ABSTRACT

This chapter outlines and discusses four possible futures shaping and being shaped by Germany: the future of the war in Ukraine, the future of Russia as a foreign policy actor and as a challenge for the West, the future of European security, and the future of the international political system. From a policymaking perspective, gauging the effects of developments related to each future involves understanding their different but overlapping timeframes. Together, these four futures create the immediate, intermediate, and longer-term perspectives within which Germany will need to make hard choices. A new bipolar world, driven by two entwined “cold wars,” carries the grimmest implications for Germany and its allies. The choices that Germany makes and the leadership it exercises in helping to craft an end to the war in Ukraine, in coping with the Russia that emerges from the war, and in defining the European security agenda will be critical.