Articles by John Gizzi
With days to go before the balloting in the parliamentary elections, the issue of immigration dominates political debate. In 2015, as Germany’s Merkel was admitting refugees from Syria, whose ranks would reach one million, Austria received 90,000 asylum requests. In … Continue reading
Stunning Surprise Looms in German Election: Nationalist Alternative for Germany Party (AfD) Headed for Big Finish
A just-completed “Deutschland Trend” poll by ARD (German Radio) showed the CDU-CSU leading the SPD in seats for the Bundestag by a striking margin of 37% to 21%. If accurate, this means that the SPD – considered one of the … Continue reading
To reach that goal will require some measure of achievement by Macron in the early days of his presidency and for Schulz to emerge as chancellor after a nip-and-tuck race with incumbent Angela Merkel. Then Europe and the world will … Continue reading
Should Macron stumble badly in office, then Le Pen in 2022 would be well-positioned at the natural opponent to Macron in her third bid for the presidency. By then, depending on the economic conditions in France and Europe her promises … Continue reading
Novels based on U.S. politics have, in the last half-century or so, resonated with American readers. Advise and Consent, Allen Drury’s Pulitzer Prize-winning magnum opus about a Senate confirmation battle over a controversial nominee for Secretary of State, holds up … Continue reading
In the late 1970s, conservatives agreed that all but one of the major Western democracies had a right-of-center leader: the U.S. had Reagan, the U.K. Thatcher, and West Germany (before it was unified with the East) Franz-Josef Strauss of Bavaria, … Continue reading
The Republicans, in near-final returns from the party’s first-ever primary, dark-horse candidate and former Prime Minister Francois Fillon, 62, topped an eight-candidate field with 46 percent of the vote. The resume of Felon, of course, is like those of most … Continue reading
>A just-completed poll by the Oesterreich newspaper among likely voters nationwide showed that if parliamentary elections were called, Hofer’s Freedom Party would emerge triumphant with 35 percent of the vote, followed by the two parties that now govern Austria in a “grand coalition:” the Social Democrats at 26 percent and the People’s (conservative) Party at 19 percent. Continue reading
As Merkel steadfastly insists she will not limit the number of refugees entering Germany this year, the AfD grows in strength and numbers. How it fares at the polls next year will surely be a defining chapter in the saga of reunified Germany. Continue reading
While the Donald declared they would be “friends for life,” Farage stopped short of actually endorsing Trump, saying it was not proper for a British citizen to tell American voters what to do—a not-so-subtle slap at President Obama for urging British voters to support “Remain” in the Brexit referendum. Continue reading
With nearly 1 million refugees admitted to Germany last year alone and 220,000 asylum-seekers arriving since January 1 (according to Deutsche Welle News), the AfD is almost certain to be a major player in the 2017 national elections. Continue reading
“Brexit is Brexit,” declared May in spelling out her position to execute the will of the voters in wanting to leave the European Union. Certainly her tapping of Johnson, Fox, Davis and several others are strong signs she means it and will act accordingly. But whether May goes on to become another Margaret Thatcher is a saga that is yet to be written. Continue reading
Some Republicans are not unhappy to see them go. As Tom Pauken, former Republican State chairman of Texas, a backer of the non-interventionist view of the GOP, put it, “Let them go back to the party from whence they came.” Continue reading
“The way in which party platforms are written is very, very ambiguous. I respect Pat Buchanan’s position, but the world is changing. Trotsky once said, ‘you may not like war, but war likes you.’ It is a very difficult and dangerous world and no platform today can determine what a President will face in the future and how he must respond.” – Herb London, president of the London Center for Policy Research Continue reading
From “Hitler’s Grandson” To “Austrian Trump”— “Populist-Nationalism” Now Poised For Biggest Triumph in Austria
Wodak attributes Hofer’s never-anticipated success in the first round of presidential voting to the 90,000 migrants who have been seeking asylum in Austria since last summer. What the Freedom Party has long derided as their country’s “welcoming culture” has led to its current immigration crisis and its slow rise in unemployment, Hofer supporters charge. Hofer’s slogan – “Putting Austria First” — clearly resonated with voters. And Hofer—an engineer, 41 years old, and a father of four — is less Jorg Haider than he is Donald Trump. Continue reading
In many ways, the “AfD phenomenon” is increasingly likened to that of the “Trump Phenomenon” in the United States. Lacking a charismatic leader in the mold of Donald Trump, the AfD has nonetheless electrified voters with its hard-line on immigration and its persona as the movement opposed to the political “establishment.” According to Martin Klingst of Die Zeit, “The United Nations Human Rights Council says that there are already about 200,000 refugees waiting in Libya to cross the Mediterranean to Italy again and that more and more refugees will choose this dangerous route once the Balkan route is closed.” Continue reading
More than three decades after he became the first-ever Socialist president under France’s Fifth Republic and nearly two decades after his death, Francois Mitterrand still fascinates—indeed, captivates—the French as well as politicians and political pundits worldwide.
As the third-largest democracy in the world and home to the world’s largest Muslim population, Indonesia presents a fascinating and very significant political scenario. The Financial Times recently noted, “Indonesia is often singled out by Western leaders such as President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron as an example that Islam, democracy, and economic development can flourish together.”
Both the French National Front and the UK Independence Party were big winners with 26% (25 seats) and 29% (24 seats) respectively. “The people have spoken loud and clear,” exclaimed Marine Le Pen. “They no longer want to be led by those outside our borders, by EU commissioners and technocrats who are unelected. They want to be protected from globalization and take back the reins of their destiny,”… Continue reading
Narendra Modi, who has won three of the last five elections in Gujarat, now vows he will do for India what he has done for his state of 60 million – encourage investment and fight corruption. As to whether the “Modi Model” will work on a country or 1.3 billion in the same way it has on a state with 1/20 that many people remains to be seen.
Last month, Russia invited representatives from the European far-right parties to Crimea as observers of the referendum on whether the predominantly Russian-speaking state wanted to leave Ukraine to become part of Russia.
Given the unpopularity of the Hollande government, the disarray of France’s center-right opposition, the rise of the National Front, and the European parliamentary elections in May, there are clearly going to be developments coming from the votes cast on March 23rd and the run-off…
With the possible exception of John and Robert Kennedy, no two American brothers had greater roles in making their mark on the world that John Foster and Allen Dulles –respectively, U.S. secretary of state and director of the post-World War II Central Intelligence Agency throughout most of the 1950s.
Just two months after the presidential election in Honduras was held and President-elect Juan Orlando Hernandez prepares to take office today, it is clear that the Honduran people as well as the international community have accepted the outcome.
Even before Ivanishvili assumed political power, parliament voted to shift many powers from the presidency itself and, in effect, gave Georgia a parliamentary form of government instead of a strong presidential system. More than a few Georgia-watchers speculate that this change was part of a master plan by Saakashvili to call the political shots as prime minister in the manner of Russia’s Putin between presidential stints. Continue reading
Politicians and pundits from Berlin to Washington are still reeling over the landslide win of German Chancellor Angela Merkel a week ago Sunday. Observers wonder what a third term and a new cast in her ruling coalition in the Bundestag (parliament) means for the strong-willed lady known as “Iron Angie,” “Mother Europe.”
The irony about Germany’s national election September 22 is that there is far greater interest in the outcome in foreign capitals from Washington to Athens to Brussels than there is among voters in Berlin, Munich or anywhere in Germany. The reason for this “ho-hum” attitude among the German electorate about their election as well as the “can’t wait” attitude among the rest of the world is summarized in two words: Angela Merkel. Her CDU (right-of center) Party is leading comfortably in nearly all polls for Bundestag races (lower house of parliament) later this month.
Alternate history—an intellectual “parlor game” played by novelists, historians, and political scientists—envisions the world as it might have been had certain developments in history turned out differently. The late science fiction writer Phillip K. Dick in The Man in the High Castle and British novelist Robert Harris’s best-selling Fatherland both portray a world in the 1960’s two decades after Germany won World War II. Harry Turtledove has made a cottage industry out of alternate history by developing several “what might have been” scenarios into a string of books (including a thirteen-volume series on the uneasy relationship between the U.S. and the Confederate States of America for eighty years after the Civil War ended in a standoff).