Some 320,000 GermansTake to Streets in Germany against Obama’s TTIP
Sept. 19, 2016 (EIRNS)—On Sept. 17, public rallies held in most of Germany’s major cities against the TTIP (Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership) and CETA (Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement ) drew up to 320,000 protesters. The largest rallies took place in Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, Stuttgart, and Frankfurt, the main target of the actions being the German government and the EU Commission, but the implicit target was Obama.
The Stop TTIP organizers said that 65,000 rallied in Hamburg, 55,000 in Cologne, 70,000 in Berlin, 25.000 in Munich, 50,000 in Frankfurt am Main, 40,000 in Stuttgart, and 15,000 in Leipzig.
Although the government in Berlin supports the CETA deal between the EU and Canada, it is divided on TTIP: Chancellor Angela Merkel is for it, Vice Chancellor Gabriel against. Gabriel’s support for CETA, however, has come under strong attack from his own Social Democratic Party base, and certainly also was a factor in the SPD’s losses in the Sept. 18, Berlin elections for the city-state parliament.
The main shortcoming of the nationwide protests was that they were motivated by a lot of ecology issues, and lacked any real alternative like the New Silk Road paradigm, but the defense of labor and social standards against deeper-going liberalizations and deregulations as envisaged by CETA and TTIP did play a role for protesters as well.