Social Democrat leader Sigmar Gabriel has already given up hope of beating Chancellor Angela Merkel in Germany’s 2017 general election. Photograph: Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Germany doesn’t go to the polls until 2017 but Social Democrat (SPD) leader Sigmar Gabriel has already given up hope of beating Angela Merkel. (...)

German chancellor Angela Merkel: underlined the link between further solidarity for Greece with Athens ‘continuing to show responsibility for itself’. Photograph: Sean Gallup/Getty Images

In November 2011 an ally of Chancellor Angela Merkel raised hackles for claiming Europe, having swallowed Berlin’s crisis remedy, “now speaks Germa(...)