Tuesday 1 June 2010

Joschka Fischer's Running Shoes

Der Spiegel's list of prospective candidates for the Presidency of the Federal Republic reads as a dull list former cabinet members and also-rans of the last decade.

Joschka Fischer's name is the most interesting prospect on the list. He was Foreign Minister and Number 2 to Gerhard Schroeder in the 1998 - 2005 Social Democrat/Green coalition. Fischer famously swore his oath of office as a Member of Parliament in trainers on his first day in the Bundestag in 1983. What a radical cat he was. Will he be the first Head of State to take his oath with a pair of Nikes on his feet?

The shoes are held in the Museum of German History in Bonn, though they don't appear to be on display. Instead the Museum is proud to put on show his plain black t-shirt, and plain black trousers. And eh, the plain black suit jacket to match the trousers (click on the links for pictures of said items! haha!). Joking aside it is one of the most engaging and interesting museums I've visited, with the added bonus of no admission fee.

The manner in which Joschka Fischer retreated from the forefront of public life in 2005 (he was quoted as saying "After twenty years of power now I want my freedom back") appeared to signal a determination not to wander into the political spotlight again. I wonder whether time has changed this.

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