Sunday 4 December 2016

German engineering at its best

Published 06/09/2015 | 02:30

German Chancellor Angela Merkel
German Chancellor Angela Merkel

Sudden redemption after years and years of the rest of the world taking vague pleasure in feeling morally superior to you, is probably something the Germans have a very long word for. But right now they have a short word for it: Merkel, the angel of Germany.

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This tough old bird from East Germany has potentially done in one week what her whole nation couldn't do in 70 years. Germans themselves can barely speak of what their nation did back then, never mind atone or be allowed to forget it. And in one great act of humanity, Merkel has possibly done it. She felt the hand of history on her, and felt the opportunity to finally put things right.

And she did. She opened the doors and, in the process, reversed the most firmly etched images of the 20th century. Poor bedraggled people getting on trains with their few meagre belongings, believing they were going to a better place. And this time they really were. They were going into the welcoming arms of Frau Merkel.

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