Germany Fears Being Crushed by U.S.-China Rivalry

Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg
Swen Pförtner/picture alliance via Getty Images

Germany Fears Being Crushed by U.S.-China Rivalry

Europeans fear being caught amidst a rising conflict.

A new podcast is fascinating Germany. It is hosted by former German political star Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg and left-wing political legend Gregor Gysi. Since its debut a few weeks ago, it has been consistently among the top German podcasts. In their July 5 episode, the two discussed the rising Chinese superpower and Germany’s response.

China is an economic and military giant, infamous for its human rights violations and mass surveillance. Germany depends on trade with China as well as on America’s military umbrella and Russia’s energy.

One question Guttenberg raised is on the minds of many in Europe: As the United States and China clash, will Germany be crushed between them?

Guttenberg told Austrian platform Opinion Leaders Network: “A great deal currently depends on the Chinese and Americans and very little on the Europeans. That must change in the future.” At Austria’s KitzSummit, he moderated a discussion on repositioning Europe in the world.

His views are similar to those of French President Emmanuel Macron. In April, after visiting China, Macron said Europe should not follow the America’s stance on China and Taiwan. Instead, it should become its own independent “third superpower.”

Guttenberg’s podcast revealed that this topic concerns Germany’s conservative and far-left politicians equally. Gysi is a strong critic of the U.S. and a fan of communism. Guttenberg wants strong trans-Atlantic relations. But when it comes to China, they both want strong relations that allow for trade.

Guttenberg’s stance toward China may surprise some, as he comes from a conservative political party that claims to uphold Christian democratic values. Furthermore, after World War ii, Germany closely allied itself with the U.S. against Communist Asia. This allowed Germany to rise from the ashes of war and shaped its politics ever since. But some 50 years ago, major geopolitical shifts began that have allowed Germany to take an independent stance between the two superpowers. Guttenberg draws attention to that in his podcast.

Diplomatic relations between Germany and the People’s Republic of China officially began in 1972, seven years before the U.S. took that same step. In his podcast, Guttenberg highlights one of the first prominent German political visitors to China who had a major impact on the two countries’ relations: Franz Josef Strauss.

Strauss is a political legend in Germany and of the same political family as Guttenberg. At the time of his visit to China, he was very popular and seen as a potential chancellor.

His visit to China was unusual. It was said that the “Emperor of China,” Mao Zedong, called the “King of Bavaria,” Franz Josef Strauss, for a meeting. The public knew little of Mao’s request and only learned of Strauss’s sudden disappearance on Jan. 16, 1975—the day the meeting took place.

Guttenberg is able to relate. He too was once seen as Germany’s next chancellor. In his podcast, he recounts when he first met Xi Jinping, China’s vice president at the time. The media speculated about the meeting between a future German chancellor and a future Chinese president. While Xi’s political career indeed developed that way, Guttenberg’s ended abruptly—at least for now.

Germany’s alliance with China is of great geopolitical relevance. But this personal connection that Strauss and Guttenberg have had with China’s leaders may be of even greater relevance.

During the Cold War, Germany and the U.S. fought together against all forms of communism and suppression. The lines have since blurred. The U.S. has accepted Communist thinking into its own political system, and Germany has entered lucrative trade and diplomatic relations with China and Russia. Both of these trends are equally dangerous for the United States. While one has weakened the U.S. from within, the other amasses danger from outside.

A Nazi underground movement has planned for this very scenario, as T. H. Tetens explained in Germany Plots With the Kremlin, written eight years after World War ii. Even the terminology of a “third superpower” is similar to that used by this underground movement. “[The Nazis] are dreaming of building a new third power bloc and declared that this new power combination would plunge the United States down from its present dizzy heights,” Tetens wrote.

Right now, the United States still enjoys superpower status. Its wealth, innovation and military strength is in many ways unmatched. But the gap between the U.S. and other nations is getting smaller, and we are reaching the point where an alliance of nations could “plunge the United States down from its present dizzy heights.”

The Bible speaks of this in numerous prophecies, such as Isaiah 23, Ezekiel 27 and Psalm 83. These prophecies warn of a trade alliance and a military alliance that will form against Israel—primarily the U.S. and Britain. The key to understanding these prophecies is explained in The United States and Britain in Prophecy, by Herbert W. Armstrong.

Such an alliance would never form without a cunning leader. The Bible puts particular emphasis on one man who will rise in the end time to lead this alliance and plunge our world into war. You can read these prophecies in Isaiah 10, Daniel 8, Habakkuk 1, Revelation 17 and numerous other passages. (Request a free copy of A Strong German Leader Is Imminent for more information.)

Mr. Armstrong thought this leader might have been Franz Josef Strauss. Mr. Armstrong died on Jan. 16, 1986; Strauss died two years later. The Trumpet, under the direction of editor in chief Gerald Flurry, continues to watch these prophecies. For over 10 years, Mr. Flurry has pointed to Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg as the most likely man to fulfill these prophecies.

This makes Guttenberg’s comments and current trends in Germany all the more relevant. Guttenberg upholds Strauss’s political heritage and advocates for Europe’s rise as an independent superpower. This is bringing the prophecies of the Bible alive. We are about to see a dramatic reshaping of our world according to the sure word of Bible prophecy and according to God’s perfect will (Revelation 17:17).