Time got it wrong with Angela Merkel

Photo by Thierry Ehrmann on Flickr

Time Magazine this year named Angela Merkel the Woman of the Year or, more accurately, Newsmaker of the year. They got it wrong. While Merkel was certainly in the news this year. She dealt with Greece, she dealt with Ukraine, and she’s now dealing with Syria. However in each of these she’s a reactive figure. She’s not making the news, she’s also involved in the news.

While Vladimir Putin would have made a reasonable choice, as he also has been responsible for creating some of the crises Merkel has faced, one of their “runners-up” is the real choice for Man of the Year: Abu Bakr, leader of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham.


Photo by Thierry Ehrmann on Flickr
Photo by Thierry Ehrmann on Flickr

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who has been named Caliph by his followers due to the historical importance of the territory the Islamic State now holds, is ultimate responsible for some of the biggest news of the year around the world.

Naturally the “refugee” crisis Merkel and Europe are grappling with, is all caused by Abu Bakr and the Islamic State.

Remember the Paris terrorist attacks? That goes back to Syria and the Islamic State.

How about the bombings in Ankara that shifted an election? The Islamic State did those.

What about that downed Russian plane that made all of NATO tense up? That plane was sent to shore up the Syrian regime under assault by the Islamic State.

We’re talking about Donald Trump commenting about Muslims, and that’s a response to the rise of the Islamic State’s new wave of terror.

Or what about another big headline here at home, the San Bernardino shootings? Those have been claimed by the Islamic State.

Reacting to the news is not making the news. Angela Merkel is no more the newsmaker of the year than Barack Obama is. Reacting to the news is not making the news. That’s what Merkel’s been doing, and she hasn’t managed to find a reaction that solved anything yet.

Abu Bakr, not for good but for evil, should have been the Man of the Year in the mold of Time’s first Man of the Year cover.