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Karneval floats feature giant Obama, naked Merkel and zombie bankers

AFP/The Local · 15 Feb 2010, 14:56

Published: 15 Feb 2010 14:56 GMT+01:00

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More than a million people braved the snow in Cologne to line the route of the seven-kilometre Rosenmontag parade, where revellers traditionally poke fun at current events and enjoy tonnes of sweets hurled from the travelling floats.

Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's alleged night with a call girl was rewarded with a huge figure showing a beaming premier surrounded by breasts.

Another float at Düsseldorf's parade showed Chancellor Merkel completely in buff chasing a CD with information on German tax dodgers.

Click here for a photo gallery of the Rosenmontag parades.

Obama's controversial Nobel Prize was also the butt of the joke on one stand, which featured a huge Uncle Sam receiving the prize while the Statue of Liberty applied her torch to the effigy's behind.

The economic crisis was never far from the action, with several floats depicting Greece's debt woes and the crisis afflicting the German automotive industry, with carmaker Opel portrayed as a martyr.

One float showed effigies of bankers dolled up as Michael Jackson's famous zombies from the hit video "Thriller," as the banking world rises slowly again from the dead.

The German carnival season kicked off November 11 and culminates this week with the observance of Ash Wednesday.

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For the first time, much to the annoyance of local brewers, authorities have banned the sale of bottled beer during the carnival, following a string of injuries from flying glass when the revelry got out of hand.

"In recent years, we have seen more and more injuries from shards of glass, either due to accidents or fights," a spokesman for the town hall said.

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AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

19:45 February 16, 2010 by tollermann
Angela looks pretty sweet! Contrary to the media, guys like "real" women! 8-)
20:07 February 16, 2010 by wxman
There's no substitute for free speech in a free society, but I have to ask, "Was that necessary?"
09:11 February 17, 2010 by mixxim
In our region too the slogans often showed what the people really think of their leaders. Unfortunately the politicians continue to think they are the only ones who know what is good for us.
14:04 February 17, 2010 by lordwilliams629
The float of obama should have had him holding hands with another float of stalin.
16:11 February 17, 2010 by joesjungle
lordwilliams629 what does Obama and Stalin have in common? I really wish that the Obama haters would just fess up and be honest, they dislike him because he's black. I'm sorry but the Bush and Cheny anti-terrorist laws resemble more communist tactics than Obama's rob the rich to insure the poor schemes. Nobody is perfect and 100% of the people are never going to be happy. But stop your hatred and work towards making your life and everyone elses life better in America.
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