56 percent wants Germany to punish UK for Brexit, opinion poll of Germany’s business and political leaders
“German problems are rarely German problems alone,” wrote German philosopher Ralf Dahrendorf once. German problems tragically tend to engulf the rest of world as well. The two Great Wars of the 20th century have been no exception. As European civilisation, having overcome Nazism and Communism in the last century, faces another existential threat in form of Radical Islam, this maxim might again holds some truth.
The European migrant crisis that started last year was result of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s single-handedly scrapping of the EU asylum laws and the opening of the Schengen Borders. Chancellor Merkel’s actions might have been met with disbelief or even anger in some European capitals, but she got strong backing from Brussels’ bureaucracy, and from Germany’s political and cultural elites.
A poll of German political and business leaders just confirmed this obvious assumption. Two thirds of these elite respondents support Merkel’s migrant policy.
On Tuesday, German broadcaster DW published the finding of the Allensbach Institute, Germany’s premier demoscopic research institute:
“This time, about two thirds of those polled agree with the [Merkel’s] current course. Obviously, this is because there was no further escalation of the problem. On the contrary, there was a marked dip in refugee numbers,” Köcher believes. However, 31 percent believe that this decline in numbers is a permanent one.
What’s more, a relatively small number of those polled feel that Chancellor Angela Merkel and her cabinet of ministers will succeed in combating the root causes of migration and flight in refugees’ countries of origin. A total of 29 percent think it is possible to improve living conditions in the countries of origin in the medium term. Once again, politicians are much more optimistic than top business people in this respect (40 percent versus 27 percent, respectively).
If the mass sexual assault in the city of Cologne or the recent terrorist attacks across Europe have turned the German public against Merkel’s migrant policy, it has increased her support-base amongst the country’s elite.
Opinion leaders within the German media didn’t simply fall for the government-sponsored agenda on mass-migration, but instead have been the driving force behind the “Refugees Welcome” campaign. Even the Editor-in-Chief of Germany’s leading weekly newspaper Der Zeit, Giovanni di Lorenzo, criticised his journalist colleagues for trying to become “co-creators” of the government policy on migration instead of acting as honest observers.
German media wasn’t peddling government’s positive spin on mass migration; the German media was the spin.
They also seem to have learned all the wrong lessons from the fall out of last month’s British referendum. Not hiding their contempt for democracy and the ordinary voters, majority of the German elite respondents agreed that, “[I]t’s a mistake to have the public vote directly on far-reaching decisions such as leaving the EU.” They would like Merkel to give UK a “harsh response” for daring to leave the European Union:
“[Political and business l]eaders were rather shocked by the Britons,” says Renate Köcher, managing director of the Allensbach Institute, which conducted the survey. Now that the die is cast, most of them advocate adopting a clear position: Some 56 percent of those polled believe the EU should systematically deprive Britain of the advantages of membership. [DW]
One must note that the desire to punish England apparently has a long tradition in Germany.
These poll numbers not only show the level of disconnect between the German elite and the rest of Europe, they also reveals the bubble this ruling class has been living in. Faced with the crushing reality of Europe’s failed mass migration policy, they seem to have cemented their liberal beliefs even further.
If mass sexual assault in Cologne and other German cities didn’t change it, if one Islamist mass killing after another on European soil didn’t change it; don’t hold your breath hoping for reality or logic to change this attitude anytime soon.
Video: Merkel’s refugee policy divides Germany (DW News)
[Cover image courtesy Euro News, YouTube] [ Writer is analyst reporting from Germany]DONATE
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