Picture of the day
Around 2,600 Christmas markets opened this week across Germany in the usual flurry of sparkly ornaments, warm lights and the aroma of mulled wine and searing sausage. New to the mix, however, is extra police security, added after a terrorist drove a truck through a Berlin Christmas market last year, leaving 12 dead. Source:
Graph of the day
Facebook’s mission statement is “bringing the world closer together,” but the German government tends to think of social media as tearing it apart through its dissemination of hate speech and fake news. This is why it comes as little surprise to see that Germans are among the lower echelons of global social network users, spending less time on sites than the US, Russia or the Philippines.
Person of the day
Agriculture Minister Christian Schmidt is Germany’s bête noire, after voting "Yes" to allow the use of Monsanto's controversial weed killer glyphosate for another five years in Europe, despite Angela Merkel's CDU and SPD wanting to abstain. Mr. Schmidt, a member of the Bavarian sister party of the CDU single-handedly strained coalition talks with this EU vote. The Social Democrats, which were considering joining with the conservatives again in a "grand coalition," are livid. Source:
Quote of the day
After a knife attack nearly ended his life earlier this week, Andreas Hollstein, mayor of the German town Altena, is calling for an amendment to Germany's criminal code to include politically-motivated violence against lawmakers. Like Mr. Hollstein, a candidate for mayor in Cologne also suffered a knife attack by a right-wing extremist who was angered at her pro-refugee stance in 2015. Henriette Reker survived and went on to win the election.