From Bismarck to Merkel: Why German chancellors always matter more than we expect

As Germany goes to the polls for an historic election this weekend, Jack Blanchard looks back at some of the great pre- and post-war German chancellors and the impact they’ve had on Europe and on Britain.

Sir Christopher Clark, emeritus professor of history at Cambridge University, and Anglo-German historian Katja Hoyer discuss Otto von Bismarck and his role in creating a powerful new German nation, as well as his less-celebrated successors who helped lead Europe into catastrophic war. Timothy Garton Ash, professor of European Studies at Oxford University, recalls the great post-war chancellors who rebuilt and eventually reunified Germany, from Konrad Adenauer through to Helmut Kohl.

And POLITICO’s own Matthew Karnitschnig and former Downing Street aide Daniel Korski discuss Angela Merkel’s legacy — and her role in Britain’s departure from the EU — as she prepares to step down after almost 16 years as chancellor.



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