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Ellen Hart: Sept. 11, the day the world changed - Fayetteville Observer

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

I knew then it was true. AFN didn't normally go to a major feed like CBS, unless it was a crisis. We sat and listened in shock for a few minutes. I pulled out of the parking lot and headed home to Kriftel, our small village halfway between Frankfurt and Wiesbaden. At home I turned on the TV to International CNN, as it was the only English-speaking channel we could get off-post. We stared in horror at the video of the Twin Towers, smoke billowing forth, huge gray clouds of poison and evil. We sat there mesmerized for I don't know how long. The phone rang. It was Phil calling from Baumholder to see if I was OK. He said he would be driving back home and wouldn't arrive until about 10 that night. How many millions of fathers, husbands, mothers, sons, wives and daughters called each other in those moments when life stopped? I couldn't get through to the States by phone to talk to my children, so I emailed them. The next day we awakened and wondered if it had been a bad dream. Not so. CNN was still reporting on the attack, showing over and over videos of the planes crashing into the towers. Shots of the Pentagon with its gaping and smoking hole. Shanksville, Pennsylvania, where Flight 93 crashed. Stories of Todd Beamer, a leader of brave passengers and heroes. "Let's roll!" The long line of cars at the gate of the Wiesbaden Army Airfield where I worked hindered so many of us the next day. Many soldiers parked their cars on the side of the road and walked through the gate after being thoroughly inspected. The German people mourned with us. Flowers appeared at the sign at the front gate of the airfield. Both Germans and Americans visited the fountain in the center of the Wiesbaden stadtmitte -- town center -- as the days passed. Flowers, notes and candles around the fountain fanned out across the cobblestone plaza. I didn't know it at the time, but on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, a young man named Michael Tanner entered One World Trade Center in lower Manhattan and rode the elevators to Cantor Fitzgerald's corporate headquarters on the 101st to 105th floors. The offices were above the impact zone of one of the hijacked planes. Cantor Fitzgerald lost more than two-thirds of its workforce, considerably more than any of the other World Trade Center tenants or the New York City Police Department, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Police Department, the New York City Fire Department, and the United States Department of Defense, according to a Wikipedia entry. Michael Tanner was one of about 3,000 people who died that day. He was my cousin. Ellen Hart is a retired Department of the Army civilian who worked in Public Affairs at Fort Bragg. Her husband is retired from the military. They have two children and five grandchildren. http://www.fayobserver.com/living/community/ellen-hart-sept-the-day-the-world-changed/article_cf4cad8d-6eb5-57f5-a082-f87e8ba6c5fa.html

Elvis Presley traffic lights appear in German town of Friedberg - DW (English)

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Why is he there? Presley had a strong connection with Friedberg, a town of around 28,000 inhabitants, located 26 kilometers (16 miles) north of Frankfurt in the state of Hesse. Read more: Without Africans in North America, we would never have had Elvis Presley He was stationed there from October 1958 until March 1960 while serving as a soldier in the US Army. He lived in nearby Bad Nauheim. Elvis Presley in his US Army uniform while stationed in Friedberg It was there he met his future wife, Priscilla Beaulieu, whom he married after a seven-year relationship. Both towns are keen to make sure no one forgets "the King," who died in 1977, or their connections to him. While Friedberg first switched on the new traffic lights on Wednesday, Bad Nauheim holds the 'European Elvis Festival' and is planning a bronze statue of him. Flowers and pictures of Elvis left at his memorial in Bad Nauheim Bad Nauheim has long been a site of pilgrimage for Elvis' fans, and people lay candles, flowers and gifts for him. A little more action According to Götz, it took three months for the police to give the go-ahead and then a local graphic designer to send his ideas to the manufacturer. However, the work appears to have paid off, with the Wetterauer Zeitung reporting positive reviews. "Good idea," "witty," "something a little different," were some of the reactions. One person added, "I did wonder about it, but as always I crossed on green." Following a trend Transforming traffic lights has become something of a trend in Germany. The most famous are the Ampelmännchen in Berlin. Created in 1961 in what was then East Berlin, they now appear all over the united capital. The city of Augsburg now has the Kasperl puppet character in a pointed hat, Mainz has its own Mainzelmännchen, Bonn has Beethoven traffic lights...https://www.dw.com/en/elvis-presley-traffic-lights-appear-in-german-town-of-friedberg/a-46610723

Germany’s new Green divide - POLITICO.eu

Saturday, December 8, 2018

In one of Germanys most prosperous states, the Greens won 18 percent of the vote and became the second-largest party. It then achieved a similar feat in the neighboring state of Hesse, where it won 20 percent of the vote. It remains to be seen whether the party will be able to cement its support and become the champion of Germanys cosmopolitan-liberal camp for years to come. In early November, the Greens overtook the rapidly deflating SPD in nationwide opinion polls. One survey put the partys support at 24 percent, just three points below that of Chancellor Angela Merkels Christian Democratic Union. In a snap election, such a result would establish the Greens as Germanys largest left-wing force an enormous leap for the once marginal party. Buoyed by these recent successes, Greens from across Europe are gathering in Berlin this weekend to rev up their campaign for next May's European Parliament election. In the minds of many German voters, the Greens have established themselves as the polar opposite of the AfD and those who adopt a similar rhetoric. I didnt have to think about it very long, it was crystal clear, says Doris Langer, 45, of her decision to vote Green in the Bavarian election. The communications specialist from Munich used to think of herself as largely apolitical and has voted for various center-left and center-right parties in the past. But when Bavarias ruling Christian Social Union, the CDUs sister party, shifted rightward particularly on migration, a subject she cares about deeply Langer saw the Greens as her only option. They are the only ones who have a liberal refugee policy, she says. Merkels sentence from 2015, that ‘We can do it, the Greens are the only ones who take it seriously. * * * The Green surge could not have happened without the collapse of the SPD. In the birthplace of social democracy, the SPD held out longer than likeminded parties in other places in Europe. But its decline reaches back decades. In a way, social democracy became a victim of its own success. The SPD is Germanys oldest existing party. Since taking on its current name in 1890, it has dipped below 20 percent in nationwide elections only once, in 1933; the party was banned by the new Nazi government shortly after. After the war, the SPD became Germanys leading left-wing force, locked in a battle with the center-right Christian Democratic Union. After abandoning its Marxist tenets in 1959, drawing up plans to reform rather than abolish capitalism, the party gradually expanded beyond its working-class roots. Reinvented, the party attracted centrist and middle-class voters, leading to a series of SPD victories in the 1970s. Back in opposition in the 1980s and 90s, the party led regional governments in several states. The SPD governed once more between 1998 and 2005, together with the Greens. (As junior coalition partners, the Greens were weaker and less influential than now; this seven-year period was their first and so far only time in power.) But even in the SPDs 1970s heyday, its core base was already eroding. The structure of Germanys economy was changing, and with it the countrys workers. img class="wp-image-981725 size-ev-full-width"...https://www.politico.eu/article/germany-green-party-haidhausen-munich-elections-social-democrats-spd-is-the-new-red/

Germany's Greens flourish while mainstream rivals flounder

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Bavaria's state election on Sunday. It is polling strongly ahead in the election scheduled in neighboring Hesse two weeks later. The Greens have clear policies on central issues, including an emphasis on fighting climate change and a largely liberal approach to migration. The party also has a pragmatic approach and become a partner to parties from the center-right to the hard left in nine of Germany's 16 state governments. Nationally, some recent polls have shown them level with the Social Democrats, traditionally Germany's main center-left party. FILE - In this Jan. 27, 2018 file photo the new party leaders Robert Habeck, right, and Annalena Baerbock make their way on stage at the party convention of the Green party in Hannover, northern Germany. While other German mainstream parties flounder in polls and struggle to find an answer to a far-right challenge, the Greens have gone from strength to strength over the last year. (Bernd von Jutrczenka/dpa via AP) FILE - In this Aug. 27, 2018 file photo bucket wheels dig for coal near the Hambach Forest near Dueren, Germany. While other German mainstream parties flounder in polls and struggle to find an answer to a far-right challenge, the Greens have gone from strength to strength over the last year. They stand for climate protection and a largely liberal approach to migration. (AP Photo/Martin...https://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/ap/article-6268489/Germanys-Greens-flourish-mainstream-rivals-flounder.html

Flower-Power für Bayern

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Ouml;ko-Partei - und das längst nicht nur in Bayern. Ein Blick in die bundesweiten Umfragen: Auf Bundesebene bis zu 18 Prozent, nach nur 8,9 Prozent bei der Bundestagswahl im Herbst; in Hessen, wo Ende Oktober gewählt wird, 18 Prozent; in Nordrhein-Westfalen, wo sie letzten Sommer mit 6,4 Prozent aus der Regierung flogen, 17 Prozent. Längst werden die Grünen als mögliche neue Volkspartei gehandelt. Und immer wieder wird der Erfolg vor allem einem zugeschrieben - Shootingstar Robert Habeck, 49, Parteichef und Publikumsmagnet. Der Schleswig-Holsteiner tourt seit Tagen durch Bayern und veröffentlicht im Netz nicht nur Bilder von sich beim Bügeln und beim Fitnesstraining, sondern vor allem von vielen Menschen, die zu seinen Veranstaltungen kommen, reden und zuhören wollen. Was in Bayern passiere sei eine „Frischluftzufuhr für die Demokratie, schreibt er, und meint damit, dass die Alleinherrschaft der CSU wackelt. Für Habeck und Co-Parteichefin Annalena Baerbock ist diese Wahl wichtig, denn es ist die erste, seit die beiden im Januar auf Cem Özdemir und Simone Peter folgten. Seitdem arbeiten sie daran, den Grünen ein harmonisches, optimistisches, fröhliches Image zu verpassen. Scheinbar mit Erfolg, jedenfalls sehen die Umfragen danach aus. Dass mit Dieselkrise, Klimawandel und Braunkohle-Streit Ökothemen Hochkonjunktur haben, dürfte ihnen dabei zugute kommen. „Die neue SPD, „die neue Volkspartei - solche Labels werden den Grünen nun schon eine Weile verpasst. Das Spitzenpersonal genießt das offensichtlich, der schlimme Kater nach dem Platzen der Jamaika-Verhandlungen im Bund mit Union und FDP ist überstanden. Aber wenn es in Bayern wirklich glänzend läuft, könnte das auch Probleme bringen - Koalitionsverhandlungen der beiden Lieblingsfeinde CSU und Grüne hätten es in sich. Ausgeschlossen sind sie trotzdem nicht, wenn es für CSU und Freie Wähler - eventuell n...https://www.sz-online.de/nachrichten/flower-power-fuer-bayern-4029228.html