from NATO countries should not “actively participate in war events.” This latest Franco-German spat fits within a larger trend of disagreements between Paris and Berlin and comes at a time when unified European leadership is desperately needed to aid Kyiv. To discuss the implications of these recent events for the future of Western support to Ukraine, Camille Grand and Claudia Major join Andrea Kendall- Taylor and Jim Townsend on Brussels Sprouts.

Camille Grand is a Distinguished Policy Fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations. He leads the organization’s work on defense and disruptive technologies in European security.

Claudia Major is head of the International Security Division at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs in Berlin. Her research focuses on European and transatlantic security and defense policy.

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