Berlin – fame Angela Merkel When it was at its peak A year ago he left the head of the German government After remaining 16 posts. But His image suffered rapid erosion due to the war in Ukraine and his endorsement of Vladimir Putin’s Russia.
Since leaving the presidency on December 8, 2021, 68-year-old Merkel has stayed out of the spotlight. Long regarded as the world’s most powerful woman, she now makes her memories and enjoys TV serials from time to time.
While he was at the helm of Europe’s largest economy, he enjoyed wide support and was known as an ardent supporter of Western liberal values.
The attack on Ukraine was launched by the Russian president on February 24. His aura broke and only 23% of Germans want him back in powerAccording to a CV Institute survey from late November.
“A year later, the world is burning, Russia has invaded Ukraine, gas and gasoline prices are through the roof, and Germany is dreading winter.”, explains Der Spiegel journalist Alexander Ossang, an old confidant of Merkel.
“Angela Merkel has gone from model to criminal, from crisis manager to crisis instigator“, Collaboration.
The Russian embassy is located near the offices provided to the former foreign minister. Since the invasion of Ukraine began, Berliners regularly leave banners and flowers at the gates of the diplomatic mission.
The first woman to reach the pinnacle of power in Germany has been accused, in this new context, of Accommodating the Russian president and deepening the country’s dependence on hydrocarbons from Moscow.
One of the decisions he is accused of is supporting the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project, even after Russia annexed the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea in 2014.
Faced with criticism, Merkel broke her silence and had to justify herself in several interviews with trusted journalists.
To Hedwig Richter, Professor of Modern History at the Bundeswehr University of Munich, Merkel’s loss of face is “exceptional” and embodies the political misjudgment of an entire generation.
He analyzes that governments led by Merkel “thought it was realistic to put values like human rights and climate protection behind. But now reality is hitting them.”
President of Ukraine Volodymyr ZelenskyMerkel is largely responsible for NATO’s rejection of Ukraine’s candidacy in 2008.
Zelensky invited the former foreign minister to Bucha, where Russian forces are accused of massacres and atrocities in April. SHe assured that his aim was for Merkel to see “what the policy of concessions to Russia has led to”.
The Energy crisis It was fueled by an expansion of sanctions and retaliation after the start of the war and further soured anti-Merkel sentiment.
In public debate, “Merkel is involved in this war and certainly guilty of gas shortages”Nico Fried has covered German government operations during Merkel’s four terms for Stern magazine.
“The question is what remains of Merkel after 16 years, her historical portrait faded before it was built,” he commented.
According to Richter, Merkel’s achievements include her refugee policy, which allowed entry. More than a million asylum seekers since the crackdown on the Arab Springs At the beginning of the last decade.
But Merkel made two serious miscalculations, he analyzes.
one side, “The Impotence of the Republic [alemana] to defend himself”. The researcher points to the lack of investment in defense, which indicates dependence on the United States.
On the other hand, the fact of neglecting the environmental issue is “closely connected to Russia’s dependence on fossil fuels.”
“Both of these issues have been woefully neglected by the Merkel governments”, he insists.
In her recent interviews, Merkel has defended her legacy. He said he used the Nord Stream gas pipeline as a bargaining chip to ensure Putin respected the 2015 Minsk accords that sought to end fighting in eastern Ukraine.
Merkel added that she had promised US President Joe Biden last year to boycott the gas pipeline deal if Russia invaded Ukraine.
Osang, a journalist for Der Spiegel, underlines the irony that “it’s precisely Putin.” [Merkel] He knows very well who has tarnished his reputation with all his tricks, lies, and boasting.
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