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  • Willkommen. Can I Call You Joe?
    Posted by John M. Doyle 6:48 PM on Feb 06, 2009

    Vice President Joe Biden is off to Germany today to address the 45th Munich Conference on Security Policy, also known as the Wehrkunde Conference.

    The National Security Adviser, retired Marine Corps Gen. James Jones, is also attending the annual gathering of government officials and defense policy experts to discuss Trans-Atlantic security issues.

    In addition to his speech Saturday (12:20 p.m. Local Time in Germany), Biden will be holding bilateral meetings with foreign leaders including:

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel; Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk; Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko; French President Nicholas Sarkozy; British Foreign Secretary David Miliband; NATO Secretary General Jakob Gijsbert de Hoop Scheffer and German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier. 

    It’ll be interesting to hear what’s said publicly – and leaked privately -- about missile defense in Eastern Europe, Russian tantrums about missiles on the Baltic and shutting down natural gas pipelines, and extending NATO membership to Ukraine and Georgia.  

    The White House says Biden will be urging cooperation among U.S. allies as they confront security and economic issues in a post-Cold War, post-9/11 world.

    Biden is likely to get in a little more horse-trading that evening at a reception he’s giving for U.S. and German lawmakers, followed by a dinner being hosted by Horst Seehofer, head of the German state of Bavaria.

    On Sunday, Biden will meet separately with representatives of recent combatants Georgia and Russia: Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili and Russian Deputy Prime Minister Ivanov.

    Tags: ar99, Germany, U.S., nationalsecurity, NATO

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