Vladimir Putin is fomenting a crisis in Ukraine to undermine Euro-Atlantic institutions and drive a wedge between the US and its allies. Germany is the crucial link. Historical, cultural, and economic relations with Russia make the new German coalition government, led by Olaf Scholz of the Social Democratic Party, especially vulnerable to Russia’s influence.
German policy towards Russia is shaped by history. World War II still influences the worldview of many Germans. Pacifism is engrained at the core of German identity.