59 percent of Americans have an excellent or good impression of Germany – that’s one of the results of a recent survey among Americans by Frank N. Magid Associates. Other findings: 60 percent believe Germany is a modern and forward thinking society and 57 percent consider the largest European country a major economic power.
The study was conducted on behalf of the German Embassy in Washington, DC, and presented at the Center for Strategic & International Studies on January 30th, 2014, in a panel discussion. There was skepticism among the German audience whether this result wasn’t influenced by the way the study was conducted. “No”, said Magid’s Research and Strategy Director Andrew Hare. “Very German” to question a positive result about one’s own country, remarked Charles Lane, Editorial Writer at the Washington Post.
But Lane, who confessed he sounded “like a groupie for (German Chancelor Angela) Merkel”, had some advice to the Germans: “Don’t blow this”, meaning, for example: “Don’t overemphasize how much we (the Germans) are paying for you (the rest of Europe).” Bruce Stokes, Director of Global Economic Program at the Pew Research Center’s Global Attitudes Project agreed: “Don’t overplay your hand.” The “worst thing” would be for Germany to not help, should a new crisis occur.
The reason for Germany’s good standing according to the panelists: Americans like winners. And with a peaceful unification and a strong economy Germany clearly looks like a winner. But Bruce Stokes also dryly remarked: “Americans don’t spend a lot of time thinking about Germans.”