Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg at the 47th Munich Security Conference in 2011. ©Kai Mörk

Former German Defense Minister Guttenberg Back in German Politics?

Berlin, Germany – Former German Minister of Defense Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg, is believed to plot his political comeback into German politics. With federal elections looming this year, Angela Merkel’s Bavarian sister party hopes that the star-politician will help them win the people’s votes.

Guttenberg however, does not want to get back into the German Parliament yet. According to reports by “Der Spiegel” and “Focus Online,” the former minister is believed to have only a supportive role during the election campaign. In a long conversation with CSU Secretary General Andreas Scheuer in Munich, Guttenberg has reportedly said that he “doesn’t want to take somebody else’s place.”

Although many Germans remember the politician’s plagiarism affair, there is some approval of his comeback. A pedestrian on the streets of Berlin said to Corduene: “I was quite disappointed when I heard of his dissertation and the plagiarism affair, but as a minister, he did a good job. The suspension of compulsory military service helped our family a lot; my son was to go to university directly after school, without losing one year for a job he does not want to do.”

In recent years Guttenberg had repeatedly declined a return into German politics, but he could not help commenting on current developments. In 2014 repeatedly criticized the Federal Government for not supporting the Kurds enough.

“For weeks now innocent people in Iraq and Syria are being slaughtered by the militias of the ‘Islamic State,'” he said back then in a guest contribution to Germany’s biggest tabloid newspaper “Bild.” “And what is Germany doing? Pursuing a safe protection vest policy.” That was before Germany decided to arm the Kurdish Peshmerga forces.

Many Kurds hope for a comeback of the Bavarian politician. Kurdish political sciences student Alan Qaradaxi hopes that the former minister “gives Germany a more active role in world politics.”

“Germany is a great nation with a strong economy and an important foreign policy. Berlin could, in a positive way, get much more involved in the Middle East, especially in Kurdistan. A closer relationship to oil-rich Kurdistan could also have positive impacts on the German economy. The United States have Israel as their Middle East partner, Germany should build up Kurdistan as theirs.”

Somebody else who cannot wait for Guttenberg’s return is his party leader Horst Seehofer. Guttenberg would be the perfect successor, especially against Seehofer’s internal rival Markus Soder, who repeatedly stood against the Bavarian Prime Minister.

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