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The world is deluded if it thinks Angela Merkel is the salvation of the liberal order

She sells her strengths abroad, but weaponises her blandness at home

By Kati Krause   September 2017

Combo of pictures shows Angela Merkel, now German Chancellor, pictured in (top row, L-R): 1991, 1994, 1997, 1999, 2000 and (bottom row, L-R): 2001, 2003, 2009, 2010, 2013. Merkel, often voted Germany's most popular politician for her no-nonsense leadership style, faces elections on September 22, 2013. AFP PHOTO / GERMANY OUT (Photo credit should read -/AFP/Getty Images)

“In parliamentary work, ‘standstill’ may appear agonising, yet for voters it doesn’t hold any horror in times of crisis,” the late German journalist Roger Willemsen wrote after witnessing a Bundestag debate in March 2013, six months before the last general election in Germany. “The [Social Democratic] opposition may have found the government’s blockades a hard nut to crack—citizens however desire above all to maintain the status quo. For them, the inertia… isn’t an argument for voting anyone out. ‘Standstill’ simply has too good a reputation these days.”

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