Angela merkel

Germany's Top Crisis Manager

APP Bismarck quer (2) cover checl surce
The iron chancellor?
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    How well Europe deals with one of the biggest mass movements of refugees, migrants and asylum-seekers in generations will rest in large part on the performance of Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany.

  • Facts

    Facts

    • Angela Merkel has been chancellor of Germany since 2005 and leader of the center-right Christian Democratic Union party since 2000, the first woman to hold either office.
    • She was born in Hamburg in West Germany but her family moved to East Germany and she grew up in a rural area about 50 miles north of the city then named East Berlin.
    • The current flood of would-be immigrants to Germany and other parts of Europe is triggering degrees of friction throughout the continent.
  • Audio

    Audio

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What’s most striking is what’s missing within Germany’s federal chancellery in Berlin: noise, activity, a sense of urgency. The building’s upper floors are blocked from the sounds of the streets below, where traffic buzzes and demonstrators chant. Only the occasional sound of a food trolley rolling across quiet hallways offers a hint of activity, suggesting another crisis meeting has happened. The feeling is surreal, as if the offices were the quiet eye of a storm.

In the middle of this zone is Chancellor Angela Merkel, who seems to govern without fear of what the storm will entail. Once again, she is guiding Germany through a period of intense stress and enormous challenges.

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