February 20, 2024

Floats at Germany’s Carnival parades satirize leading political figures

Throngs of revelers took to the streets of Germany’s Carnival strongholds on Monday, accompanied by floats that satirized the Ukrainian and Russian presidents, German politicians, former U.S. President Donald Trump and lots of others.

Shrove Monday parades are a standard excessive level of Carnival celebrations in Cologne, Duesseldorf, Mainz and different locations in western Germany, drawing massive crowds of locals and guests.

Every yr, floats handle present nationwide and international political points with biting sarcasm.

This yr, a larger-than-life Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy progressed via the streets of Cologne with an indication studying “To be or NATO be.” Zelenskyy needs Ukraine to have the ability to be a part of the Western army alliance.

In Duesseldorf, a float depicted Trump stabbing a Ukrainian soldier within the again — a reference to opposition amongst Republicans to assist for Ukraine. Another had the ex-president and 2024 presidential candidate carrying scissors and a U.S. flag lower into the form of a swastika.

In Mainz, a “Barbies and Ken” pink automobile float featured Russian President Vladimir Putin behind the co-leaders of two German political events, the far-right Alternative for Germany and the brand new Sahra Wagenknecht Alliance, that criticize sanctions in opposition to Russia and oppose weapons deliveries to Ukraine.

The battle between Israel and Hamas was additionally a theme. A float in Duesseldorf depicted a determine in army garb labeled “Hamas” pushing what gave the impression to be a household towards an Israeli tank.

Germany’s unpopular authorities got here in for lampooning, with Chancellor Olaf Scholz portrayed as a sloth and Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock as an elephant in a porcelain store, the German equal of a bull in a china store.