The "New York Times" makes a devastating verdict on the federal government. Right in the middle of the critics: a prominent CDU politician.
Berlin / Brussels – The grand coalition is lagging behind the end of the year – only on Sunday evening, Union and SPD have again postponed a long-awaited decision. The rather sad state of the coalition in Berlin apparently also occurs abroad: The New York Times has published an analysis of the EU's political situation over the weekend. The German Federal Republic and its Chancellor play an inglorious lead role in it.
TimesCorrespondent Steven Erlanger does not save with drastic diagnoses: There is talk of a "zombie coalition", "unable to act and unwilling to die"; by German Chancellor Merkel as "lame duck" – and by Emmanuel Macron, who sets out to fill a leading vacuum in Europe.
Even more significant than the commenting words of the journalist are expert statements in the article. And harsh Merkel criticism from its own ranks. The former CDU hope bearer Norbert Röttgen (now chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee in the Bundestag) expresses itself with harsh words.
Angela Merkel and the CDU: Röttgen sharply criticizes – "She knows everything and does nothing"
"Germany is currently a complete failure in all respects," quotes the US sheet Röttgen. "I can see no European policy line, the Foreign Minister is a failure and the Chancellor knows all this and does nothing," said the CDU man on. Merkel's Foreign Minister Heiko Maas recently caused resentment with a performance in Turkey.
There is a "collapse of competence and energy," Röttgen said. An unusually drastic statement – which once again suggests that in addition to the SPD, parts of the CDU have become fed up with GroKo. And with her possibly also Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Merkel and GroKo: Röttgen replaces on ZDF
In the ZDF program "Berlin directly" on Sunday evening put Röttgen. The grand coalition basically only asks itself how it can stay in office. However, the benchmark must be to face the problems that are worrying people and also to make Europe more effective. Looking at his comments in the New York Times The CDU politician now stressed that he had commented on the matter.
However, the estimation of the British political scientist Mark Leonard in the report of the. Was also less flattering New York Times out. There is a "shift in the balance of power in Europe," he says. "With the slowdown in the euro and refugee crisis, Germany has become much less important to the organization of the European Union." Meanwhile, France's President Emmanuel Macron has given up waiting for Germany – and no longer shy away from conflict with Berlin.
Merkel, CDU and the power struggle: Merz opened the round of criticism
The unpleasant words meet with violent debates in the CDU. Also Merkel is doing after the caucus CDU result in Thuringia in the criticism. Friedrich Merz had opened the round last week. Everyone expects "political leadership and clear statements", but they were missing, he said on ZDF.
For years, therefore, put a "fog" over the country. "I can not imagine that this way of governing will continue until the end of 2021," he mused meaningfully. Merz apparently wants to go on the offensive at the upcoming CDU party congress.
Merkel criticism: Koch also joins in, Röttgen already attested a "vacuum"
Similarly, the former Hessian Prime Minister Roland Koch had expressed. He apparently took CDU boss Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer with the criticism. "Today, personalities who are marked by a vision and show a willingness to risk their political existence for this vision," he wrote in a contribution to the magazine Cicero, With regard to the climate discussion, he accused the federal government and the CDU leadership in particular, not to participate in the debate: the "disclaimer of leadership and especially the Federal Chancellor" must "stop".
Also Röttgen had previously demanded a substantive and personal renewal of his party. "We need new heads," he said on Friday morning show the ARD. The problems of the CDU are currently "lacking in citizens' belief that we are up to date," said the former Minister for the Environment. "We have to fill this vacuum." For this, "absolutely" new heads are needed that have "something to say".
CDU in the constant dispute: Merkel in the criticism – also CSU wants to debate the situation
However, the situation in the CDU remains complex – apparently even for declared critics of the status quo. Röttgen himself warned his party at the same time before discussions on human resources and criticized the CDU politician Friedrich Merz liberated debate on the role of Merkel. The substantive and personal renewal can not be "replaced by self-destruction," he warned. "The problems of the CDU are not in a lack of discussions on human resources."
Merkel also has supporters in her own ranks. In addition to Interior Minister Horst Seehofer (CSU) as well as the Schleswig-Holstein Party Vice Karin Prien. "We are just witnessing how indecent is fired from the sidelines," she said, looking at Merz and Co. The whole CDU took Bundestagsfraktionsvize Casten Linnemann in the obligation: they had forgotten about the success of the person Merkel, "the differences in the matter What does the Union stand for? "he emphasized at the end of October.
Incidentally, in view of the crisis at the sister party CDU, the CSU executive also wants to discuss the situation of the Union on Monday. So far, the CSU party leader Markus Söder has largely kept out of the CDU power struggle and campaigned for stability. In a recent poll, more voters of the Union parties had identified Söder as a promising chancellor candidate, as CDU leader Kramp-Karrenbauer (see below).
In view of this overall situation, the gloomy prophecy of a well-known astrologer is still the slightest problem for the two strong women in the CDU.
Klingbeil demands power word from Merkel and AKK
For now came harsh criticism from the coalition partner SPD added. After the adjournment of the coalition decision, the SPD demands from the CDU leadership a power word in the party-internal dispute over the basic pension. In view of the contradictory statements from the CDU, the question arises whether CDU chief Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer and Chancellor Angela Merkel "finally interfere with the debate, prevail, sometimes determine the course of the Union," said SPD Secretary General Lars Klingbeil on Monday in the ZDF "Morgenmagazin".
The union must clarify its position within this week, so that the coalition committee can decide as planned on Sunday on the Grundrente, said Klingbeil. The top committee would then have to "finally put a stop to the basic rent".
Klingbeil even criticized the Grundrente for a "blockade in parts of the Union". The image of the German government could hardly be worse these days, which was hotly debated on Sunday evening at Anne Will. Likewise, "hard but fair" was discussed about GroKo and its ability to act.
After the disastrous election results of the CDU and SPD, Merkel also meets with criticism elsewhere. Juso boss Kevin Kühnert gets in the ARD talk "Anne Will" for a sweeping attack against Chancellor Angela Merkel. Nevertheless, no Bundestag party like the Munich Merkur * wants to analyze new elections.
fn (with material from AFP)
* Merkur.de is part of the nationwide Ippen digital editorial network.
Category list picture: © dpa / Michael Kappeler