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.
Tag Archives | Berlin Bulletin
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.
“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.
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.
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!
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.
Germany is really riding a rollercoaster these days, but this is no amusement park; there’s lots of suspense but rarely joy – and quite a few politicians are very unwell! Not only politicians!
The main impeachment thrust aims at minor events in the Ukraine. The whole approach ignores, indeed covers over the fact, that the whole U.S. policy of violently turning the Ukraine into a U.S.-dominated satrapy and advanced base was achieved by a Democratic administration.
Even thirty years have not accustomed all ex-GDR citizens to seeing youngsters in the streets with their ragged dogs and paper cups for charitable donations, concert violinists begging money with Mozart in cold subway stations or, on icy nights, homeless huddled figures in sleeping bags on the stations’ concrete floors.
Clearly, the ingredients of anti-Trump cooking create a very mixed batter. Some spoonfuls may even contain a “Save Biden as candidate” flavor, outweighing the truly weighty reasons for baking a completely new kind of cake.
The impeachment drive is quickly gathering steam, and who can have any sympathy for that man in the Oval Office? But I wonder if some enthusiasts may not be digging deeply enough.
The months ahead will show how many degree traces of the revolutionary spirit—exemplified by two recent events in Berlin—will somehow find their way into the Berlin and German political scenes.
In Saxon and Brandenburg, the leading parties held their lead and headed off the threat by the AfD. But in both states they were painfully weakened.
The three states in Eastern Germany now facing elections (two of them on Sunday) will be forced to decide on coalitions; no party will be strong enough to rule alone, most likely not even in two-party tandems.
Before the Berlin Wall was torn down we all made sarcastic jokes about its official designation by East German (GDR) party leaders as “anti-fascist protective barrier”. But hearing racist ranting by AfD leaders now hoping for victories and seeing gangs of marching thugs with barely–paraphrased Nazi slogans we must wonder if perhaps that scorned terminology […]