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> You do not have a monopoly on understanding. And it is rather arrogant of you to assume your understanding is superior.

I do not claim to have a monopoly of understanding. I tried to establish why I consider myself well informed about what is happening in political discussions in Germany. You claimed as a fact that "Germany is exiting NATO". No where did you provide any reference to where your statement is based on. And my answer to that was: there is no indication that the German politics has any intentions of doing so. Being German is relevant here as:

- I am carefully following day to day political discussions. If there were such considerations, it is extremely likely I would have heard about them.

- Living in Germany, I have full access to all media here. I don't know how much of the media coverage is available outside of Germany.

- Being a native German and a resident (living in Munich at the moment) means, I have a very good understanding of the German language. I do not have to rely on translations and can understand original statements with at least no language barrier in place. It would be helpful for this discussion, if you could state your location and whether you are a German speaker.

> Your own lack of interpretation of what she said is highly disingenuous especially when taken in context with the plans to concentrate on an EU armed forces, the plan to withdraw Bundeswehr from all foreign NATO missions by 2024.

Not sure what I should "interpret" but, please provide any reference for these claims of yours. Yes, there are some considerations for creating an EU armed forces, but they are not even at planning state. There are no plans or withdrawing from the NATO foreign missions. If you think there are, please provide a reference.

> Europa muss sein Schicksal selbst in die Hand nehmen.

Yes. Merkel said that. The video of the speech can be found here: http://www.zeit.de/video/2017-05/5451383425001/angela-merkel...

She is saying: Wir Europäer müssen unser Schicksal wirklich in die eigene Hand nehmen. Natürlich in Freundschaft mit den Vereinigten Staaten von Amerika, in Freundschaft mit Großbritannien, in guter Nachbarschaft, wo immer das geht, auch mit Russland, auch mit anderen Ländern, aber wir müssen wissen, wir müssen selbst für unsere Zukunft kämpfen, als Europäer, für unser Schicksal und das will ich gerne mit ihnen gemeinsam tun.

So this is just a call for a stronger Europe, which does not just depend on the US for guidance and defense. Which is incidentally the thing the US has asked from Europe for years, including raising the defense budgets. There is no hint at leaving the NATO. Looking at the defense situation of Germany that would be just bizarre. The state of the German military is not compatible with these thoughts. Since the reunification, the size of the German military has been greatly reduced, partly because of the requirements of the 2+4 contract, partly of the changed situation in the world. What is left of the armed forces, is mostly on NATO duties. So there is no doubt of our commitment to the NATO. But for sure, there are discussions about increasing our defense efforts (as asked by the NATO), but equally, but equally, whether all of our military should be tied up in NATO missions.

> FWIW and as you must already know being German https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Der_Spiegel is called 'The Mirror' not 'Mirror'! as that makes no sense in German nor English.

Yes, I am aware. I was just referring to your spelling of the word "Spiegel". By the way, the magazine itself uses its name with and without the article: http://www.spiegel.de




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