Wednesday, December 9, 2015 2:25 pm
Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor has been named the 2015 TIME magazine person of the year.
The prestigious title was announced both on time.com and NBC’s Today Show in New York on Wednesday.
The title is awarded to an individual who has influenced the year’s news for either positive or negative reasons and is decided by the editors of the influential magazine. Last year the title went to ebola fighters and the year before that, Pope Francis.
Nancy Gibbs, the editor of TIME wrote that the Chancellor was awarded the title for “asking more of her country than most politicians would dare, for standing firm against tyranny as well as expedience and for providing steadfast moral leadership in a world where it is in short supply”.
She also praised Merkel for her leadership during the refugee crisis.
“At a moment when much of the world is once more engaged in a furious debate about the balance between safety and freedom, the Chancellor is asking a great deal of the German people, and by their example, the rest of us as well. To be welcoming. To be unafraid. To believe that great civilizations build bridges, not walls, and that wars are won both on and off the battlefield. By viewing the refugees as victims to be rescued rather than invaders to be repelled, the woman raised behind the Iron Curtain gambled on freedom. The pastor’s daughter wielded mercy like a weapon. You can agree with her or not, but she is not taking the easy road. Leaders are tested only when people don’t want to follow. For asking more of her country than most politicians would dare, for standing firm against tyranny as well as expedience and for providing steadfast moral leadership in a world where it is in short supply, Angela Merkel is TIME’s Person of the Year.”
The other candidates were Isis leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, Black Lives Matter activists, Caitlyn Jenner, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick, Vladimir Putin, Hassan Rouhani and Donald Trump.
The first person of the year was Charles Lindbergh, the first person to fly a plane solo across the Atlantic, in 1927.
Other previous winners include Mahatma Ghandi (1930), Queen Elizabeth 11 (1952), Adolf Hitler (1938) and virtually all US presidents since Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932.