At Issue

The French Elections and the Franco-German Equation

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In advance of the French Presidential elections, Executive Director Jack Janes examines the changing parameters of Franco-German relations in light of the challenges both countries currently face. If Francois Hollande becomes the new President, any resulting changes in the continuity of one the most important bi-national relationships in Europe will be felt beyond the borders of Germany and France.

Saarland’s Signals

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In this At Issue, Executive Director Jack Janes examines the results of the state election in Saarland and their potential signals for both the subsequent state elections to follow during 2012, as well as the national election in 2013.

Can Joachim Gauck Make Germany Likable?

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Germany is at a crossroads: become the Continent’s leader or be seen as the neighborhood bully. In a stroke of national fortune, it is about to install, as its next president, a man known more for his integrity and moral leadership than for his political acumen, a man who can help make sure his country follows the first course.

Afghanistan Afterward

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In this At Issue, Executive Director Jack Janes looks at the proposed troop withdraw date for Afghanistan in the wake of the civilian killings by a U.S. soldier over the past weekend. Following over a decade of conflict in Afghanistan, coalition forces now seem increasingly eager to transfer responsibility to the Afghan people. However, it has become very clear that a number of challenges remain for the future stability of Afghanistan, especially once coalition forces do leave.

Variations on Democracy

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In this At Issue, Executive Director Jack Janes examines the election – whether at local, regional, or federal levels – as a cornerstone of a successful modern day democracy.

Managing Majorities

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In this weeks At issue, Executive Director Jack Janes looks at Chancellor Merkel’s struggle to sustain political support for the increasingly complicated agenda of the euro zone, as well as the interests and actors shaping the battle lines.

The End of One Presidency – the Beginning of a New President: Joachim Gauck

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In this At Issue, Executive Director Jack Janes reacts to the unexpected resignation of German President Christian Wulff, brought about by the decision to investigate his dealings while serving as Minister President of Lower Saxony. While his exit from office appears to have little effect on Chancellor Merkel’s current approval ratings, it has highlighted a bigger issue in Germany – namely the growing mistrust between politicians and the German population. With Joachim Gauck emerging as the favorite to become the next President, he must focus immediately on rebuilding the bridge between the governed and the governing.

Measuring Movement in Munich

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In this week’s At Issue, Executive Director Jack Janes writes from this year’s annual Munich Security Conference (MSC). A benchmark for the defense discussions of the transatlantic community for almost fifty years, the conference has had to continually incorporate new global threats and concerns in its agenda. With the centers of global power continuing to shift away from Cold War era alignments, the challenges for the US and Europe require increased dialogue with more partners and players around the globe.

Iran: Through the Looking Glass

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As tensions rise over Iran’s nuclear ambitions, the European Union has ratcheted up its pressure on Iran with an oil embargo. Tehran is now threatening with an embargo of its own, while the United States leaves its threat of military action on the table and Israel worries about the clock running out of time to stop Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. Is 2012 the year where war becomes inevtiable? And what can Germany or the EU do to prevent it?

The President’s Pitch

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Elected government leaders at any level of government are always expected to give speeches; most enjoy the chance to be on stage. With their speeches, national leaders are given roles as agenda-setters as well as policymakers. In Germany and in other European parliamentary systems, the chancellor, prime minister, or president carries the… Read more >