The ground is shaking beneath Chancellor Angela Merkel, with the far-right Alternative für Deutschland now in the Bundestag and the Social Democrats determined not to join a new grand coalition. Merkel now faces the thorny task of forming a government with the Greens and the Free Democrats as she starts to address the problems of a domestic economy grown complacent, and a Europe desperate for renewal.
- Joschka Fischer thinks that Merkel’s efforts at coalition-building may mean a dangerous period of policy paralysis.
- Daniela Schwarzer worries that any new coalition won’t be able to agree on a viable foreign policy, particularly concerning Europe.
- Harold James agrees, seeing the ghosts of Weimar stirring in the far right’s gains – and the Social Democrats’ retreat.