Angela Merkel, Europe’s “Guiding Light”

0 Posted by - December 4, 2012 - Career & Business, Economics, Foreign Affairs

 Angela Merkel, Europe’s Guiding LightThe political life of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Europe’s most influential leader and the oft-proclaimed world’s most powerful woman, is a tale of paradoxes, driven by her own enigmatic nature.

While angry protesters marching the streets of Athens, Lisbon and Madrid brandish posters of Merkel dressed in Nazi garb, the 58-year-old enjoys a level of domestic popularity unseen by any post-war leader before her.

The crisis-ravaged nations of the eurozone blame Merkel for imposing budgetary discipline they say is choking off desperately needed growth, yet few deny that she holds the key to any long-term solution.

And in Germany, Europe’s biggest economy, Merkel rose through the ranks of her conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU) despite being a ‘misfit’ in a party of mainly Roman Catholic family men from the wealthy southwest.

Merkel, a twice-married childless Protestant raised in communist East Germany, has become the unchallenged conservative leader of her generation and looks set to handily win a third term at next year’s election.

CONTINUED at the Khaleej Times.

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