The Reluctant World Power Flexes Its Muscles. BONN: "And what do you think Germany should do if the oil producing countries impose another oil embargo?" I asked my taxicab skipper in Berlin. The immediate answer: "Saddle up the Bundeswehr, charge down to the Middle East, and knock all those sheiks off their high horse!" Outspoken words indeed from a citizen of a nation bent for three decades on staying on the outer periphery of the world political arena. Yet they symbolize, perhaps, a significant change in attitude. West Germany, economic colossus yet political dwarf, is at last awakening to a new political awareness. Of course, not every German breathes as much political fire as the taxi drivers of Berlin. They seem to be a unique breed. To most Germans, the very thought of their nation once again becoming a major world power is repugnant. It holds too many aching memories. After World War II, the government in Bonn faithfully charted a course leading to both a phoenix-like economic resurrection and virtually total political disengagement.
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