What does ODA do in military terms?

German foreign policy

Wolfram Hilz

To person

Prof. Dr. Wolfram Hilz has been a regular since 2005. Professor of Political Science at the Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn with a focus on European integration, conflict research and globalization issues. He has published numerous publications on questions of foreign and security policy as well as on European and global challenges.

Contact: »[email protected]«

After German unification, the Federal Republic experienced a noticeable increase in power and had to orientate itself in a changed international system. The federal government under Helmut Kohl is interested in stabilizing and expanding the European Community. Economic globalization harbors opportunities and problems, and German military operations are causing domestic political controversy.

After reunification in 1990, Helmut Kohl became increasingly involved in European integration. Chancellor Kohl (right) can be seen here with Mikhail Gorbachev, President of the USSR, in Bonn in November 1990. (& copy Federal Government / Schambeck)


Domestically, the united Germany was faced with a true "Herculean task" of incalculable proportions: it was necessary to overcome the economic, political and social division. After October 3, 1990, it was able to continue its foreign policy on the tried and tested foundation of the previous western and international cooperation structures in the Federal Republic. With the end of the communist systems in the east, the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact (formally in May 1991) and the endeavors of all Central and Eastern European reform states to distance themselves from the communist legacy and to approach the western cooperation systems of the EC and NATO as quickly as possible, the The GDR's foreign policy practically nothing. Only special development cooperations were continued for some time.

The focal points of all-German foreign policy to be considered in the following therefore by no means deliberately ignore the "legacy of the GDR". Rather, it becomes clear that the unified Germany seamlessly continued the previous fields of action and strategies of the "old" Federal Republic. This was due on the one hand to the continuity of personnel in the Kohl / Genscher government, and on the other to the diverse international transformation processes in which the Federal Republic, with its bilateral and multilateral links, was firmly integrated.