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No light at the end of the shore

No light at the end of the shore

Image: hans braxmeier

After the dark winter, chancellor angela merkel expects more difficult months ahead

Germany, march 2021. The winter is coming to an end. This is exactly what angela merkel had predicted at the end of october. At that time, during a tough debate in the bundestag at the beginning of new corona-related restrictions, the chancellor had declared: "winter will be hard, four long hard months, but it will end."

The then decreed "partial lockdown" should initially apply only one month, until the end of november. As is well known, things turned out differently. The measures to reduce infections turned out to be too weak. That is why they were suspended at the beginning of december until 10. January verlangert. In january, the measures were not only extended again, but further tightened up.

Summa summarum, angela merkel’s forecast has thus been confirmed: the winter was lonely and hard. But since everything that has a beginning also has an end, now also the dark winter 2020/21 comes to an end.

With the changing light conditions, the metaphors of the german chancellor are now also changing. On wednesday afternoon, the media reported their latest four-month forecast. "That’s three, four hard months now: march, april, may, june", mrs. Merkel is said to have stated in a public conversation with employees of aid and crisis telephones.

Whether these got the crisis with so much honesty is not known. But the probability is very high that this prognosis of mrs. Merkel will also come true. On the one hand, few would want to deny that march is followed by april, may by may, and june by june. Little can be said about the precision of this statement.

Chancellor expects improvement in summer, when effects of vaccination became clear. Since the corona vaccinations in germany, unlike in other countries, are progressing only sluggishly, it is quite possible that this part of the forecast will also increase: presumably, the coming months will be less dark, but not much less severe than the last four months, as vaccinations are still far from making a significant impact.

The chancellor is certainly right when she explains that the political handling of the crisis is marked by uncertainty. This is due to the fact that the dynamics of the pandemic are difficult to predict. However, it is also uncertain – the chancellor probably didn’t mean it that way, but that’s how one could think – how long the phase of political lack of conception will continue.

At least that is what it sounds like when you listen to the chancellor: "we are now trying to build bridges, but we don’t know exactly where we are building them", she is said to have said on wednesday.

"Well, we don’t see the shore either."

This was not only allowed to happen to her and hers. Also on wednesday, it was announced that the decision on when corona vaccinations can be administered in doctors’ offices has been postponed. The background is different assessments among the health ministers of the countries.

Now we want to do as the chancellor did and also venture a prognosis: the opinion will prevail that vaccinations in doctors’ offices are a fine thing that should be initiated as soon as possible. Everything else would be boundless.

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