The end of the Merkel era offers a moment for reflection in Europe. Germany’s outgoing chancellor often acted as a shock absorber for the European project, making sure that the necessary compromises were made. However, Angela Merkel’s hesitation often cost Europe.
Now, with the political changeover in Berlin and the upcoming elections in Paris, the European Union has a chance to develop a more solid leadership. This is needed if the EU is to remedy its finance and foreign policy deficits that have caused the bloc to be snubbed even by allies.