Complicated relationship

Today, the Chancellor is officially addressing the challenges facing the German science system: a commission of experts wants to hand over their report to him.


business as usual

looks different.

After the debacle in Paris, people in the federal government are worried.

There is also great unrest in the EU.

French President Emmanuel Macron said this week that he would not rule out sending ground troops to Ukraine.

He had paraded Scholz on the open stage after Scholz had previously pilloried him.

"Both's vanity and their rivalry have made Scholz and Macron blind to the damage they are causing in Europe," writes my colleague Marina Kormbaki in her editorial, which is worth reading.

Both Scholz and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, the USA and several other EU states have now confirmed that they do not plan to send ground troops to Ukraine.

Scholz and Macron will next have to ask themselves how they want to get their relationship back under control.

Europe cannot afford a Franco-German rift.

  • Delivery of cruise missiles: British government contradicts Scholz on Taurus issue

Biden's Michigan problem

It's actually good news for Joe Biden: As expected, he was confirmed as the Democratic presidential candidate in the primaries in the US state of Michigan that night.

But he doesn't necessarily have reason to be happy.

Because the past few weeks have shown that the US President has a serious problem in Michigan - and not only there.

Arab Americans and Muslims, most of whom typically vote Democratic, have mobilized against him over his Israel policy.

The protest movement dubbed him “Genocide Joe” and called for people not to vote for him or his opponent in the primary elections in Michigan.

Biden wants to continue supporting Israel with money and weapons in the fight against Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

His critics want an immediate ceasefire.

This could be dangerous for Biden.

Michigan is considered a swing state.

Biden depends on every vote here.

“This state could even be the decisive one in the presidential election in November,” says my colleague Bernhard Zand, who reports from the USA for SPIEGEL.

Biden's problem also extends far beyond Michigan.

"There are many young leftists, blacks and Muslims, of Arab origin, even Jewish Americans, who are very critical of Biden's Israel policy," says Bernhard.

This could cost Biden important votes in the election.

  • Diplomacy, pressure, sanctions: How to assert yourself as US president in Israel 

New attempt for the supply chain law

At the beginning of the month, the FDP's no to the EU supply chain law caused anger in Brussels.

After almost two years of negotiations, the Council, Parliament and Commission agreed on a compromise.

The proposed directive should hold companies accountable for child labor, exploitation and pollution in their supply chains.

But then the FDP made it clear: they would not agree.

The federal government would have had to abstain - which would have practically seemed like a no.

The vote was ultimately canceled.

There was great irritation in Brussels about the lack of unity in the federal government.

Now, as my colleague Timo Lehmann reports, there will be a surprise vote by the member states today.

However, it is unclear whether there is now a majority among them for the law.

Italy's voting behavior is now likely to be crucial.

If the vote is canceled again at short notice today, the vote could still take place on Friday.

The Greens hope that the FDP will be changed or that the Chancellor will take action.

"I expect Chancellor Scholz to use his directive authority for human rights and for Germany as a reliable negotiating partner," EU Green Party politician Anna Cavazzini told SPIEGEL.

Hope apparently dies last in the traffic lights.

  • Blockades by the FDP in Brussels: “If a result is bad, you have to be allowed to say no” 

Read the current SPIEGEL editorial here

  • Now is not the time for ego trips:

    Ukraine is increasingly on the defensive and the USA is retreating.

    Germany and France must show leadership.

    Instead, Chancellor Scholz and President Macron are openly expressing their rivalry.

    A disaster. 

Click here for the current daily quiz

The starting question today: In 1955, the Eastern Bloc agreed on a military alliance in the “Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance”.

What name was it known by in the West?

Winner of the day… the frigate “Hessen”.

The breaking news came late on Tuesday evening: The German warship, which is deployed in the Red Sea to protect merchant ships, repelled the first attack by the Houthi militia.

According to the dpa news agency, the ship involved in the EU military mission “Aspides” successfully fought two enemy aircraft targets.

Only about a week ago, Defense Minister Boris Pistorius visited the soldiers when they were anchored off Crete with the “Hessen”.

He said goodbye to them before their journey to the Red Sea.

For Pistorius, it was the first military operation he has launched.

It is considered the most dangerous mission in the history of the German Navy since the founding of the Federal Republic.

It should be a relief for the minister that the “Hessen” started this mission successfully.

Pistorius himself is traveling in Bavaria today.

It's once again about his prestige project: the German combat brigade, which is to be permanently stationed in Lithuania.

Pistorius visits various units affected by the formation of the brigade.

However, the minister has come under a lot of pressure with his lighthouse project.

It will cost billions.

So far, Pistorius has neither quantified exactly how much the sum is - nor can he say where the money will come from.

  • Bundeswehr brigade for Lithuania:

    Prestige project without a price tag 

The latest reports from the night

  • “It looks like the end of the world”:

    It is far too warm for the time of year, and dry and windy: In Texas, several bush fires have gotten out of control and are spreading rapidly.

    The governor declared a disaster.

  • Apple is apparently giving up on electric car development:

    Things weren't going well in the Apple Car team right from the start: the company repeatedly changed the leadership and strategy of the unit.

    Now it should probably be dissolved completely.

  • Bird flu has reached Antarctica:

    Antarctica was one of the few places where bird flu was not yet circulating.

    The virus has now reached the Antarctic mainland.

    Researchers are alarmed.

I would particularly like to recommend this story to you today:

Kühnert's legacy:

Within just a few weeks, Philipp Türmer has become Olaf Scholz's toughest critic in the SPD.

Although he has only led the SPD youth association with its around 70,000 members for three months, some see him as the next Kevin Kühnert.

Türmer wants to make the association a real power factor again that can put the Social Democrats under pressure.

In terms of ambition and sense of mission, he seems ambitious.

How far can he take it?

Is he about to have a lightning career?

Can he drive his party?

My colleague Christian Teevs accompanied the Juso boss.

I wish you a good start to the day.

Yours, Maria Fiedler, deputy head of the SPIEGEL capital office