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At the GLOBALO breakfast at the Munich Security Conference, Dr. August Hanning, the former president of the German Federal Secret Service (Bundesnachrichtendienst BND 1998- 2005), who later  served as  State Secretary and the most senior civil servant in the German Federal Ministry of the Interior until his retirement in 2009, discussed possible solutions to the Syrian crisis.

The ex spy director is still close to the now finance minister Wolfgang Schäuble, who is expected to take over from Merkel, in case she leaves office earlier during her term.

Hanning knows a lot of what is going on behind closed doors and is well connected in the senior club of spy-directors from Washington to Moscow, Riad and Beijing. He is a calm and relaxed analyst with excellent insights into Germany, Europe, and the Middle East.

Already n December of 2015, his was alarmed about the refugee policy of German Chancellor Angela Merkel‘s, earlier than most. He rung the alarm bells.

As a guest at Globalo’s breakfast event on “Codes of Tolerance: Christian Minorities and Daesh”, he agreed with the general consensus in the room that “safe zones should be established in Syria.”  

  • Any kind of solution to the Syrian crisis first has to address the security issues of the people on the ground.
  • The establishment of safe zones requires somebody who could guarantee its functioning.
  • Turkey, a NATO partner and ally of the United States, could be a potential partner in such an endeavor.