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A Leftwing Alternative For Germany After Berlin Vote?

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Die Tageszeitung , Sept. 19

Another election, another humbling defeat for German Chancellor Angela Merkel. In a Berlin state vote, Merkel's CDU party polled 17.6% — its lowest showing since 1990, figures from public broadcaster ARD showed on Monday. It's the second poll drubbing as CDU got crushed just two weeks before in an eastern German state election.

The anti-immigration Alternative für Deutschland (AfD), or the Alternative for Germany, a far-right upstart, snatched 14.2% of the vote in Berlin, riding a backlash against Merkel's open-door policy for refugees. Although Merkel's conservatives came in second place, its lower numbers mean the end of their "grand coalition" with the Social Democrats SPD , which topped the election with 21.6% of the vote. SPD's celebrations would be muted, however, as it's down almost 7 percentage points from the last election.

Left-leaning Die Tageszeitung newspaper sees CDU's descent as an opportunity for a different sort of "alternative for Germany," namely a grand coalition of the left, rather than the right-wing alternative AfD proposes. As an editorial in today's newspaper explains, the center-left SPD and Green party are often reluctant to work with far-left Die Linke party. They've previously preferred to team up with center-right CDU, a move the paper describes as "political nonsense."

But with both Greens and Die Linke each taking a respectable chunk of the vote — each polled about 15% — a new kind of coalition is possible, the Die Tageszeitung notes. "We could almost thank the AfD for that," the paper says, arguing that a grand coalition of the left would show that a "real alternative" in Germany is possible with general elections just a year away.

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Violence Against Women, The Patriarchy And Responsibility Of The Good Men Too

The femicide of Giulia Cecchettin has shaken Italy, and beyond. Argentine journalist Ignacio Pereyra looks at what lies behind femicides and why all men must take more responsibility.

A protester's sign referring to the alleged killer reads: Filippo isn't a monster, he's the healthy son of the patriarchy

Matteo Nardone/Pacific Press via ZUMA Press
Ignacio Pereyra

Updated Dec. 3, 2023 at 10:40 p.m.


ATHENS — Are you going to write about what happened in Italy?, Irene, my partner, asks me. I have no idea what she's talking about. She tells me: a case of femicide has shaken the country and has been causing a stir for two weeks.

As if the fact in itself were not enough, I ask what is different about this murder compared to the other 105 women murdered this year in Italy (or those that happen every day around the world).

For the latest news & views from every corner of the world, Worldcrunch Today is the only truly international newsletter. Sign up here .

We are talking about a country where the expression "fai l'uomo" (be a man) abounds, with a society so prone to drama and tragedy and so fond of crime stories as few others, where the expression "crime of passion" is still mistakenly overused.

In this context, the sister of the victim reacted in an unexpected way for a country where femicide is not a crime recognized in the penal code, contrary to what happens, for example, in almost all of Latin America.

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