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Archive for the tag “Berlin”

Germany Takes Command

On Nov. 9, Berlin will celebrate the 25th anniversary of the fall of the wall that divided the city during much of the Cold War. At the time, images of exuberant wall-breakers signaled the end of communism. A quarter-century later, the event seems to have also been a prelude to the rebirth of Berlin and the emergence of Germany as Europe’s supreme power, writes Pankaj Mishra.

Read Here – Bloomberg

Why Can’t Merkel Govern Germany?

Angela Merkel won Germany’s parliamentary elections by a landslide. Two months later, though, she still hasn’t managed to put together a government.

Read Here – BusinessWeek

50 Years After Kennedy, Obama Isn’t ‘Ein Berliner’: Fiscal Times

After Obama was elected, Der Spiegel, the magazine that serves as the German political barometer, called him the “World President.” But the German disappointment with Obama has been evident in its pages since. The magazine said that he did not deserve to win the 2012 election, and recently ran a cover with Obama’s picture below Kennedy’s, calling Obama Germany’s “Lost Friend.”

Read Here – Fiscal Times

Will They Walk The Talk?

China’s new leaders are talking nice. The country’s “ambitious” reform plans will provide “enormous” opportunities for the world, said premier Li Keqiang on May 27 at a business forum in Berlin, citing plans for industrialization and urbanization, as well as agricultural and technological upgrading. China and the U.S. must“build on past successes and open up new dimensions for the future,” stated president Xi Jinping while meeting the U.S. National Security Advisor Thomas Donilon in Beijing on the same day.

Read Here – Businessweek

Germany Has Won the Euro War Thanks To China

Germans are less and less interested in Southern Europe as a market for exports. The driver of German exports abroad are emerging markets (and the United States, to a lesser degree). Italy is only the seventh-largest importer of German goods, and Greece, Spain and Portugal are even further down the list. Notwithstanding a collapse of German exports to the “olive oil countries” (a definition I picked up some days ago in Germany), global German exports have remained steady. Berlin has to thank Beijing: In 2004, the Chinese purchased 20 billion euros worth of German products. Last year, they purchased 67 billion worth of goods, writes Stefano Casertano.

Read Here – The European

Forget Cyprus, The Real Savings Robbery Is In Britain

There are many reasons that the fate of Cyprus is being followed so closely in Britain. One is sympathy for those who are about to pay the price for the sins of a banking sector that was at one point seven times the size of the island’s economy. Another is shock at how the island, to which Britain granted independence just 53 years ago, now finds itself caught between Berlin, Moscow and Brussels. But the real lesson of Cyprus can be applied closer to home: when governments run out of money, they come after other people’s. Everyone is looking at Cyprus and asking: how safe are my savings?

Read Here – The Spectator

Barack Obama, a Parochial Leader for a Parochial Nation: RealClearPolitics

It wasn’t Barack Obama’s doing — at least not fully. The crowds in Paris and Berlin, and the Muslims in Cairo and Karachi, eager to be done with President George W. Bush, took the new standard-bearer of American power as one of their own, a cosmopolitan man keen to break with the embattled certitude of the Bush years.

Read Here – RealClearPolitics

Nazi Goebbels’ Step-Grandchildren Are Hidden Billionaires

In the spring of 1945, Harald Quandt, a 23-year-old officer in the German Luftwaffe, was being held as a prisoner of war by Allied forces in the Libyan port city of Benghazi when he received a farewell letter from his mother, Magda Goebbels — the wife of Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels.

The hand-written note confirmed the devastating news he had heard weeks earlier: His mother had committed suicide with her husband on May 1, after slipping their six children cyanide capsules in Adolf Hitler’s underground bunker in Berlin.

“My dear son! By now we’ve been in the Fuehrerbunker for six days already, Daddy, your six little siblings and I, to give our national socialistic lives the only possible, honorable ending,” she wrote. “Harald, dear son, I want to give you what I learned in life: Be loyal! Loyal to yourself, loyal to the people and loyal to your country!”

Read Here – Bloomberg

Germany’s Austerity Plans Will Beggar Europe

Has the eurozone crisis ended? Many politicians in Europe, including France’s president François Hollande, seem to think so. Well, not so fast. Far from ending, the crisis is yet to reach its most difficult phase.

It is easy to see why politicians claim the crisis is over. Greece has just been promised another €50bn, provided it accepts still more austerity, deregulation and privatisation. Elsewhere in the periphery, Ireland is in its sixth year of recession, Portugal is heading for major economic contraction, and Spain is going from bad to worse – but their governments are imposing austerity, and people appear to be putting up with it. Even core countries, including Italy and France, have accepted the need for balanced budgets. Across the eurozone, there is no effective opposition to the mantra of austerity emanating from Berlin.

Read Here – The Guardian

The Rise, Fall and Rebirth of Germany’s Capital

One might be tempted to draw comparisons, but it can also become an obsession. Still, that’s exactly what Berliners tend to do, at least when it comes to their city.

Whenever it happens, Berlin suddenly isn’t good enough for them, and they constantly feel compelled to draw comparisons — not with just any old cities, but with the crème de la crème. “Berlin, the German metropolis, can once again measure up to the likes of London, Paris and New York,” the city‘s then-mayor said shortly after the fall of the Berlin Wall. The die-hard residents of the German capital don’t like to aim any lower than that. They see Berlin as the sassy little sister of London, Paris and New York, a city that successfully contended for a spot in the exclusive family of cosmopolitan cities in the 1920s.

Read Here – Der Speigel


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