Patterico's Pontifications


A Merry Christmas Eve Round-up

Filed under: General — Dana @ 7:02 pm

[guest post by Dana]

It couldn’t be this close to Christmas without someone causing a stir about Christianity. Consider the claim of former Southern Baptist Convention president Charles Stanley’s son:

“If somebody can predict their own death and resurrection, I’m not all that concerned about how they got into the world,” Andy Stanley said in a Dec. 4 sermon at North Point Community Church, which draws 36,000 attendees across six locations in suburban Atlanta. “Christianity doesn’t hinge on the truth or even the stories around the birth of Jesus. It hinges on the resurrection of Jesus.”

(Oh bother. If both the virgin birth and resurrection did not take place (as God said it would), then God wouldn’t have been God. Further, without the virgin birth, there wouldn’t be the Son of God, and without the Son of God, there wouldn’t be the Savior, and without the Savior, we’re all screwed and might as well throw in the towel.)

Then there’s this bit of amateurish Christmas trolling by Mathew Dowd of ABC News:


Immigrants. Mangers. It would have been helpful if the Chief Political Analyst had actually read some source material beforehand:

Luke 2New American Standard Bible (NASB)

2 Now in those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus, that a census be taken of all [a]the inhabited earth. 2 [b]This was the first census taken while [c]Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 And everyone was on his way to register for the census, each to his own city. 4 Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David, 5 in order to register along with Mary, who was engaged to him, and was with child. 6 While they were there, the days were completed for her to give birth. 7 And she gave birth to her firstborn son; and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a [d]manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

On a serious note, as Christians celebrate the birth of the Divine Love, here is a beautiful story about a 73-year romance, and the wife who is readying herself to say good-bye to her husband who is receiving end-of-life care:

For 73 years — through wars in Europe and Asia and civil rights battles at home, through the assassination of a president and the rise of rock-and-roll — they shared a bed.

He’d be gone sometimes, flying missions during World War II and the Korean and Vietnam wars, but he always came back to her.

So now, as he lies in a hospital bed unable to say or do much, she lies beside him.

Like many hospitals, Fort Belvoir Community Hospital, where retired Army Col. George Morris, 94, is receiving end-of-life care, allows family members to sleep in a patient’s room on a foldout couch. But for George’s wife, Eloise, 91, a cancer survivor who has suffered two broken hips and a broken shoulder, that would be hard.

So the hospital made a special exception when they admitted him this month: They admitted her as a patient, too — a “compassionate admission,” their doctor calls it. Standard rooms are normally private, but Eloise’s hospital bed was rolled in and pushed up against George’s — a final marriage berth for a husband and wife who met as teenagers in rural Kentucky in the late 1930s.

May Col. Morris’s passage from this life to the next be peaceful, and may God keep Eloise enveloped in His love.

Finally, if you’re looking to add a little more merry to your Christmas celebration, consider making what is supposedly George Washington’s eggnog recipe:

“One quart cream, one quart milk, one dozen tablespoons sugar, one pint brandy, pint rye whiskey, pint Jamaica rum, pint sherry — mix liquor first, then separate yolks and whites of 12 eggs, add sugar to beaten yolks, mix well. Add milk and cream, slowly beating. Beat whites of eggs until stiff and fold slowly into mixture. Let set in cool place for several days. Taste frequently.”

Talk about a jingle-bell rock!!


A Young Woman’s Experience Serving On A Jury With Rex Tillerson

Filed under: General — Dana @ 10:37 am

[guest post by Dana]

Interesting take on Donald Trump’s selection for secretary of state:

Nine years ago, I showed up to the Denton County Courthouse for jury duty and got myself picked for the job. A young girl had accused her mom’s boyfriend of sexual assault, and the case was being brought to trial.

If you’ve ever served on a jury trial before, you understand the almost immediate yet very temporary bond that ties 12 strangers together who are randomly chosen from each of their private lives to fulfill a solemn public purpose.

One of our first tasks was to choose our jury foreman. Perhaps it was his business suit, his impressive stature, or his charisma, but almost everyone in that jury room suggested that this middle-aged man with graying hair was likely the most fit for the task.

Thanks, but I decline. I’m not interested in the spotlight, he told us. I didn’t think anything of it.

In her straight-forward description of the experience, the writer makes clear that she did not vote for Trump, nor is her story an endorsement of Tillerson’s nomination. It is simply a personal narrative of time spent with a man that the author saw as polite, patient and humble.

Read the whole thing.



U.S. Abstains From U.N. Vote, Or As Jonah Goldberg Puts It: Obama’s One Last Flip Of The Bird To Israel

Filed under: General — Dana @ 3:17 pm

[guest post by Dana]


In an unprecedented diplomatic rebuke of Israel, the United States abstained Friday on a United Nations Security Council resolution demanding an end to Israeli settlements, allowing the highly charged measure to pass.

The resolution was approved 14-0 with the one abstention. The vote was greeted with loud applause in the packed Security Council chamber.

The measure demands Israel “immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem.” It declares the establishment of settlements by Israel has “no legal validity and constitutes a flagrant violation under international law.”

Samantha Power, ambassador to the U.N., (ironically) attempted to reassure Israel of continued support of the U.S. support:

“The U.S. has been sending the message that the settlements must stop, privately and publicly, for five decades,” Power said.

Settlement activity, she added, “harms the viability of a negotiated two-state outcome and erodes prospects for peace and stability in the region.”

At the same time, she said, “Our vote does not in any way diminish our steadfast and unparalleled commitment to the security of Israel.” Israel, she noted, “faces very serious threats in a very tough neighborhood.”

President-elect Trump, who had publicly pressured President Obama to veto the resolution, took to Twitter in response to the vote:


Finally, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu vowed to remain fiercely defiant in the face of resolution:


Oh, and unbelievably, today President Obama marked the start of Hanukkah tomorrow, offering his good wishes to all who celebrate:

As night falls over each of the next eight days, Jews in the United States, Israel and around the world will gather to light their Hanukkah menorahs, display them proudly in the window and recall the miracles of both ancient times and the present day.

For more than two millennia, the story of Hanukkah has reminded the world of the Jewish people’s perseverance and the persistence of faith, even against daunting odds.


A Call For Trump To Derail Obama’s Midnight Regulation Express

Filed under: General — Dana @ 11:54 am

[guest post by Dana]

The immensely ungracious exit of President Obama deserves this spot-on gutting:

Barack Obama isn’t known for humility, though rarely has his lack of grace been more on display than in his final hours in office. The nation rejected his agenda. The president’s response? To shove more of that agenda down the nation’s gullet.

Notice the growing and many ugly ways the Obama administration is actively working to undermine a Donald Trump presidency. Unnamed administration sources whisper stories about Russian hackers to delegitimize Mr. Trump’s election. These whispers began at about the same time Hillary Clinton officials began pressuring electors to defy election results and deny Mr. Trump the presidency. How helpful.

Trump transition-team members report how Obama officials are providing them with skewed or incomplete information, as well as lectures about their duties on climate change. (No wonder Mr. Trump is bypassing those “official” intelligence briefings.) The Energy Department is refusing to provide the transition team with the names of career officials who led key programs, like those who attended U.N. climate talks. Sen. Ron Johnson recently sent a letter to President Obama voicing alarm over “burrowing,” in which political appointees, late in an administration, convert to career bureaucrats and become obstacles to the new political appointees.

But perhaps nothing has more underlined the Obama arrogance than his final flurry of midnight regulations. With each new proposed rule or executive order, Mr. Obama is spitefully mocking the nation that just told him “enough.”

The technical definition of a midnight regulation is one issued between Election Day and the inauguration of a new president. The practice is bipartisan. George W. Bush, despite having promised not to do so, pushed through a fair number of rules in his final months. But Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton were more aggressive, and Mr. Obama is making them look like pikers.

Mr. Obama has devoted his last year to ramming through controversial and far-reaching rules. Whether it was born of a desire to lay groundwork for a Clinton presidency, or as a guard against a Trump White House, the motive makes no difference. According to a Politico story of nearly a year ago, the administration had some 4,000 regulations in the works for Mr. Obama’s last year. They included smaller rules on workplace hazards, gun sellers, nutrition labels and energy efficiency, as well as giant regulations (costing billions) on retirement advice and overtime pay.

As a reminder, throughout his campaign, Donald Trump repeatedly committed to eliminating a vast number of regulations and reducing the size of bloated government. He has also proposed a 2-for-1 policy:

I will formulate a rule which says that for every one new regulation, two old regulations must be eliminated. So important.

While Strassel points out that President Obama hopes intends to make these changes too difficult to undue, she encourages the incoming president to make it happen, and points out why it would be in America’s best interest:

A Trump administration could send a powerful message to future presidents and build public support by highlighting the “midnight regulation” phenomenon and then making it a priority to ax every final Obama order. Single them out. Make a public list. Celebrate every repeal. That would be as profound a rebuke to the Obama legacy—a legacy based on abuse of power—as any other.

Oh, and amusingly, there is this:

The new Trump administration will find a steadily moving and proper regulatory review process in place, not a lot of messy, badly done leftovers for them to deal with, said Howard Shelanski, administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs.

“We are overwhelmingly a career staff organization,” Shelanski told Bloomberg BNA in a Dec. 5 interview in his office. “We will not be leaving behind a mess to be cleaned up on the regulatory front.”


Keeping Up with the DNC

Filed under: General — JVW @ 9:10 am

[guest post by JVW]

We are now two months away from the Democrat National Committee convening in the aftermath of their disastrous 2016 elections and selecting a new chairman/chairwoman/chairperson (I’m on an inclusion kick this morning). Since this promises to be an interesting contest with major implications on the party’s direction as they rebuild in the post-Obama era, let’s recap some of the scuttlebutt about how this race is shaping up.

Powerline has been tracking the candidacy of Minnesota Congressman, Keith Ellison, who is seeking to be the first Muslim to assume the chairmanship. This candidacy involves repudiating his past involvement with groups such as the Nation of Islam while simultaneously downplaying his allegiance to controversial Muslim advocacy organizations like CAIR and the Muslim American Society. Though the darling of progressives who are devoted to grievance group mollification and would like nothing more than to check multiple boxes on the diversity list, Rep. Ellison is being treated warily by Jewish groups and trade unions. After the disastrous leadership of Debbie Wasserman Schultz, a woman whose qualifications seemed to consist entirely of being Jewish and female, the professionals seem to want a more steady and reliable hand on the tiller, not another winner of the diversity sweepstakes.

An early challenger to Rep. Ellison was former DNC chairman, former Vermont Governor, and former Presidential primary candidate, Howard Dean, who headed up the DNC in its glory years when it captured the House and Senate in 2006 and then expanded upon those gains during the coronation of Barack Obama two years later. Under Chairman Dean, the DNC instituted a “50-state policy” in which the Democrats made a concerted effort to expand their party beyond urban strongholds and coastal states and attract appealing candidates in the upper-Midwest and the South, even if it meant soft-pedaling the party’s traditional support for gun control, abortion, gay rights, and other divisive social topics. At the same time, Chairman Dean provided shrill criticism of the Bush Administration and Republicans, but managed to avoid hamstringing the races of moderate members of his party (that of course could just go to show how unpopular the Bush administration had become in its second term). Dean was probably the most likely candidate to return the Democrats to a big tent philosophy, but alas, he seems to have not gained any traction and has thus abandoned his candidacy.

So that seems to leave Thomas Perez, the former Obama Administration Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights and later Secretary Labor, as the strongest challenger to Ellison. Perez checks a diversity box and as a Hispanic would provide the DNC with a valuable “first” for a grievance group that is way larger and more influential than Muslims, but he’s another Washington insider who doesn’t seem to have any plan for attracting blue-collar workers and social moderates back into the party’s fold. Interestingly enough, the Ellison vs. Perez race is shaping up as a proxy battle between the Bernie Sanders/Elizabeth Warren crowd (with the curious backing of Chuck Schumer) who favors Ellison and the Barack Obama crowd who favors Perez. It is noteworthy that no one seems particularly interested in discovering who is the favored candidate among the Clinton crowd. For the record, the state party chairs from Idaho, South Carolina, and New Hampshire are also running, perhaps in the hope that one of them emerges as a compromise candidate.

It’s difficult seeing either Ellison or Perez appealing to the voter who has grown tired of the Democrats’ dalliance with Occupy protests, campus crybullies, Black Lives Matter, transgender bathroom advocates, and the rest of the grievance left agenda. On other political blogs, many conservative commenters have welcomed the Democrats’ retreat into their insular progressive bubble where there can be no rational dissent to their leftward lurch, but I don’t think it bodes very well for our country. A Republican Congressional majority with a Republican President needs a legitimate and serious opposition party to temper some of its dumber ideas (bans on flag burning being a prime example), and the GOP tends to grow intellectually flabby (see the Bush years, 2003-2007) when the opposition is busy shooting themselves in the foot. Regardless of my hopes, it appears that the Democrats are bound to get worse before they can start to get better.



Trying To Track Potential Terror Suspects Over There, And Ending A Visitor Registry Here

Filed under: General — Dana @ 3:37 pm

[guest post by Dana]

While German Chancellor Angela Merkel continues to publicly defend her lenient immigration policies in spite of Monday’s terror attack in Berlin, a former head of MI6’s counter-extremism unit is pulling back the curtain and exposing the difficulties of keeping tabs on the whereabouts of potential terror suspects in Germany:

…Richard Barrett said Thursday that German authorities are finding it virtually impossible to keep track of the 7,000 potential terror suspects roaming around the country.

Intelligence failings have been at the forefront of the public’s mind, following Monday’s devastating truck terror attack on a Christmas market in Berlin, leaving 12 dead and 48 injured.

Not only did German authorities arrest the wrong suspect, but they determined that the actual suspect, Anis Amris, a known supporter of the Islamic State and recruiter for the terror group, had been arrested three times in 2016 alone and should have already been deported. Amris is a 24-year-old Tunisian asylum seeker.

Barrett said it’s hardly surprising that German law enforcement are having a difficult time because they have to continually keep track of 550 “really extreme potential terrorists on the books.”

In total, the number of “live” potential terror suspects roaming around Germany amounts to 7,000. These suspects are believed to have some level of communication with extremist groups and are deemed worth of further investigation.

Merkel doesn’t agree that there is a problem with her anti-terrorism efforts:

[S]he defended her anti-terrorism record and championed the “seamless” cooperation Germany has with other intelligence services.

“We have made considerable efforts in recent years to better meet the danger of terrorism,”

Of course, the simple question is: If the front door hadn’t been left wide open for nearly anyone to enter, would Germany be facing such an enormous and unmanageable problem now?

With that, it was announced today that a visitor’s registry here in the U.S. that was instituted after 9/11 to keep track of immigrant men from mostly Muslim countries, has been scrapped by President Obama:

The original National Security Entry-Exit Registration System, or NSEERs, launched about a year after 9/11, requiring men and boys from a variety of mostly Middle Eastern countries to register with the federal government upon their arrival in the U.S. Registration, which also applied to immigrants from North Korea, included fingerprints and photographs and a requirement to notify the government of any address changes.

But after the Obama administration suspended the program in 2011, the Department of Homeland Security put out a notice Thursday officially removing what it called “outdated regulations” pertaining to the “obsolete” system.

Here is what the notice said:

“DHS ceased use of the National Security Entry-Exit Registration System (NSEERS) program in 2011 after finding that the program was redundant, captured data manually that was already captured through automated systems, and no longer provided an increase in security in light of DHS’s evolving assessment of the threat posed to the United States by international terrorism. The regulatory structure pertaining to NSEERS no longer provides a discernable public benefit as the program has been rendered obsolete. Accordingly, DHS is removing the special registration program regulations.”

The decision by the president comes when terror attacks are increasing around the globe and the official transition to a Trump presidency is just around the corner.

One year ago, then-candidate Trump called for “…a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on”.

The president-elect revised the statement in June of this year:

“When I am elected, I will suspend immigration from areas of the world when there is a proven history of terrorism against the United States, Europe or our allies, until we understand how to end these threats,”

After Monday’s attack in Germany, Trump said that the attack was “an attack on humanity and it’s got to be stopped.” When pressed about his campaign pledge to temporarily suspend Muslim immigration [from an unnamed list of countries], Trump responded:

“You know my plans. All along, I’ve been proven to be right, 100 percent correct,” Trump said when asked if the attack in Berlin had caused him to reevaluate the proposal. “What’s happening is disgraceful.”

From the incoming administration’s website:

Suspend, on a temporary basis, immigration from some of the most dangerous and volatile regions of the world that have a history of exporting terrorism.


The Ivanka Trump Story And Fake News

Filed under: General — Dana @ 2:03 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Of course, when you consider what’s happening in the world, the harassment of Ivanka Trump and her children this morning isn’t the biggest thing happening at the moment. However, the MSM distorting and misrepresenting a story and making painfully obvious efforts to give cover to select individuals should always be called out. In this case, the individual is a gay, liberal male harasser of women and children. And when media outlets “re-framing” the incident are now Facebook’s official “news checkers,” it seems all the more necessary to point out the distortions.

So, this was Matthew Lasner’s tweet this morning (he has since deleted his account). Lasner makes it very clear that his husband went out of his way to chase down Ivanka Trump so that he could harass her. Not talk to her, engage in conversation, chat or be diplomatic. There is no if, and, or but to it:


Here is a sampling of the um, adjustments to the story. Remember, too, that there was eye-witness testimony to what took place on the plane. Make note of the words “expressing displeasure,” “allegedly harassing,” “talking to Ivanka,” “questioning why,”





Let me know if you find any other examples and I’ll post them.

As I said yesterday, fake news, it’s is all the rage.


Ivanka Trump And Her Children Harassed By Fellow Passenger On JetBlue Flight

Filed under: General — Dana @ 8:45 am

[guest post by Dana]

It is being reported that Ivanka Trump was verbally accosted by a fellow passenger on a JetBlue flight out of JFK. Trump, who had her three children with her, was berated by a male passenger who not only yelled at Ivanka Trump, but her children as well:

Ivanka was on a JetBlue flight leaving JFK Thursday morning with her family when a passenger started screaming, “Your father is ruining the country.” The guy went on, “Why is she on our flight. She should be flying private.” The guy had his kid in his arms as he went on the tirade.

A passenger on the flight tells TMZ Ivanka ignored the guy and tried distracting her kids with crayons.

JetBlue personnel escorted the unruly passenger off the flight. As he was removed he screamed, “You’re kicking me off for expressing my opinion?!!”

An update was added to the original report:

The husband of the unruly passenger tweeted an hour before the plane took off, *”Ivanka and Jared at JFK T5, flying commercial. My husband chasing them down to harass them.”

Of course, over at the NY Daily News, in their report, “JetBlue passengers kicked off flight over complaints about Ivanka Trump, Jared Kushner,” it’s a bit of a different story:

A Hunter College professor says he and his husband were booted from a JetBlue flight leaving JFK International Airport after complaining that Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner were on their flight.

“My husband expressed displeasure in a calm tone, JetBlue staff overheard, and they kicked us off the plane,” wrote Matt Lasner, an associate professor of urban studies and planning.

Jet Blue released a statement:

[T]he decision to remove customers is made “if the crew feels the situation runs the risk of escalation during flight.”

I was not able to find any report of the incident on The New York Times website, nor The Washington Post. Sadly, we already know that any hands-off policy with regard to a politician’s minor children (or grandchildren, as in this case), only applies if there is a “D” after their name. Just ask Sarah Palin and Ted Cruz…

Here is husband Matthew Lasner’s tweet, which he has since deleted:




Now You Tell Us: Righteous To Hope That A President Not Succeed

Filed under: General — Dana @ 1:21 pm

[guest post by Dana]

There is a new movement afoot. And while I get that these millennials are smugly convinced their cause is a worthy one, asking for a hand-out to pay for their hobbies activism is a bit embarrassing, no?

A group of millennial activists from across the country plan to open a “movement house” in Washington DC next month, which will serve as a permanent base to protest Donald Trump’s presidency.

The organizers are mostly women of color, many of whom campaigned for Bernie Sanders during the Democratic primary.

The house, which will be set up by inauguration day on 20 January, has been dubbed “District 13”, in a reference to a rebellious neighborhood in the Hunger Games books and films. [Ed: Rebel Alliance would have been a better choice.]

Activists told the Guardian that it will serve as a “space for the best kinds of troublemakers from around the country”. The property will be located in Capitol Hill, close to the White House and the Capitol building, and will enable activists to quickly mobilize against Trump should he court controversy during his presidency.

The groups launched a crowdfunding effort on Tuesday to support District 13. They aim to reach $50,000, which will cover the house’s rent for one year.

Anyway, remember when a popular radio commentator was excoriated for wishing that President Obama’s policies would fail?

So I’m thinking of replying to the guy, “Okay, I’ll send you a response, but I don’t need 400 words, I need four: I hope he fails.” (interruption) What are you laughing at? See, here’s the point. Everybody thinks it’s outrageous to say. Look, even my staff, “Oh, you can’t do that.” Why not? Why is it any different, what’s new, what is unfair about my saying I hope liberalism fails? Liberalism is our problem. Liberalism is what’s gotten us dangerously close to the precipice here. Why do I want more of it? I don’t care what the Drive-By story is. I would be honored if the Drive-By Media headlined me all day long: “Limbaugh: I Hope Obama Fails.” Somebody’s gotta say it.

Now, not only is hoping that a president not succeed, fashionable, it’s also admirable, and necessary:

“Ultimately it’s to make sure we hold him accountable,” said Moumita Ahmed, the founder of Millennials for Revolution, a group which span off from the Bernie Sanders-supporting Millennials for Bernie.

“Because his presidency is not normal at all. It’s our duty to make sure he doesn’t succeed.

“If he succeeds it’s a message that everything he stood for is OK. That it’s OK to get to power in the way that he did, and hurt all the people he’s hurt.”

District 13’s crowd sourcing page here. Because I know you want to give:

Millions of us took action this year to get Bernie Sanders into office – now we’re going to take the fight right to DC, up in Donald Trump’s orange face.

Try to destroy Medicare and the social safety net? In your face.

Try to roll back the Clean Air Act so we end up with China-style shelter-in-place warnings on bad air days? In your face.

Muslim registry and mass deportations of Latinos? In your face.

We’re going to take the fight to Trump by building a base right in the heart of Capitol Hill.


Germany Vows To Remain An Open And Free Society In Spite Of Deadly Attack At The Berlin Christmas Market

Filed under: General — Dana @ 10:51 am

[guest post by Dana]

This is unsurprising:

A 23-year-old Tunisian man sought as a suspect in the deadly truck attack at a Berlin Christmas market had been the subject of a terrorism investigation and slated for deportation, a top security official said.

The suspect had been on the radar of intelligence officials across Germany before Monday’s truck attack and was being investigated by state prosecutors on suspicion of planning an attack, said Ralf Jäger, the interior minister of the western German state of North Rhine-Westphalia.

The suspect’s application for asylum was rejected in June 2016, but he couldn’t be deported because he lacked a valid passport, Mr. Jäger said. German authorities sought to get a new passport, but Tunisia initially challenged whether the man was in fact a Tunisian citizen, Mr. Jäger said. The new travel documents happened to arrive on Wednesday, he said.

“This person attracted the attention of various security agencies in Germany because of contacts to a radical Islamist milieu,” Mr. Jäger said at a news conference.

At least there is now an acknowledgement of what so many already knew would be inevitable with taking in so many young, male refugees:

“There is clearly a connection between the refugee crisis and the elevated terror danger in Germany,” conservative lawmaker Stephan Mayer said after a closed-door briefing in parliament on the investigation. “The identity of this Tunisian also underlines this, since he clearly entered Germany…in the context of the refugee crisis.”

However, in spite of increasingly coming under fire for her immigration policies which allowed nearly one million refugees to enter the country, many of whom lacked identification, it appears that German Chancellor Angela Merkel will continue to put out the welcome mat anyway:

Ms. Merkel and other officials have emphasized that they did not want the attack to jeopardize Germany’s commitment to a free and open society, and Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier reaffirmed that idea on Wednesday. “We want to uphold this way of life, and not let it be destroyed by anyone, not even whoever was responsible for what happened here,” he told reporters.

In spite of this most recent terror attack, Merkel still has her defenders:

Merkel has established herself as the best and strongest voice of the values of a liberal Europe, and her steadfastness under pressure – at least her rhetorical steadfastness, for her policies have been modified to accommodate some of her critics’ concerns – is a beacon in a continent that is increasingly inward turning, nativist and afraid.

And every time she stands up for what postwar Europe represents, she consolidates Germany’s rebirth. When in her summer press conference, on 31 August last year, as thousands of refugees trekked northwards into Hungary, she told the world “We can do it”, and when a few days later she announced that no one would be stopped from seeking asylum, and when a few days after that she posed for a selfie with one of the refugees from the first train to draw into Munich station, for millions of people around the world she reset the image of her country.

As a reminder, Monday’s attack, considered one of Germany’s deadliest, left 12 dead, 48 wounded, and of the wounded, it is being reported that 12 of them remain in serious condition.


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