German Chancellor Angela Merkel aimed for a coalition agreement that would make everyone happy. Instead, last Wednesday she achieved something that sounds equally impossible: She unveiled an agreement that makes everyone angry.
The Social Democrats are so angry that they’ve already thrown out their party leader.
Martin Shulz knew the coalition deal would be unpopular, so he decided to step down as party leader to try and prevent his personal unpopularity from derailing it. As a consolation prize, he would become Germany’s foreign minister. But his resignation failed to placate his party’s anger, and on Friday, he was forced to give up the consolation prize too.
This anger is putting the entire coalition agreement at risk. The Social Democratic Party (spd) has to vote on it, and it’s anybody’s guess which way it will go.
Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (cdu) is angry too. It won the election and is the largest party in the coalition. Yet, somehow, it has none of the major cabinet positions. The spd came away with the Finance and Foreign Ministry—the two most prestigious jobs in the cabinet (after chancellor, of course). The third big job—the Interior Ministry—went to the Christian Social Union (csu).
“Many Christian Democrats are livid, feeling betrayed by their own chancellor,” wrote Handelsblatt editor in chief Andreas Kluth. “They will now search in earnest—albeit still discreetly—for a successor from their own ranks to take over from Ms. Merkel as party leader and chancellor. She will be lucky if she survives politically for this full term.”
Spiegel Online also noted the violent atmosphere, writing that “Merkel has sold the family silver to stay in power and stirred her erstwhile catatonic party, the Christian Democratic Union (cdu), into a potentially revolutionary fury.”
“[T]he anger this time isn’t limited to individual voices as has traditionally been the case when it comes to criticism of Merkel,” wrote Spiegel Online. “Her ability to constantly keep a tight lid on possible intra-party uprisings has long been a hallmark of her tenure, but that lid appears to have come ajar.”
Chancellor Merkel was forced to defend the coalition deal on tv on Sunday. It didn’t help much. Handelsblatt wrote in its morning brief that “Merkel’s cameo didn’t do what she had intended: The bomb she had hoped to defuse is still ticking.” And so, it continued, “the curtain slowly drops on the chancellor’s political career.”
Still others are angry too. They don’t belong to any political party. They’re concerned for the safety of their families and their jobs after Merkel’s unprecedented experiment with mass migration. For some, this fear is so great that it is driving Germany’s sale of guns to record heights.
These people are turning against traditional political parties and toward parties like the Alternative für Deutschland (AfD). Not all of those who are angry with Merkel will vote AfD. Some are put off by its more extreme politicians. Others think they have a better chance of stopping mass migration by sticking with the cdu or its sister party, the csu. But many are embracing what was once an unthinkable political position.
If the coalition is approved, then the AfD will become the main opposition party in the Bundestag—giving it more speaking time, leadership of more committees, and much more visibility to the general public. Recent polls put the AfD just 2 percent behind the spd. It’s within a whisker of becoming Germany’s second-most popular party.
The coalition deal—this unpopular compromise between mainstream parties—is a gift to the AfD. “The AfD could not have asked for an easier target than this ‘grand coalition,’” wrote Kluth.
Because of this, Kluth and many others believe it would be better for Germany, in the long run, if spd members torpedo the coalition deal. This coalition is not the solution to Germany’s election crisis. Instead, it is yet another dose of all the problems that caused the crisis in the first place.
Over the next few weeks we’ll find out if Germany is going to get a government nobody likes or continue to stumble along without one.
Either way, the stage remains perfectly set for the radical change in German politics that the Trumpet has warned of for years.
The Bible warns that a “king of fierce countenance” will rise up in Europe. The anger building in Germany will lead to the rise of this fierce king.
Daniel 11:21 states that this strong leader will come into power “by flatteries.” Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry writes that the way this is verse is worded means that he’ll probably get in “not by votes, but through a coalition government of some kind” (A Strong German Leader Is Imminent ). “We need to watch Germany and Europe carefully,” he adds.
These prophecies confirm that something dangerous and revolutionary is afoot in Germany. This “fierce” king could arrive almost any day. So keep watching Germany.
And as you do, you need an overview of these prophecies and solid proof that they apply to modern Europe. Our article “Why the Trumpet Watches the Rise of a German Strongman” will take you through these prophecies. It will show you where even Jesus Christ Himself said that these scriptures apply to the modern day. And it will show you the inspiring hope that the scriptures talk about: what comes after this fierce king. ▪