Globalization, or the process of strengthening the international bonds between countries in political, economic, and media sectors, is currently one of the major threats to the autonomy of many states. Germany is one of the countries that have a great influence on world politics, yet it has a history of foreign campaigns and international relations that affect its decisions. The tension between Russia and the USA and the immigration crisis are the forces that currently have the most influence on German autonomy. For instance, Germany is the NATO ally, thus it has to share the opinions of the USA on Russian aggression in Eastern Europe. The country fears to spoil relationships with Americans, so it cannot object even to such violations as the NSA scandal of spying on the German officials. However, Germany is highly dependent on Russian resources like natural gas (O’Neil et al. 261), so its government is hesitant about taking a strict position on this issue.
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After the defeat of World War II, Germany was divided between the Western allies and the USSR (O’Neil et al. 224). The former created a capitalistic system in the country and supported the democratic rule, which was based on the prevalence of liberal ideas of human rights, freedom, and equality. The Federal Republic of Germany showed outstanding results in rebuilding the country’s economy, yet the same growth had also taken place in the past, for instance, before World War II. Germans managed to cope with destructions from World War I and even to rebuild their army and production under the harsh regime of Adolf Hitler. Democracy does not influence economic performance but rather serves as the base for creating diplomatic bonds with countries who find this system of values to be their fundamental feature.
Political stability is also not guaranteed by democracy. The immigration crisis is a great proof of this statement. According to the German democratic position on citizenship, anyone who was born in the country and received all the necessary documents can become a country’s national. Moreover, Germany provides placement for refugees from the Middle East. The country has a deep stigma of post-WWII realization of racial crimes. Nowadays, the situation has turned the other way, where the local population is suffering from immigrants not wishing to assimilate and suppressing the traditional German culture (O’Neil et al. 264). The government prefers to tolerate this situation for the sake of democratic values, while ordinary Germans suffer. The country does not head directly to the political instability as it is in France where the anti-immigrant rhetoric allows nationalist leaders to gain popularity. However, if the situation continues to worsen, Germans might take up patriotism instead of democracy.
Collective identity also plays a role in a country’s economy. It is a concept of how a group of people defines itself through different elements like religion, race, culture, etc. The collective identity in Germany is based on multiculturalism. It shifts the distribution of material and non-material goods to the benefit of minorities to ensure the mistakes of the past are not repeated. Many refugees receive monthly income from a country, the sum of which is one of the highest in Europe. This policy makes local taxpayers angry, yet they cannot express their opinion publicly since it could be misinterpreted as the rehabilitation of Nazism (O’Neil et al. 251).
O’Neill, Patrick H. et al. Cases in Comparative Politics. W.W. Norton & Company, 2015.