German chancellor awarded honor for leading Europe through indebtednes crisis and standing firm in support of aid to refugees: No one was tested more than her
Time magazine has named German chancellor Angela Merkel its Person of the Year, quoting her
resolve in leading Europe through the summer months Greek indebtednes crisis, and her encouragement of other countries to open their borders to migrants and refugees.
Angela Merkel: TIMEs 2015 Person of the Year Photograph: AP
Merkel is merely the fourth girl to ever be named Person of the Year, after Time opened up the tournament to women in 1936. She is the first woman to be awarded the title by herself
since 1986. A group of women Cynthia Cooper of Worldcom, Coleen Rowley of the FBI and Sherron Watkins from Enron represented whistleblowers, crowned People of the Year in 2001.
By the beginning of 2015, Time said, Merkel had already emerged as the indispensable player in managing Europes serial indebtednes crisis; she also led the Wests response to Vladimir Putins sneaking steal of Ukraine.
But now the prospect of Greek bankruptcy threatened the very existence of the eurozone. The migrant and refugee crisis challenged the principle of open perimeters. And ultimately, the carnage in Paris revived the reflex to slam doorways, construct walls and trust no one.
Merkel was described as a political climber, medical practitioners of the politics of newborn steps, either outlasting or outwitting competitors. She was born Hamburg in 1954, endeavoured to eastern Germany as a small child, grew up behind a Soviet stockade and trained as a quantum chemist. After entering politics in her 30 s, she rose through the ranks, to be elected chancellor in 2005. This is her 10 th year in office. Her style of governance was described by Time as
Nevertheless, this year, one of the most tumultuous in recent European history, has tested the German leaders mettle, Time editors said.
Leaders are tested only when people dont want to follow, Time editor Nancy Gibbs said in a statement issued Wednesday. For asking more of her country than most politicians would dare, for standing firm against tyranny as well as expedience and for providing steadfast moral leadership in a world where it is in short supply,
Angela Merkel is Times Person of the Year.
German chancellor Angela Merkel speaks with US president Barack Obama during the G-7 summit. Photo: Michael Kappeler/ AP
No one was tested more than her, Gibbs
said on MSNBC on Tuesday morning, in defense of Times choice. She arguably could have been Person of the Year a number of hours, but this year is the one I think that pushed her out in front. We call her the chancellor of the free world.
Other finalists included the
founder of Uber, the $62.5 bn ride-sharing app that has been met with both resistance and exuberance; Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of the Isis terror cell; Iranian chairman Hassan Rouhani and Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump.
This article was revised on 9 December 2015 to reflect that Angela Merkel was born in Hamburg , not eastern Germany as we originally had it.