Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Putting a Polite Face on It

Der Speigel predicts a thaw in German-American relations when the Schröder era ends.

His replacement is almost sure to be Angela Merkel -- the likely candidate from the opposition Christian Democrats (CDU). And, when it comes to Bush, she has done everything she can to distance herself from Schroeder's antagonistic stance and present herself as a great friend of the United States. A new, and more amicable trans-Atlantic era between Germany and the US may be on the horizon.

"Trans-Atlantic relations would be very much more relaxed" under Merkel, says Peter Fischer-Bollin, a trans-Atlantic expert with the pro-CDU Konrad Adenauer Stiftung in Berlin. "On the one hand because of specific positions ... and on the other hand, the tone of discussions that are currently taking place would be much milder. The relationship of trust would improve .... I think perhaps that the people in the CDU are much more pro-trans-Atlantic than those in the current government."

That's eminently predictable. But check it out, and check out the photo they picked to illustrate it, in the upper left corner of the story. Is that not the most understated, and euphemistic, caption you've ever seen?