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Seen today in one of my local Stammcafés: the current issue of Stern, described in the previous entry; someone had drawn a Hitler moustache on Bush and drawn a Jewish kippa on his head.

Overheard at the same café: a couple of young women paging through this same Stern magazine, commenting on the articles. The article on America and the Iraq war is reached. "Die Amis sind Arschlöcher," ("Americans are assholes") says one of them and moves on to the next article.

That's where it's at in Germany, 2004.

I fear that the stern's reputation has at least recovered to the point that Maybritt Illner can refer to its recent edition as another proof of how America lied with Heidi Wieczorek-Zeul and Ulrich Kienzle nodding along. And it has recovered so far as to be a very forceful catalyst for anti-American sentiments.
And by what I read and see from stern, I fear this populist appeal is exactly what they want, probably because it's selling so good. It would certainly be interesting to see how many copies stern (or Spiegel for that matter) are selling with a 'normal' cover story and how many when they are presenting cowboy / liar Bush, blood for oil etc. I would bet large amounts of money that those anti-Bush issues make very good copy indeed. As much as I am in favour of capitalism, this is one of its bad features: populism sells better than information. And in these times, while the media are experiencing enormous economic problems, this is another very strong incentive for anti-American coverage, adding to the already existing sentiments of several journalists.

On the other hand, Thomas, this is a very clear demonstration of what many German people really think and that is good for Americans and Germans to know. There is a question of which came first the chicken or the egg. But Stern seems to be selling to opinion that exists as opposed to leading opinion.

Sorry folks, I had to temporarily close the comments section of this posting because of spamming ... stay tuned.

(Well, you can see by yourself whether comments are possible.)

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