The threat to the West from a reunited Germany is about as great as the threat from space aliens, says a Brigham Young University professor of managerial economics.
Phillip J. Bryson said the United States and other nations may fear a German military buildup, but the Germans are much more inclined to fight - and win - a war with spreadsheets and exports. He said this has far-reaching implications for American business.East and West Germany will take a major step toward reunification July 2 with the merging of their currencies, economies and social policies, a development that has created fears in the West of a strong, politically reunited Germany.
"We still have a `Mission Impossible' mentality in this country, a Hollywood-based need for an opponent," said Bryson. The economist just returned from a visit to several universities in East and West Germany and will begin a Fulbright fellowship to West Germany in 1991.
"The Germans of today are different from what they were in 1939 or even 1945."
Instead of fearing the merger of the two Germanies, smart Americans and American businesses will look for ways to gain market presence in the new Germany. If they do, they will gain access to the huge, sleeping Eastern European market, he said.
"We must now recognize that it is an economic world, not a political-military world," he said.
"Doing business in the Soviet Union, you've got this problem of money: How do you ever get anything out?" he asked. "If you go into East Germany as of July 2, however, you've got a very, very strong currency that represents world money."
And with the European Community coming in 1992, Bryson added, American businesses in the new Germany will continue to benefit.
Most Americans don't realize that the currency merger heralds a significantly new economic state for the East Germans, said Bryson.