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British ambassador stunned by interest in royal wedding
Photo: DPA

British ambassador stunned by interest in royal wedding

Published: 29 Apr 2011 08:46 GMT+02:00
Updated: 29 Apr 2011 08:46 GMT+02:00

Simon McDonald, the United Kingdom’s ambassador to Germany, said he was perplexed by the country’s huge interest in the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton on Friday.

“I understand, of course, why Britons are feverishly awaiting the celebrations,” McDonald wrote in the Friday edition of the Hamburger Abendblatt.

But the ambassador said he could not understand why four German television channels needed to broadcast the royal nuptials live.

McDonald said there were probably three reasons for the Teutonic fascination with William and Kate.

First, there were strong historical connections between the British royal family and German aristocratic houses. Second, Germany might be a confident republic, but the country once had a long tradition of monarchy. Third, many Germans had a soft spot for the personalities behind all the pomp and ceremony.

McDonald also said the Oscar-winning film “The King’s Speech” might have something to do with all the royal mania in Germany.

“Whoever watched the film might wish to learn more of the personal side to this famous royal house, which is constantly in the limelight,” he wrote.

DAPD/mry

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

09:01 April 29, 2011 by catjones
Not to mention the nutcase editorial in spiegel.
09:11 April 29, 2011 by tallady
I am not a much of a royalty fan ,but considering the alternatives on television,it is a refreshing change from all the gloom and doom.
09:37 April 29, 2011 by Simon_Kellett
Personally I am perplexed at anyone's interest in a royal wedding. I would say to all Germans: this is the 21st Century: be proud to live in a republic !!
10:10 April 29, 2011 by Gaffers
I think that the interest comes from the fact that it is one of the last true Monarchies. Politically powerless but still an integral part of the British culture. One of the first thing non Britains think about when mentioning England is our royal family. I know other countries still have monarchies but Britain was a major World power (WAS before anyone jumps on that point) so the increases the interest.

Apparently 2bn people will be watching today...
11:30 April 29, 2011 by FredFinger
The british ambassador knows that his country has been promoting this wedding vigorously so its no surprise that britain is getting value for money. Thats right, its all about money - the tourist dollar and national influence.
11:59 April 29, 2011 by king3
The country need to generate money very badly.Thanks god there is this Royal wedding.
12:26 April 29, 2011 by catjones
@Simon_Kellett....here's some news for you...the world doesn't revolve around you or germany.
12:27 April 29, 2011 by Simon_Kellett
Gaffers> Politically powerless

From Wikipedia:

According to the uncodified constitution of the United Kingdom, the monarch has the following powers:-

Domestic Powers

* The power to dismiss and appoint a Prime Minister (she may choose a Prime Minister of her own choice, though nominally she appoints the individual most capable of commanding the House of Commons)

* The power to dismiss and appoint other ministers

* The power to summon, prorogue and dissolve Parliament

* The power to grant or refuse Royal Assent to bills (making them valid and law)

* The power to commission officers in the Armed Forces

* The power to command the Armed Forces of the United Kingdom

* The power to appoint members to the Queen's Council

* The power to issue and withdraw passports

* The power to grant Prerogative of mercy (though Capital Punishment is abolished, this power is still used to remedy errors in sentence calculation)

* The power to grant honours

* The power to create corporations via Royal Charter

Foreign Powers

* The power to ratify and make treaties

* The power to declare War and Peace

* The power to deploy the Armed Forces overseas

* The power to recognize states

* The power to credit and receive diplomats
15:30 April 29, 2011 by jonburne
I have just watched the Royal Wedding and it was great. However it did remind me that in Australia the British Monarchy also has most if not all the powers listed by Simon_Kellett. Amazing but true.
15:42 April 29, 2011 by michael4096
Missed a couple:

* head on the anglican church

* manager of a good few of the historical buildings around

However, in practice, for non-anglicans, only two powers are important: head of the army and boss of the prime minister - the rest are rubber stamp jobbies for when the government decides.

All this for about a tenth the cost of an American presidential election. The economics are good even if the politics are iffy.
16:25 April 29, 2011 by DrGideonPolya
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
16:36 April 29, 2011 by digital47
I don't really understand the fascination for those freeloaders. Thank God we don't have a Monarchy. This endless coverage is insane.
17:21 April 29, 2011 by JAMessersmith
I hope Harry eventually raises an army in the North, marches on London, dethrones Williams and crowns himself King Henry VIIII.
18:12 April 29, 2011 by michael4096
----------> IX
18:57 April 29, 2011 by Englishted
16:25 April 29, 2011 by DrGideonPolya

2. Marriage is about having children but the UK is part of a war criminal US Alliance that is killing an estimated 1,000 Muslim children every day from war-imposed deprivation (Google "Hey, hey, USA, how many kids did you kill today? Answer: 1,000" ).

An estimated number that is also proparganda.

And how many are saved with aid?

You bandy the words Holocaust and google put them together you get "completely consumed by fire".

About the Jews in Germany true about India ,Libya and Afghanistan untrue.

Where do you get that Churchill hated India? He wanted to keep it under British control (wrong I know ) but thats not hate.

Who did it cost $10 billion? .
20:34 April 29, 2011 by tallady
DrGideonPolya if you are a proponent for the displaced and abused middle east and the Muslim faith in general take a number.

But

Stand in line if you want to protect your way of life from those disposed to destroying it.
00:41 April 30, 2011 by vonkoenigsberg
Germany has it's own monarchy under George Frederick of Prussia (a Hohenzollern) - why can't the exhalt him and his family?
05:57 April 30, 2011 by melodyblues
who cares about the monarchy?

the so called esteemed British Imperialism divided families along the Indo-Pak borders, never to be repaired again.

this royalty is just an airbrush for all the atrocities they committed in the sub-continent.

the massive durbars that were hosted during the famines in India show the total lack of concern for humanity.

for those who brag about the army saving lives in Afghanistan, I think for a 5000 year old civilization in this part of the world, we are capable of solving differences by ourselves.

nobody asked you to interfere.

why don't you venture into the remote parts of Africa, to stop all the massive killings, that have happened, and are still going on?

oh, i forgot, there is no oil in central Africa, and also maybe no political mileage will be gained from going there!

and for immigrants stalling your jobs in Britain, why don't you give back what was ours and then talk! that could be a way to express your so called HELP that you are lending to the world!
07:03 April 30, 2011 by dinerouk
As usual in these comments (everywhere) nowadays, no one can comment without someone taking offence and the whole section ending in verbal fighting and antagonism. It shows how angry people are about nothing, and how how few people can appreciate another point of view, or at least not comment if they don't like anything; they must pick a fight with someone. O Tempora O mores!....Cicero
15:49 April 30, 2011 by Simon_Kellett
> Who did it cost $10 billion?.

E.g. businesses: they still have to pay salaried staff for that day, but get zero return.
18:37 May 1, 2011 by Englishted
15:49 April 30, 2011 by Simon_Kellett

> Who did it cost $10 billion?.

E.g. businesses: they still have to pay salaried staff for that day, but get zero return.

So a headline could read today :

German businesses save $10 billion as May day falls on Sunday.

Plus all the other days this year WoW some savings?
10:28 May 2, 2011 by Gaffers
@Simon_kellet

An impressive list of powers but the reality is that the Royal family haven't been able to exercise any of these powers in a very long time. This is just on paper where the constitution has not been changed. The reality is they are politically powerless.

In general some of the comments on here just make me smile. Hailing back to a day when Britain did have an imperial empire but if you hadn't noticed we no longer do. As a nation Britain returned independence to all countries that were campaigning for it. We were not the only country that was involved in colonisation. We are not the only country that is supporting military actions in countries where human rights are being abused.

Dr Gideon throws out statistics but I do not trust any of them. $10 billion lost? Where did that number come from? How is it calculated. I work closely in the commercial sector and I know well that if people cannot spend money on one day because shops are closed they will still spend the money when they reopen. It's not as if they say "oh well I missed my chance so I'll keep the cash in the bank". It doesn't work that way.

Of course Libya were reporting their statistics openly in the past. As was Iraq before the conflict. Maybe they kept the statistics low to divert attention away from the real picture? You only have to see how Gaddafi is reacting to his people today to see he has no conscience about killing his own people just to cling to power.

Britain did commit some horrendous acts in the past. As have all countries. We are not proud of what we did but today's generation cannot be held accountable for that.

Whatever anyone thinks it was clear that the UK enjoyed their pageantry and day of celebration. The majority revelled in it and if some didn't then that was their choice.
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