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Der Standard - Austria | Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Berlin must throw light upon events

The government in Berlin should clarify what happened in the air strike in Afghanistan without consideration for the current election campaign, writes the daily Der Standard. Federal elections are slated for September 27 in Germany. "Of course this is a disaster for the government with so little time before the elections, especially as more and more Germans are asking: 'What are we doing in Afghanistan in the first place?' The Left party has been calling for a complete withdrawal since its inception, and the Greens are also very critical of the German deployment. And it only takes a few votes to decide matters if the election results are close. ... At the moment Berlin has only one option: relentless explanation, with no regard for the elections. The citizens and soldiers have a right to know what really happened in Afghanistan, and why the decision to order an air strike was taken. Anyone who now tries to gloss things over or cover them up only risks losing support for the controversial deployment and plays into the hands of those who are calling for an unrealistic, immediate and total withdrawal."

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