German Foreign Policy and the Libya Crisis

Alister Miskimmon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


German foreign policy has come under scrutiny due to its decision to abstain in the vote on UN Security Council Resolution 1973 in March 2011 on the Libyan no fly zone. Germany’s decision not to support France, the United Kingdom and the United States of America ensured that no common EU position emerged and NATO’s response to the crisis proved difficult. German foreign policy was caught between enlarging its influence and role in crisis management and reserving the right to reject involvement in operations that do not fit with its national interest. Drawing on the work of Robert Gilpin, the article argues that Germany’s decision to abstain on United Nations Security Council Resolution 1973 can be explained by understanding the cost/benefit calculations of the German government, pressured by the protracted Eurozone crisis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)392-410
JournalGerman Politics
Issue number4
Early online date19 Nov 2012
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • Germany
  • Libya
  • foreign policy

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