The Green party was at first an iconoclastic bunch, leftish, even radical. Its deputies, often women, showed up in the Bundestag knitting or even wearing woolen sweaters, shocking the conservatives. But its radicals grew older; many got rewarding professional jobs; its fundamentalist wing (“fundis“) lost out to the pragmatic “realos“ (realists). The Green retreat has […]
Author Archive | Victor Grossman
Germany, once viewed as an exaggerated model of exactitude and discipline, is currently in a muddle.
Surprise, surprise! Things worked out quite differently than expected at the congress of the LINKE, the left-wing party.
The U.S.-American night-mare, tight-lipped and pouting, was finally forced to gallop off to its luxurious stable in Florida. Almost every European joined in “Hurrah!” cheers as it watched him go!
The survival of polar bears, we know, is sadly threatened. The survival of a more colorful bear species seems assured. HARIBO (an acronym of HAns RIegel BOnn), which makes those little “gold bears” sweets, was founded in a laundry room in 1920.
Ding-dong, the wicked witch is dead! A wicked but very male Witch of the East seemed to be crushed under a houseful of angry voters, though this house, unlike Dorothy’s in The Wizard of Oz, was definitely not from Kansas!
This Saturday many Germans, party leaders and media pundits above all, will recall October 3, 1990, when their dreams of a unified Germany became reality.
Ups and downs in Germany are less dramatic than in Minsk or the USA, now suffering under the corona pandemic, terrifying forest fires and worrisome election-fever. But Germany, too, could veer left or right.
“Mirror, mirror on the wall…” Nearly every German knows the story of Snow White. Currently, the question of who is “fairest of them all” faces nearly every German political party or, in modern terms, who can attract more votes in next year’s election.
On Saturday, crowds came to Berlin from all over Germany for a huge mass parade, estimated at 17,000 to 20,000. The big crowd in Berlin, after picking up steam for weeks with smaller rallies, insisted that the whole corona virus pandemic had ended or maybe hadn’t really existed at all!
Those still following international relations may have noticed an unusual tearing sound growing louder. Recent developments, not conclusive or complete and yet undeniable, suggest the painful ripping apart of that eternal brotherhood between the German Federal Republic and its great patron, provider and protector, the USA.
While prices and recipes for asparagus, dates and restrictions for re-opening dominated the media and many conversations, a far more significant matter found little attention. Ever since 1955 an estimated twenty American nuclear bombs have been stored underground at the U.S. Air Force base in Büchel in Rhineland. A German politician recently proposed spending $3 […]
With COVID-19 figures flattening downward, Germany is limping back to some kind of normalcy. Auto and bike shops, book dealers, barbers and most shops less than 800 m2 can now re-open (with customers 5 ft apart). Bigger shops and department stores are squabbling: “Why not us?”
Berlin, like many of your hometowns, is a ghost city. Except for those offering groceries, medicines or medical care, everything is shut tight. Luckily, no-one here has to stay inside, we can stroll around outside but, aside from families, we may not “assemble” in groups of more than two (if any cops are around).
The right-wing menace, its violence and threat of a genuine fascist take-over, is far from ceasing with the happy ending of a Grimm fairy-tale. Thuringia is where the Nazis gained their first foothold in 1930 and the AfD leader here today, Bjorn Hoecke, is the most vicious and dangerous man in Germany.
While millions this week stared at Iowa and Washington with worried amazement, confusion or anger, Germany, too, had its own messy confusion–which turned into a frightening alarm signal!
Troop movements today promise anything but peace. Every two years military maneuvers encircle Russian borders; every nine months a new brigade of 4500 U.S. soldiers was flown over to “gain experience”. This year it will be a division of 20,000, joined by soldiers from 18 countries, 37,000 in all.
No-one on Berlin’s main eastbound traffic artery could miss one of the two murals, five stories high, 2745 square feet in area, in shiny bright, red, green, yellow and blue colors up to the gabled rooftop of an older, isolated apartment building.
Looking out my window at the wide Karl Marx Allee boulevard below, I have seen many a big May Day parade march by in the old GDR days, and many a passing bicycle race or Marathon. Recently, for the first time, I saw a slow, endless column of green or yellow tractors.
A stern, history-based evaluation awakens doubts that, despite the paeans in the world media, the fall of the Berlin Wall was not purely a peaceful revolution, a choice of freedom by the masses, another successful victory for freedom and justice as in past centuries.