German Chancellor Angela Merkel has been named as Time's Person of the Year, the publication announced Wednesday, Dec. 9, 2015. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)
Germany’s chancellor named Time's Person of the Year
December 14, 2015
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German Chancellor Angela Merkel has been named Time's Person of the Year. She was praised by the magazine for her leadership on everything from Syrian refugees to the Greek debt crisis.
Time also cited Merkel's strong response to "Vladimir Putin's creeping theft of Ukraine." On its cover, it called her "Chancellor of the Free World." Putin is president of Russia.
"Not once or twice but three times there has been reason to wonder this year whether Europe could continue to exist, not culturally or geographically but as a historic experiment in ambitious statecraft," Time editor Nancy Gibbs wrote. "You can agree with her or not. But she is not taking the easy road. Leaders are tested only when people don't want to follow. For asking more of her country than most politicians would dare, for standing firm against tyranny as well as expedience and for providing steadfast moral leadership in a world where it is in short supply, Angela Merkel is TIME's Person of the Year."
Merkel is 61. She is just the fourth woman since 1927 to be chosen. She is the first female selected since opposition leader Corazon C. Aquino of the Philippines. That was in 1986. Merkel is the first German selected since Willy Brandt. He was also the West German chancellor. He was named in 1970. Time chose him for "seeking to bring about a fresh relationship between East and West" during the Cold War. In 1999, Time picked the German-born Albert Einstein as Person of the Century.
"I'm sure the chancellor will regard this as an encouragement for her political work, for a good future for Germany as well as for Europe," Merkel's spokesman, Steffen Seibert, said.
There were seven other finalists for 2015. They included Donald Trump, the Black Lives Matter protest movement and Uber's CEO, Travis Kalanick.
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CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
Why have more men earned this distinction than women?
Write your answers in the comments section below