When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

Already a subscriber? Log in .

You've reached your limit of one free article.

Get unlimited access to Worldcrunch

You can cancel anytime .


Exclusive International news coverage

Ad-free experience NEW

Weekly digital Magazine NEW

9 daily & weekly Newsletters

Access to Worldcrunch archives

Free trial

30-days free access, then $2.90
per month.

Annual Access BEST VALUE

$19.90 per year, save $14.90 compared to monthly billing.save $14.90.

Subscribe to Worldcrunch

With Merkel Isolated, Europe Must Share Burden And Blame

The German Chancellor has made many mistakes: She has isolated Germany, inside Europe. But it is hardly her fault alone in a continent unable to see the stakes at hand.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin on March 16
German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin on March 16
Sascha Lehnartz

BERLIN — German Chancellor Angela Merkel has earned a reputation for approaching politics with the mind of the physics student she originally was. She has a way of considering problems in reverse, and generally makes sure everyone in the classroom has put on protective glasses before activating the Bunsen burner. Always minimize the risk of injury.

What's interesting about this analogy is that it has endured, even if she has shown over time to occasionally have some truly ill-considered ideas. But it has only been within the context of the migrant crisis that doubts about the Chancellor's otherwise infallible logic have finally emerged.

In this case, Merkel has now begun to face the problem from the beginning, localizing the potential solution by seeing where the refugees are coming from — meaning: Syria, but also through Turkey.

She missed just one minor detail: 27 other Europeans, plus at least one Bavarian, don't have her patience to wait for the outcome of this bold experiment.

Power of persistence

She has also overestimated the readiness of Germany's neighbors to bow to the categorical imperative of acceptance that has been articulated in Berlin.

The result of this misjudgment is that Merkel finds herself alarmingly isolated in Europe, whose political destiny now also depends on the whims of a part-time autocrat in Ankara.

Nevertheless, the Chancellor is right when she points out in her latest government announcement that it would be shameful for Europe, if 28 member states with 500 million inhabitants are not capable of finding a common solution to a crisis that concerns all of them.

Perhaps the German leader's persistence is not ultimately constructive. But as for the will missing from other so-called "major" European powers to share the burden — that cannot be blamed on Angela Merkel's physics after all.

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.


The Colonial Spirit And "Soft Racism" Of White Savior Syndrome

Tracing back to Christian colonialism, which was supposed to somehow "civilize" and save the souls of native people, White Savior Syndrome lives on in modern times: from Mother Teresa to Princess Diana and the current First Lady of Colombia, Verónica Alcocer.

photo of a child patient holding hand of an adult

Good intentions are part of the formula

Ton Koene / Vwpics/ZUMA
Sher Herrera


CARTAGENA — The White Savior Syndrome is a social practice that exploits or economically, politically, symbolically takes advantage of individuals or communities they've racialized, perceiving them as in need of being saved and thus forever indebted and grateful to the white savior.

Although this racist phenomenon has gained more visibility and sparked public debate with the rise of social media, it is actually as old as European colonization itself. It's important to remember that one of Europe's main justifications for subjugating, pillaging and enslaving African and American territories was to bring "civilization and save their souls" through "missions."

Even today, many white supremacists hold onto these ideas. In other words, they believe that we still owe them something.

This white savior phenomenon is a legacy of Christian colonialism, and among its notable figures, we can highlight Saint Peter Claver, known as "the slave of the slaves," Bartolomé de Las Casas, Mother Teresa of Calcutta, Princess Diana herself, and even the First Lady of Colombia, Verónica Alcocer.

Keep reading...Show less

The latest