Its close energy trade ties with Russia have made the country reluctant to agree to a full embargo on oil and gas imports, despite pressure from other EU countries. On Wednesday May 19, Berlin announced its intention to find alternative energy sources and to sever ties with Putin, as part of the sanctions aimed at condemning the invasion of Ukraine.
As announced, the plans include funding and incentives to promote more energy-efficient standards in heating and construction.
Additionally, the country intends to get rid of subsidies for gas heating and construction projects that do not meet the new Efficiency House 40 standard.
This objective will be achieved by renovating the least energy efficient buildings, as well as by deploying solar roofs to rapidly increase the production of renewable energy.
In an article in The Times today, journalist Oliver Moddy criticized the country for displaying a pretentious concern for common interests, disguising its own energy interests.
He linked the tactic to the “repressed” patriotic feelings of German citizens, which go back to the shame of Nazi Germany’s crimes.
In fact, Mr Mody says Germany “will never be a completely normal country” because of its Nazi past, but he says the country should still “act like one”.
Among other things, the journalist suggests that the country is reluctant to provide military equipment to support Ukraine, because it “fears that this will make them vulnerable to a direct Russian attack”.
Titled “Repressed Germans Angry with Ukraine,” the article claims that German Chancellor Olaf Scholz does not honestly admit his country’s interests.
According to Mr Mody, this exposes Berlin to “charges of hypocrisy”.
The reporter said, “There are two underlying issues that can to some extent be resolved.
“The first is that Germany is not good at frankly articulating its national interests, which often merge with high moral principles or arguments about Europe as a whole.”
He says the country is facing backlash from its allies over a “cynical and sanctimonious” refusal to cut ties with Russia.
Although, he says, objections to the embargo on Russian oil imports “disappeared” as soon as Berlin found other ways to meet its energy needs.
The journalist argues that Berlin’s national interests in diplomacy are often disguised as a spurious concern for the well-being of others.
The second problem, according to Moody, is Germany’s repressed patriotism.
He says, “You can hardly define your national interests if you struggle to admit that they are legitimate.”
And he goes on to suggest that Mr Scholz ‘feels he cannot be seen explicitly defending Germany’s corner without being decried as a mean-spirited nationalist’.