“Klassenkampf am Montag” – class struggle on Monday – that’s how the magazine Der Spiegel described the Monday demonstrations this summer against the government’s harsh measures of social counter-reform (the Hartz IV packet), which then spread to hundreds of cities across Germany. The packet of measures is known after the name of the chairman of the government commission, Peter Hartz, who also happens to be the head of human resources of the automobile giant Volkswagen.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has announced her withdrawal from the Christian Democratic Union’s (CDU) leadership election race, as well as her candidacy for the next German parliamentary election. This marks a political earthquake and the end of an era in German politics, as Merkel has been Chancellor since 2005 and leader of the CDU since 2001.

It wasn’t long ago that Germany was considered one of the few countries with a stable political situation. On the surface at least, with high economic growth and a dominant position within Europe, everything seemed to be going well for the German ruling class. However, this stability is turning into its opposite.

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