That’s Not Fair

Why couldn’t German tanks take part in the competition?

Oh, I forgot. They’re all broken.

The idea of green U.S. Army M1 Abrams tanks with big white stars on their sides, huge American flags flying on top, and art on the hull depicting a turtle wearing a World War II-era tanker uniform, running over a pile of cars sounds like something straight out of a 1980s arcade game. But its actually a real scene from the annual Strong Europe Tank Challenge at the service’s 7th Army Training Command’s Grafenwoehr Training Area in Germany.

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I Don’t Speak Your Body Language

Or, better yet, German of the day: Über den Tisch ziehen.

G7

That means “pull over the table,” as in to get pulled over the barrel or bamboozled.

Body Language 2

Recall back in 2015, almost three years ago to the day, when Merkel, with outstretched arms, stood before President Obama, seated on a bench at that year’s Group of 7 summit.

Sein Verhältnis zur deutschen Bundeskanzlerin beschrieb Donald Trump mit dem Vokabular des Preisrichters bei einem Schönheitswettbewerb: Auf einer Punkteskala von 1 bis 10 gebe er der Beziehung zu “Angela und Emmanuel und Justin” die Bestnote, sagte der US-Präsident am Samstag vor seiner Abreise vom G7-Gipfel in La Malbaie mit Blick auf Merkel und ihre französischen und kanadischen Amtskollegen Macron und Trudeau.

Remember This Guy?

Martin Schmidt? Or was it Meier? Müller? … Schlitz?

Schulz

Anyway, he’s back again or something. For a few seconds. Now that his fifteen minutes are up, I mean.

He and his comrades over at the SPD are mad as hell at US-Amerika‘s new Ambassador, Richard Grenell, because of, well, “perceived breaches of diplomatic etiquette” (how diplomatic).

He said in a recent Breitbart interview, for instance (Breitbart is a German news service, Breitbart meaning “wide beard” in our language), that he wanted to empower conservative forces throughout Europe. I know, right? And then he did this and then he said that and yada, yada, yada and now everyone on the left (and that’s a whole lot over here) is completely outraged because, well, it’s a slow news day/week/month so it’s time to call for somebody to fire his red, white and blue ass. If it wasn’t for outrage they wouldn’t have no rage at all.

“I think there is a groundswell of conservative policies that are taking hold because of the failed policies of the left.”

“Ich hoffe, dass der Kurz-Besuch zu einem Kurz-Aufenthalt von Herrn Grenell in seiner Funktion als Botschafter in Deutschland führt.”

Coming This Fall?

The Fall of the German Empire.

Empire

The third German empire is a different animal altogether. Repudiating both militarism and racist mysticism, it has been built slowly and painstakingly across three generations, in cooperation with other powers (including its old enemies the French), using a mix of democratic and bureaucratic means. Today Germany bestrides its Continent, but German power is wielded softly, indirectly, implicitly — and when the fist is required, it takes the form of fiscal ultimatums, not military bluster or racial irredentism.

But still the system is effectively imperial in many ways, with power brokers in Berlin and Brussels wielding not-exactly-democratic authority over a polyglot, multiethnic, multireligious sprawl of semi-sovereign nation-states. And thinking about the European Union this way, as a Germanic empire as well as a liberal-cosmopolitan project, is a helpful way of understanding how it might ultimately fall…

Sounds great. Stay tuned or something. Netflix, right?

German Of The Day: Klartext

That means straight talk.

And that’s the kind of talk Angela Merkel was talking today when she said at the German Catholic Congress in Munster: “If everybody does whatever he feels like doing then that is bad news for the world.”

Klartext

She was referring, of course, to her reckless, emotion-driven, unilateral and illegal decision to provide refuge to anybody and everybody coming from Syria or anywhere else (provided they don’t have any identification papers on them), this having led to the ongoing refugee crisis in Germany and the rest of Europe.

Oh, oops! Sorry. Actually she was referring to Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal. But, I dunno, same difference.

“Wenn jeder macht, worauf er Lust hat, ist das eine schlechte Nachricht für die Welt.”

Father’s Day Is Sexist In Germany, Too

Not only are mothers here reduced to cultural stereotypes whenever it is suggested that they might be interested in things like cookbooks, vacuum cleaners, sewing machines and irons, fathers in these parts are not treated any better.

Muttertag

The German Father’s Day stereotype (Father’s Day is today, incidentally) consists of fathers and other so-called “men” celebrating it by turning it into a drunken orgy of day-drinking debauchery in which mindless Herrenparties (gentlemen party groups) pull their ridiculously decorated Bollerwagen (handcarts) filled with booze and food but mostly booze through the countryside or greener urban landscape. It’s scandalous. To assume that all men are interested in that kind of nonsense, I mean.

I’d like to address this subject in a little more detail but I have to go help my neighbor load up our Bollerwagen. It’s getting on noon and we haven’t had a drink yet.

Lidl Germany has come under fire for suggesting people buy their mums cookbooks, vacuum cleaners, sewing machines and irons for Mother’s Day.

Germans Need To Become Better Integrated

In Germany. That makes sense. Sort of. Well, if you’re the head of Germany’s Federal Immigration and Integration Council it does.

Germans

I mean, think about it. They are already doing such a smash-up job integrating the millions of non-Germans out there that this phase of integration will soon be over with and then what are the folks who work over at Federal Immigration and Integration Council going to do? Get integrated back into the labor market (for real jobs)? Hardly.

And I have noticed, I must say, that more and more Germans just don’t really fit in here anymore. Worse still, many of these non-integrated Germans aren’t even open to the idea of letting themselves become properly integrated and even get downright hostile whenever you suggest that they do so. Not that I ever would, of course. I believe in cultural diversity. “Andere Länder, andere Sitten,” as the Germans say. Other countries, other manners. Live and let live, that’s my motto. Although I do wish that some of these non-integrated Germans would at least try to become more integrated in Germany society now and then. This parallel society nonsense ain’t cutting it, either.

“Viele Einheimische sind mit unserem politischen System unzufrieden oder finden ihren Platz in der deutschen Gesellschaft nicht.”

BREAKING NEWS: Germans Are More Negative Than Americans

When it comes to German-American relations, I mean. Like holy Scheiße! Who would have ever expected that?

Germans

And here I thought Germans were such positive, can-do people who  have always been so, you know, upbeat and cheerful about German-American relations. In the past, I mean. Right? This just doesn’t make any sense. It’s just not their nature. Somebody should double-check these numbers.

6 charts on how Germans and Americans view one another

1. Americans think U.S.-German relations are in good shape, but Germans disagree.

2. German attitudes toward the U.S. have turned sharply negative in the Trump era.

3. Merkel gets positive reviews from Americans, especially Democrats.

4. Many Germans see the U.S. as a top foreign policy partner; fewer Americans feel the same way about Germany.

5. Democrats are more likely than Republicans to see Germany as an important partner for foreign policy.

6. There are transatlantic differences about defense spending.

Only 11% of Germans expressed confidence in Trump to do the right thing in world affairs in 2017, down from 86% for Obama in 2016.

Karl Marx Traffic Lights?

Whose bright idea was that?

Marx

That photo is a bunch of bull. They’re only going to turn from red to red.

The home town of influential communist thinker Karl Marx is celebrating the 200th anniversary of his birth… with new pedestrian lights.

The philosopher and author of The Communist Manifesto was born in Trier in western Germany on 5 May 1818, and spent his first 17 years in the city.

Bei Rot musst du stehen, bei Grün kannst du gehen. Das wird sich auch mit der neuen Karl-Marx-Ampel nicht ändern. Auf der neuen Marx-Fußgängerampel gibt es sowohl einen roten, als auch einen grünen Karl Marx.