It’s Not Just US-Amerikaner Who Break The Rules

When it comes to holding free and fair elections, for example.

Rules

Germany rocks in the Dishonesty Department too. In other areasy maybe. But still.

Germany is now the biggest breaker of EU rules, according to new statistics on enforcement actions started by Brussels against member states.

The figures come despite the country’s leading role in the European project and claims from some quarters that Angela Merkel’s government dominates proceedings in the bloc.

Numbers provided to German newspaper Handelsblatt by the country’s economics ministry show the country’s government is subject to 74 infringement proceedings by the European Commission for failing to implement EU regulations properly in German law.

German Green party politician Markus Tressel told the newspaper Germany was now “bottom of the class” for following EU rules and far from the “model pupil” it was sometimes portrayed as.

Where On Earth Did I Put That €1.9 Billion?

I didn’t leave it in my other wallet now, did I?

Wirecard

Remember when Germany used to have that squeaky-clean image? Yeah. Me neither. Now Wirecard has stepped up to the plate.

German payments firm Wirecard says missing €1.9bn may not exist – Company thought money was in two Asian banks but search hits dead end in Philippines.

“The management board of Wirecard assesses on the basis of further examination that there is a prevailing likelihood that the bank trust account balances in the amount of €1.9bn do not exist.”

Our Next Promise Will Show More Promise

Not.

Defense

The longer Germany’s grand coalition stays in power, the more doubtful it is that Berlin will raise defence expenditure to the levels that it has promised its US and European allies. A failure to meet Germany’s commitments will corrode the mutual trust that is the essential ingredient of a successful international military alliance.

Inadequate German defence spending weakens Nato, the foundation stone of the nation’s security for 70 years. It damages US-German relations, which are at a post-1945 low because of the Trump administration’s disruption of the liberal world order. Ultimately, it undermines the credibility of the government’s claim that Germany stands for a robust, autonomous European security and defence strategy less reliant on Washington.

The Christian Democrat-Social Democrat coalition that assumed office in 2017 informed Nato at the start of this year that it would spend 1.5 per cent of gross domestic product on defence in 2024. This figure was below the 2 per cent to which Angela Merkel, Germany’s chancellor, and other national leaders had committed themselves at a Nato summit in 2014.