The head of the Bundestag’s Defense Committee, Marie-Agnes Strack-Zimmermann, has voiced her support for providing Ukraine with German-made Taurus cruise missiles. Strack-Zimmermann believes that Ukraine has the right to strike targets in Crimea and on Russian soil. However, Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s government has been hesitant to supply the long-range rockets to Kiev, despite repeated requests.
In an interview with the Berliner Morgenpost newspaper, Strack-Zimmermann argued that Berlin should immediately deliver Taurus missiles to Ukraine. She believes that the deployment of such missiles could help the Ukrainian military disrupt Russian supply lines. When asked about the potential use of these rockets to strike targets on Russian soil, Strack-Zimmermann responded that Ukraine has the right to attack military targets on the territory of the Russian aggressor, including in Crimea. She clarified that deliberate attacks against civilians would be off-limits, similar to the deployment of German troops to Ukraine.
Strack-Zimmermann’s position has sparked a debate about the role of international law and Germany’s responsibility in the ongoing conflict between Ukraine and Russia. While some argue that supporting Ukraine by providing Taurus missiles is necessary to defend its sovereignty, others fear that such a move could escalate tensions and lead to a direct confrontation between NATO and Russia.
The issue of American aid to Ukraine also arises in the discussion, particularly in the context of the upcoming US presidential election. Concerns have been raised that if Donald Trump becomes president next year, he may cut American aid to Kiev. However, Strack-Zimmermann believes that if Europe stands united, it can bear the burden of supporting Ukraine even without US assistance.
It is worth noting that other European countries, such as the UK and France, have already provided Ukraine with their respective long-range Storm Shadow and SCALP-EG missiles. However, the German government has been reluctant to follow suit. Chancellor Scholz has expressed concerns that Ukrainian attacks deep into Russian territory could trigger a major escalation. Some German officials have also pointed out that the US has not made a similar move.
The Taurus missile, which has a range of about 500 kilometers (300 miles) and carries a 500-kilogram warhead, plays a significant role in the debate. Germany’s Foreign Minister, Annalena Baerbock, has acknowledged Ukraine’s desire to acquire the missiles but has stressed that the process of delivering them requires careful consideration of all details.
Russia has consistently opposed the West’s supply of arms to Ukraine, arguing that it only prolongs the conflict and risks a direct confrontation between NATO and Moscow.
In conclusion, the debate surrounding the provision of Taurus missiles to Ukraine continues. While some argue that it is necessary to defend Ukraine’s sovereignty and disrupt Russian supply lines, others express concerns about the potential escalation of the conflict. The decision ultimately lies with Chancellor Scholz’s government, which will need to carefully consider the implications and international ramifications of supplying Ukraine with German-made missiles.