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World Affairs Council Hilton Head

The Chancellor – The Remarkable Odyssey of Angela Merkel

19 Aug 2022 3:28 PM | Anonymous

The WACHH Book Club discussed The Chancellor – The Remarkable Odyssey of Angela Merkel by Kati Marton.   There was lively debate and here are their key takeaways from the book:

  • It was refreshing to read about a leader who is clearly value-driven, authentic, humble, accountable, scandal-free, effective user of soft-power, extremely smart, and concerned about the well-being of people, climate, and democracy.  She takes a moral approach to solving problems.
  • Merkel is a great contrast to “ignorance and bluster” that has become so pervasive in politics.
  • She was the perfect leader for the period she was Chancellor of Germany – she earned the trust of her people and the respect of even the most difficult world leaders.

Three questions were raised at the end of the discussion:

  • How as a scientist did, she come to the decision to move her country away from nuclear energy, and hasn’t that decision made Germany’s current energy situation much worse?  This is a question participants would love to ask Merkel and wish the author had covered in more depth.
  • If Merkel was still Chancellor of Germany, would Putin have again invaded Ukraine? Views of the group were mixed – some said “yes" and some said “no."
  • If Merkel was in the United States, could she, or a leader like her, ever be elected President?  The consensus was “probably not” because American politics has a bias against such high intellect and steadiness.

Would they recommend this book to others- Absolutely

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