Ex-German Chancellor Leaves Board of Russian Oil Company

Photo: Associated Press [via The Wall Street Journal]

The Facts

  • On Fri., Russian state-owned energy company Rosneft announced that former German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder is stepping down from its board of directors. It had become "impossible" for him to further extend his mandate, Schröder reportedly told the company.

  • A day earlier, the European Parliament adopted a non-binding resolution calling on the EU to extend sanctions to high-profile Europeans who refused to give up their posts on the boards of major Russian companies.


The Spin

Pro-establishment narrative

Schröder has rightly become a pariah in his own country. As an energy lobbyist and against Germany's interests, he did his utmost to deepen the nation's dependence on Russia. Meanwhile, he leveraged his influence as a former German chancellor and close friend of Putin to line his own pockets. Schröder, however, is only a symptom of Germany's naive and failed policy toward Russia in recent decades.

Establishment-critical narrative

Schröder acted in the best interests of Germany's political and economic sovereignty. Germany and the EU, now turning on the ex-Chancellor for ostensibly moral reasons, are simply bowing to US pressure to replace Russian gas and oil by American. Their moral claims are particularly remarkable given their long history of turning a blind eye to the numerous crimes against humanity committed by the US and the West. It was Schröder who refused to join the US in its devastating and unjustified invasion of Iraq.


Establishment split

CRITICAL

PRO

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