After a state election in Germany, the Social Democrats (SPD) lost—again; the Christian Democrats (CDU) won—again; and a strong showing by the liberal FDP has created a chance to rebuild a coalition government with the CDU in Düsseldorf…and maybe later this year in Berlin. Not much of this scenario was expected as recently as four …Read More

“Clear horizon, strong heart,” or, as they say in Schleswig-Holstein, “Klaar Kimming, Rüm Haart.” The slogan frequently seen on flags flying over the North Sea islands might as well be flying over the Kanzleramt after the elections in Schleswig-Holstein on May 7. Chancellor Merkel’s party picked up both support and a new champion who could be …Read More

In a widely-read interview with the German daily tabloid Bild just days before his inauguration, Donald Trump called the British decision to leave the EU “smart,” and predicted that other member states would follow suit.[1] The spectacle of Europe’s strongest ally, the United States, calling into question the value of the EU—the model of the …Read More

Panel Discussion at the German Historical Institute. Speakers: Kathleen Canning (University of Michigan), Rüdiger Graf (Center for Contemporary History Potsdam), Donna Harsch (Carnegie Mellon University), and Dirk Schumann (University of Göttingen), and moderated by David Clay Large (University of San Francisco/University of California, Berkeley) This panel will bring together Weimar historians to address the history …Read More

It was an awkward date.  Both recognized they had to get to know each other, but neither one was particularly keen to do so.  Nevertheless, they went through the motions with a sense of obligation that was painfully obvious to everyone. Trump and Merkel are not going to be friends, and they may not ever …Read More

The American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr once stated that the essence of statecraft is locating the point of concurrence between the parochial and the general interest, between the national and international common good.[1] Niebuhr emphasizes that realism implies an obligation to see the world as it actually is, not as we might like it to be. He warned that hubris can blind realism, finding expression in outsized confidence in both the power as well as the values of a country as being universal. Any country is susceptible to such temptations.

The Munich Security Conference has had many memorable milestones over the last half century; I have been privileged to experience several. The famous “I am not convinced” exchange between Joschka Fischer and Donald Rumsfeld in 2003; the gauntlet directed at the U.S. by Vladimir Putin in 2007; Joachim Gauck’s challenge to Germany for it to rethink …Read More

Germany has emerged as the EU’s central economic and political power in today’s crisis-ridden Europe. The U.K., after the Brexit vote, has probably dropped out of global crisis management for quite a while and the United States, under President Barack Obama, already significantly retrenched from global commitments. Thus the election of Donald Trump marks a …Read More

A Collection from This Week’s News on Important Issues for German-American Relations Business and Economics Germany Should Not Fear Trump (Handelsblatt Global) Should German carmakers be alarmed? (DW) Bank of England Governor: Bank will protect economic growth (U.S.News) IMF boosts growth forecast for US, cites Trump impact (Southern Business Journal) U.S. Ambassadors in Asia make …Read More

The transatlantic community is understandably concerned about the shocking election of Donald J. Trump as the next U.S. president. It is an outcome that no one saw coming—not even experts in the United States. Now, we must wait to see if his governance style matches the bombastic style in which he campaigned. In the meantime, …Read More

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