Paul Lachine

Genf am Rhein?

PARIS – Vor zwanzig Jahren, direkt nach der deutschen Wiedervereinigung, waren die französischen Zeitschriften voll mit Karikaturen von Kanzler Helmut Kohl, der die traditionelle preußische Pickelhaube trug. Das neue Deutschland wurde als Bedrohung für das europäische Gleichgewicht wahrgenommen. Deutschland war einfach wieder “zu viel”.

Man dachte, mit der steigenden Bevölkerungsgröße und Wirtschaftsdynamik Deutschlands würden zwangsläufig auch die geopolitischen Ambitionen des Landes zunehmen. Es sei nur eine Frage der Zeit, bis Europa wieder von der “deutschen Frage” heimgesucht würde, wie zuletzt zwischen 1871 und 1945.

Auch Helmut Kohl hat dieses Bild teilweise genährt und dazu verwendet, seine europäischen Amtskollegen davon zu überzeugen, Deutschland schnell in ein stärker integriertes Europa einzubinden. In der Tat führte dieser Gedankengang letztlich zur Einführung des Euro. Um seiner europäischen Berufung nachzukommen, erklärte sich Deutschland bereit, seine hochgelobte Deutsche Mark aufzugeben – die Währung, die die spektakuläre wirtschaftliche Wiedergeburt und die soziale Stabilität des Landes in der Nachkriegszeit begleitet und symbolisiert hatte.

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