German Chancellor Angela Merkel Is On Her Way Out—What is Next for Germany and the EU?
Added: (Mon Aug 26 2019)
Pressbox (Press Release) -
“Democracy lives off change“ German Chancellor Angela Merkel replied to a journalist about President Obama´s eminent departure during their final joint press conference in November 2016. In a surprising move, Merkel announced her own exit from the political spotlight in Hamburg last December when she declared she would not seek reelection after her term expired in 2021. “I believe we need to turn a new page” she declared. Her resignation means that for the first time in nearly two decades, Germany´s conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party will not have Merkel at the helm.
As a tribute to the steady leadership Merkel provided to not just Germany and the EU, but the United States, I have written a book entitled, My Partner, My Friend: The Relationship Between U.S. President Barack Obama and German Chancellor Dr. Angela Merkel to emphasis the importance of Transatlantic partnerships in the increased globalized world.
The 250 page researched manuscript (written in both English and German) outlines the unusual respect and closeness of the two as individuals, but also as world leaders of allied nations. As I argue in the book, “Because of the bond between them, Merkel let down her usual guard, and Obama managed to humanize Merkel—allowing the public to see a more human side to the normally reserved and stoic Chancellor.” While the two had their share of disagreements over their eight year working relationship, the respect they had for each other’s nation and their understanding of the need for allied nations to work together provided an incentive for the two to work together despite some profound differences of opinion and policy. Because of their partnership, they helped the world overcome the economic crisis of 2009, the Iran Nuclear Deal was signed, and the Paris Climate Accord was also signed. Given the rapid change in protocol in these policies in the recent administration, this book is a timely reflection of how important relationships such as Obama and Merkel’s is in maintaining global security.
Merkel´s departure could be attributed as another causality of western democracy in favor of the nationalism rhetoric that has swept across democratic countries recently. However, what can be said is that Merkel´s leadership provided an anchor of stability in the most turbulent times throughout the world. Her departure will be missed throughout the world and will leave a gap that will be difficult to fill.
Claudia Clark is an American political scientist and historian living outside of Munich where she served as at national Get Out The Vote (GOTV) coordinator for Democrats Abroad Germany. She holds a bachelor’s degree in history and public policy, and a master’s degree in history and social work.