Germans react to energy shortages and Ukraine aid — Analysis

Berlin promises to send Kiev weapons. Germans settle for energy austerity, fearing that it may prolong the conflict.

While the Bundestag approved sending heavy weapons to Ukraine in a vote, the majority of Germans worry that Kiev’s continued supply may lead to the conflict spreading to other parts of the world. According to Telegram interviews, Germans also have creative solutions to the rise in energy prices resulting from EU sanctions against Russia.

The German parliament approved supplying Ukraine with heavy weaponry on Thursday by a vote of 586 to 100. However, Chancellor Olaf Scholz warned last week that Bundeswehr stocks are almost empty. According to a recent survey, 56% of Germans fear that the conflict could spread to other nations. However, only 26% feel there are military solutions to the Ukraine crises.

A Telegram channel called ‘Kanzlerdaddy’ interviewed some Germans on the street to see if the Bundestag’s decision reflected the will of the people.

“I think it’s terrible. It’s a crime. German weapons have no place there,”One elderly woman shook her head.

“It’s not good because we’re being dragged into a war that shouldn’t concern us. It might not be the most popular opinion, but I don’t want a war to come here,”“An older gentleman said.

Russia reminds Germany of how WW2 ended

“I think it only prolongs the war: more suffering, more deaths, more trouble,”Another silver-haired woman said the same thing. “Germany should stay away from this.”

However, younger Germans were more supportive of weapons shipments. 

“I think I would support this,” A middle-aged woman agreed. “I think what [Russian President Vladimir] Putin does is unacceptable.”

“In some sense we should send weapons there because it’s possible we’ll be able to stop it fast – stop Putin fast and end this war fast,”Another woman said the same thing. “I don’t know, but maybe it’ll make things worse?”

“It’s too late,”A young man with a mask on his face lamentated. “Everything is happening too slow. I think it’s a disgrace. It was a great help to us, and we were able to rebuild the country following World War II. And in this sense it’s sad and shocking that everything’s happening this way.”

Western arms destroyed in Ukraine – Russia

In another “people on the street” video, ‘Kanzlerdaddy’ asked Berlin residents how they are coping with the current energy situation. Although temperatures in the German capital can still drop below 5 degrees Celsius at nights, heating is available for many.

“I’m always looking to save money on utilities,” “A middle-aged male said that.” “I’m trying to use less electricity and gas at home, and not heat my apartment too much … I drive less now. It’s also helpful to use cruise-control. I drive slower and maintain the same speed.”

“I’m great at conserving energy at home,”A woman said it. “I close the refrigerator door quickly, turn off the lights, and don’t heat my apartment too much.”

“I always try to save on heating. I prefer to put on a sweater at home instead of switching on my radiator,”Another woman spoke. “I always switch off the lights when I leave the room. Actually, it has not changed much for me. I’m not saving more than I used to now.”

Kremlin responds to EU ‘gas blackmail’ claims

A younger woman stated that while the heating season may be over, hot water still needs electricity or gas.

“Maybe take five minutes to shower or do dishes,” She said. “One must use public transport. And no electric dryers, you need to hang clothes up.”

Germany depends on Russian natural gas imports for its majority of energy requirements. After EU sanctions ban euro-dollar transactions with Moscow, Germany has reluctantly accepted to pay in rubles.

Ursula von der Leyen (former German defense minister, current President of EU Commission) protested against this week’s decision “blackmail” Gazprom’s decision to halt exports to Poland and Bulgaria after they refused to pay in rubles, but Moscow replied that it was the EU’s own fault for taking “unprecedented hostile steps”These include “robbing” Russia’s foreign currency reserves.



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