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Angela Merkel: gentle persuasion in an age of populism

By Matt Qvortrup, Chair of Applied Political Science, Coventry University
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“Now she is all alone.” Former president Barack Obama slightly squinted and bit his lip in characteristic fashion as he spoke these words to his adviser. Obama had spent three hours alone with Angela Merkel in Hotel Adelon in Berlin. It was late November 2016. Donald Trump had just been elected the 45th president of the United States and his soon-to-be predecessor was worried as he prepared to leave office. Only one individual, thought Obama, could keep the liberal world order alive while America was taking leave of its geopolitical senses. And that person was the German chancellor.


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