The open letter demands that Scholz stop arms shipments to Ukraine

In the face of growing pressure on Chancellor Olaf Scholz to meet the demand for heavy weapons shipments to Ukraine, a group of personalities from science, politics, culture and other areas of civil society have written an open letter to the Chancellor.

In it, they called for a halt to arms supplies to Ukrainian troops and to encourage the government in Kiev to end military resistance against promises of negotiations for a ceasefire and a political solution.

The signatories criticize that by sending weapons Germany and other NATO countries have made themselves de facto partners in war and warn against a nuclear escalation.

The surrender of arms and military support from NATO would prolong the war and make it a diplomatic solution far away. Despite the success, the price of prolonged military resistance would be more cities and villages destroyed and more casualties among the Ukrainian population.

At their initiative, the signatories also want to send a signal to members of the Bundestag, who are expected to discuss further arms shipments to Ukraine next week. Here is the full text of the open letter.


Honorable Chancellor Scholz,

we are people with different backgrounds, attitudes and political attitudes towards the policy of NATO, Russia and the federal government. We all deeply condemn this unjustifiable Russian war in Ukraine. We are united in warning against an uncontrollable escalation of the war with unpredictable consequences for the whole world and in opposing an extension of the war and bloodshed with arms shipments.

By supplying arms, Germany and other NATO countries have made themselves a de facto partner in the war. And so Ukraine has also become the battleground for the conflict between NATO and Russia over the security order in Europe, which has been escalating for years.

This brutal war in the heart of Europe is taking place at the expense of the Ukrainian people. At the same time, the economic war that has now begun is threatening the supply of people in Russia and many poor countries around the world.

War crimes reports are being collected. Although difficult to verify in prevailing conditions, it must be assumed that in this war, as in the others before it, atrocities will take place and that brutality will increase with its duration. One more reason to end it soon.

The war carries the real danger of escalation and military escalation that can no longer be controlled – similar to that of World War I. Red lines are drawn, which are then crossed by actors and gamblers on both sides, and the spiral goes one step further. If responsible people like you, the esteemed Federal Chancellor, do not stop this development, the end will be another great war. Only this time with nuclear weapons, widespread destruction and the end of human civilization. Therefore, avoiding more and more casualties, destruction and a further dangerous escalation must have absolute priority.

Despite reports of success from the Ukrainian military meanwhile: it is far inferior to the Russian one and has little chance of winning this war. The price of prolonged military resistance, despite the possible success, will be more cities and villages destroyed and more casualties in the Ukrainian population. The surrender of arms and military support from NATO prolongs the war and makes it a diplomatic solution far away.

It is right to make the request “Down with the wings!” mainly the Russian side. But at the same time, further steps must be taken to end the bloodshed and displacement of people as soon as possible.

As bitter as it may be to withdraw from the violence that violates international law, it is the only realistic and humane alternative to a long and grueling war. The first and most important step would be to stop all arms shipments to Ukraine, combined with an immediate ceasefire to be negotiated.

We therefore call on the German government, the EU and NATO countries to stop supplying weapons to Ukrainian troops and to encourage the government in Kiev to end military resistance against the promise of negotiations for a ceasefire and a political solution. . The bids for Moscow, already discussed by President Zelenskyi – possible neutrality, the agreement on the recognition of Crimea and referendums on the future status of the Donbas republics – offer a real chance to do so.

Negotiations for the rapid withdrawal of Russian troops and the restoration of Ukraine’s territorial integrity must be backed by proposals by NATO countries themselves regarding the legitimate security interests of Russia and its neighbors.

To stop further mass destruction of cities as soon as possible and to speed up ceasefire negotiations, the federal government should suggest that cities currently under siege, most at risk and so far largely indestructible, such as Kiev, Kharkiv and Odessa, to become “Unprotected Cities”. First Additional Protocol to the Geneva Convention of 1949. Thanks to the concept already defined in the Hague Convention on Land War, many cities were able to prevent their destruction during World War II..

The prevailing logic of war must be replaced by a bold logic of peace and a new European and global architecture of peace must be created, including Russia and China. Our country should not stand aside here, but should play an active role.

Sincerely,

PD dr Johannes M Beckerpolitical scientist, former director of the Center for
Conflict research in Marburg

Daniela DahnJournalist, Writer and Publicist, Pen Member

dr Rolf Goessner, Lawyer and publicist, International League for Human Rights

Juergen Grasslin, Federal Spokesman DFG-VK and Aktion Aufschrei – Stop the arms trade!

Joachim Guilliard, publicist

Dr. Luc Jochimsenjournalist, TV editor, deputy 2005-2013

Christoph Kramer, Surgeon, International Physicians for Nuclear War Prevention IPPNW (German Section)

Prof. Dr. Karin Kulowpolitical scientist

Dr. Helmut Lohrer, doctor, International Adviser, IPPNW (German section)

Prof. Dr. Mohsen Massarratpolitical scientist and economist

dr Hans MisselwitzSPD Basic Values ​​Commission

Ruth Misselwitz, Protestant theologian, former chair of the Action Conciliation
peace services

Prof. Dr. Norman Paechexpert in international law, former member of the German Bundestag

Prof. Dr. Werner Rufpolitical scientist and sociologist

Prof. Dr. Gert Sommer, Psychologist, former board member of the Center for
Conflict research in Marburg

Hans Christoph Graf von Sponeckformer Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations

dr Antje Vollmerformer Vice-President of the German Bundestag

Konstantin Weckermusician, composer and author

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