In September 1914, when the German victory in the First World War appeared feasible, the government of Imperial Germany introduced the Septemberprogramm as an official war aim ( Kriegsziel ), which was secretly endorsed by Chancellor Theobald von Bethmann-Hollweg (1909–17), whereby, upon achieving battlefield victory, Germany would annex territories from western Poland to form the Polish Border Strip ( Polnischer Grenzstreifen , c. 30,000 km. 2 ). Lebensraum would be realised by way of ethnic cleansing , the forcible removal of the native Slavic and Jewish populations, and the subsequent repopulation of the border strip with ethnic-German colonists; likewise, the colonisations of Lithuania and Ukraine; yet military over-extension lost the war for Imperial Germany, and the Septemberprogramm went unrealised. 
Martin Sandbu, an economics writer at the Financial Times , has pushed back at multiplying complaints about Germany’s large surplus by pointing out that as long as the German current account surplus is stable, rather than growing, it is not subtracting from demand overseas. While narrowly true, this glides over the fact that Germany’s surplus has been rising steadily as a share of its GDP for almost two decades, shooting up from a deficit in 2001 to an per cent surplus in 2016, and thus imposing a serious drag for much of the time.