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Germany

Southern Germany: A Slice Of Europe Where Debt And Unemployment Are Worlds Away

Around Germany’s Eichstätt region, unemployment hovers just above 1%, with industry booming despite the euro debt crisis. Across southern Germany, the overall economy has largely recovered, especially as the auto sector is rebounding. A good sign for the

Shoppers in Munich, Germany
Shoppers in Munich, Germany
Uwe Ritzer

INGOLSTADT -- A local can-do attitude may have something to do with it, though the secret to this southern German city's success also lies with one large company: Audi. The car company, which calls this Bavarian city home, has been thriving for years, with exports particularly strong. And that resonates in the surrounding area.

It's less than 30 km from Ingolstadt to Eichstätt and thousands who live in the latter work at Audi. But that doesn't entirely explain why, for many months, the lowest jobless rate in all of Germany is recorded here. In October it was 1.1%, a figure that amazes even job market experts.

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Ideas

Ukraine Has Exposed The Bankruptcy Of Germany's "Never Again" Pacifism

A group of pro-peace German intellectuals published a letter asking the country not to deliver heavy weapons to Ukraine, but they're missing the point completely. Germany needs to reinvent itself in order to face today's challenges — and threats.

The Bundestag, or German federal government, meets at the Reichstag building in Berlin.

Sascha Lehnartz

-OpEd-

BERLIN — When even the brightest minds — some of whom have shaped the intellectual life of this republic for decades — suddenly seem at a loss, it can mean one of two things. Either the clever minds are not as clever as we were always led to believe. Or the times have changed so brutally that old pieces of wisdom are suddenly no longer valid.

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If you don't want to give up your childhood faith in the Federal Republic of Germany quite yet, you can settle on the second option.

Alexander Kluge, one of Germany's most versatile artists, founded a television production company, proving that there can even be television for intellectuals. Journalist and prominent feminist Alice Schwarzer has done more for the liberation of women in this country than anyone else. Yet Schwarzer and Kluge, along with another two dozen intellectuals, have written an open letter that basically recommends Ukraine to submit to Vladimir Putin for the sake of the authors' peace of mind.

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