The cover of this week's issue of the German weekly Der Spiegel shows a smiling Angela Merkel spliced into a photograph of Nazi officers standing by Athens' Parthenon during the German World War II occupation of Greece.
Along with the headline, "How Europeans see Germans — the German Supremacy," the controversial cover was published two days before the Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras' first official visit to Berlin Monday to meet the German chancellor.
The far-left Greek leader, who was elected two months ago, is expected to present a list of precise reforms that Greece would be ready to carry out. Tsipras has blamed Germany and its austerity policy for the poverty and mass unemployment in his country. On the other hand, Berlin, Greece's largest single creditor nation, insists more cuts and reforms are required from the new Greek government.
The controversial cover was also a reference to the emergence in recent weeks of the dormant issue of German World War II reparations to Greece. Der Spiegel also says the Greek Treasury had compiled a 194-page report on the amount of money the country should receive, which is said to include an 11 billion-euro compensation for the "Distomo massacre," in which 214 people were killed by Nazi soldiers.
Although relations between the two European countries are strained, Tsipras told the Greek daily Kathimerini that Monday's visit would be the opportunity to talk "without the pressure of any negotiation."
ABOUT THE SOURCE: Der Spiegel (The Mirror) is among the most highly respected weekly magazines in the world, known both for its investigative journalism and global coverage.