Zum Anlass der heutigen deutschen Bundestagswahlen ein interessanter Blick auf Deutschland aus der New York Review of Books auf „die neue deutsche Frage“ von Timothy Garton Ash.

Here we are led back to the answer to yet another German question, that of 1945. To ensure that no Hitler would ever again come to power, the Federal Republic was designed not only to be as geographically decentralized as possible but also to have a plenitude of institutional checks and balances, including a very strong constitutional court. So the state from which decisive executive leadership is demanded today has a political system intended to make such decisive executive leadership very difficult.

So will this be Bundesrepublik Europa, the Federal Republic of Europe? Like other European countries, Germany certainly starts by thinking of Europe through the prism of its own constitutional tradition, just as the French imagine a centralized secular republic and the Brits dream of a baggy commonwealth. Federal, in the German sense, could also mean bringing powers back down to the national and state levels—something many skeptical Europeans, and not just English Euroskeptics, would welcome. But the German debate is broader than this.

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