Understanding Germany’s Quiet Chancellor
She’s the most powerful woman in the world, but what makes Angela Merkel tick? A quantum chemist who grew up in East Germany, Merkel abruptly shifted into politics in her mid-30s, after the fall of the Berlin Wall. Today, she’s managing complex relationships with Barack Obama and Vladmir Putin, while attempting to resuscitate the eurozone. Critics denounce her apparent lack of strong political beliefs, but her friends argue that — as the child of total political repression — Merkel cares deeply about freedom and is willing to negotiate the rest.