Franco-German Cooperation Reaches New Heights

French President Emmanuel Macron (second from left) and German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier (second from right) in Muenster, Germany, on May 28
Sascha Schuermann/Getty Images

Franco-German Cooperation Reaches New Heights

‘At the heart of Europe,’ Macron stirs Germans to leave their past behind.

On invitation of German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, French President Emmanuel Macron paid a state visit to Germany from May 26 to 28. This highest form of diplomatic visit is extremely rare; the last such visit of a French president occurred 24 years ago. Macron’s message to Germany was even more noteworthy.

“I am particularly honored to speak to you here in Dresden today as the first French president since the reunification,” Macron said to the enthusiastic cheering of the crowd. Switching between French and German, he pleaded for a stronger Europe and warned that Europe could die unless dramatic action was taken. He noted that Europe stands at an “unprecedented moment in its history.”

This speech and his visit as a whole showed how close France and Germany stand despite some major disagreements and global conflicts.

Dresden’s Importance

Dresden, which Macron called “a city of hope,” was chosen deliberately for his passionate speech. Macron explained:

We are here in Dresden, the twin city of the European capital Strasbourg—the metaphor of this project. The war devastated this city. The Frauenkirche was bombed in 1945 and rebuilt in 2005, and this church rises like a message of hope into the sky. Dresden as a whole city is a kind of phoenix from the ashes, a lesson in hope, a historic city that has managed to turn to the future. Dresden has always been ahead of the times when it comes to change, from the dissident movements of the German Democratic Republic to Helmut Kohl’s call for unity in 1989 in front of this very Frauenkirche.

Dresden’s destruction in World War ii is one of the most emotional topics in German history; many still harbor deep resentment against America and Britain because of it. But Macron didn’t mention why Dresden was destroyed: Germany’s enthrallment with Adolf Hitler and other ugly details.

Instead, Macron had a hopeful message for Germany. Dresden rose as a phoenix from the ashes. It stands as a symbol of German revival, reunification and European cooperation.

Macron believes the city points to Europe’s future. Just before European elections on June 9, he sought to inspire Germany and France to choose a united Europe.

Speaking out against the rise of the far right, he said: “We must rediscover the strength and the commitment to defend Europe everywhere. … Germany can count on France. France is counting on Germany. Europe can count on us. We are counting on Europe.”

Demonstrating Unity

On Jan. 22, 1963, the Élysée Treaty laid the foundation for the reconciliation and cooperation of France and Germany. The partnership was strengthened in 2019 with the signing of the Treaty of Aachen by then German Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Macron.

The German Foreign Office wrote, “There is no other country Germany has closer ties with than France. We are each other’s most important partners and allies.” Germany greatly honors Macron. Steinmeier even presented Macron with the International Award of the Peace of Westphalia, a private prize awarded every two years to someone who has contributed to European unity.

Despite German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Macron’s differences, the two have continually sought closer cooperation. Scholz said, “We will always come to an agreement.” Macron knows Scholz has no chance of being reelected, however, and has already met with his main rival, Friedrich Merz.

Given the historic conflict between these two countries, this cooperation appears as a glimmer of hope. But there is a dark side to it. Ignoring it will not bring lasting peace.

Military Cooperation

During Macron’s visit, the two countries signed important military agreements, most notably the joint development of long-range missiles. They also declared “significant progress” in the joint development of a land combat system, which will feature a new main battle tank to replace the Leclerc and Leopard 2, as well as the latest-generation air combat system, which will feature a new fighter jet.

We must remember the goal of these projects. In 2018, Macron called for a “true European army” with the goal “to protect ourselves with respect to China, Russia and even the United States of America.”

Consider this statement in relation to the bombing of Dresden in 1945. Wasn’t it America that saved Europe from a tyrannical regime? Would Germany have been better off if it could have “defended” itself against the United States at the time? A growing number of German politicians think so.

Macron is empowering Germany, and he specifically talks about being independent from America. This might sound wonderful to some, but if Germany gets another dictator, it will be near impossible to stop him.

Anchored to Germany

Europe today is deeply dependent on Germany. Germany houses Europe’s strongest economy and industry, while France’s national debt exceeds its gross domestic product and the country is often plagued by uncontrollable riots. Decoupling from Germany seems impossible at this point.

But German ambitions are also closely linked to Europe. It can’t achieve superpower status alone, and European unity is impossible with French rivalry.

Thus, Germany’s and France’s goals are dependent on a tightly integrated Europe.

But it didn’t need to come to this point. France deliberately decided to bind itself to Germany, even if it meant betraying the U.S. and Britain.

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher warned in 1995: “You have not anchored Germany to Europe. You have anchored Europe to a newly dominant, unified Germany. In the end, my friends, you’ll find it will not work.”

Betrayal Prophesied

Franco-German cooperation has been nurtured and strengthened for more than 60 years. Sadly, this partnership will lead to one of the greatest betrayals in modern history.

France rejected the U.S. and Britain and turned wholeheartedly to Germany, which leaves it in a very difficult situation. For example, Macron doesn’t understand Germany’s reluctance to support Ukraine. This is one of many signs that this relationship is flawed as Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry’s explained in his article “France’s Deadly Ignorance About Germany.”

In his article, Mr. Flurry discussed biblical prophecies that show how the cooperation between these two countries endangers our world. The late Herbert W. Armstrong also prophesied that Germany and France would be part of the seventh and final resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire.

This is particularly astonishing because France is a descendant of the Israelite tribe of Reuben; America and Britain descend from his brother Joseph—as explained in The United States and Britain in Prophecy, by Mr. Armstrong. Germany is biblical Assyria—the nation God used to punish Israel anciently and will use again (Isaiah 10:5).

How Cooperation Will Come

French and German cooperation today is ultimately misguided. The Bible warns it will lead to devastating worldwide nuclear conflagration. However, the coming conflict will lead to the divine intervention of Jesus Christ and the repentance of our world.

Notice a key feature of that coming world: “In that day shall there be a highway out of Egypt to Assyria, and the Assyrian shall come into Egypt, and the Egyptian into Assyria, and the Egyptians shall serve with the Assyrians. In that day shall Israel be the third with Egypt and with Assyria, even a blessing in the midst of the land: Whom the Lord of hosts shall bless, saying, Blessed be Egypt my people, and Assyria the work of my hands, and Israel mine inheritance” (Isaiah 19:23-25).

There will be a highway between Israel, Assyria and Egypt. Under the righteous leadership of Jesus Christ, Germany, France and the other modern descendants of Israel will unite into the leading nations of the world. Today, France and Germany are often called the motor of a united Europe. But after Christ’s return, these two nations will be part of the motor that will bring prosperity to the whole world.

Before this can happen, though, our world must learn some important lessons.