I found this ‘frightening’!
“Germany’s exceptionalism is obvious. Whereas electorates across the European Union have punished their governments for the Great Recession and the euro crisis, Germans reelected Chancellor Angela Merkel and displayed strong support for her party, the Christian Democratic Union (CDU), in the recent election. Indeed, as with postwar Germany’s first leader, Konrad Adenauer, there are jokes about Merkel being Chancellor for life (Germany has no term limits).
Elsewhere, populist anti-European parties of the right have been gaining ground with campaigns directed against immigrants and minorities, especially Muslims. This has fueled concern that the populist bloc will be the largest in the European Parliament after next year’s EU-wide election.
Germany, by contrast, has no anti-European party with any serious support. Even the newly formed Alternative for Germany – which did unexpectedly well in the recent election, finishing just short of the 5% threshold needed to enter the Bundestag – insists that its anti-euro agenda is not anti-Europe. They want to end the common currency, because, in their view, it is undermining the European ideal.
Against this background, Germany’s neighbors have been showing their love – or at least admiration. At the end of 2011, Polish Foreign Minister Radosław Sikorski called upon Germany to take a stronger leadership role in Europe. This year, confronted with a revival of nationalist sentiment, former Polish President Lech Wałęsa – the leader of the anti-communist Solidarity movement – suggested that his country should enter into political union with Germany.
Likewise, as France slides into a governance crisis and its leaders’ credibility rapidly erodes, the leading French intellectual Alain Minc has published Vive l’Allemagne (“Long Live Germany”), in which he argues that Germany is Europe’s healthiest and most democratic country.
In Italy, the bourgeoisie of Milan and Rome have made a point of spending winter days dressed in characteristically German Loden overcoats. When Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben recently appealed for a Latin empire to assert itself against Germany, his call was widely rejected, with several of his contemporaries asserting that, on the contrary, Germany should serve as a model for Italy as it seeks to overcome its current malaise.
Even in the habitually Euro-skeptical United Kingdom, Prime Minister David Cameron has sought to boost his international credibility by highlighting his close ties with Merkel, rather than by emphasizing the UK’s “special relationship” with the United States. Revealingly, the writer Miranda Seymour’s recently published book Noble Endeavours reminds Britain of the centuries-old love affair between Germany and England. Maybe the royal family will go back to styling itself the House of Hanover?”
Hope it doesn´t end with Germany ‘overseeing’ a bunch of “Vichy governments”.