Early last year, as the West was gearing up to intervene militarily in the overthrow of Libyan dictator Muammar Qadhafi, Germany made it clear it wanted no part. In March, when America, England, France and a host of other states passed UN Resolution 1973 sanctioning nato intervention in Libya, Germany joined Russia and China in abstaining from the vote.
Germany refused to participate because it believed military action would result in too much violence and bloodshed. “Any military operation brings civilian victims,” explained Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle. Chancellor Angela Merkel echoed those remarks in her explanation of Germany’s non-participation. Berlin’s primary concern, the world was told, was that nato intervention would produce too many civilian casualties.