German Chancellor Angela Merkel is Time’s Person of the Year [Video]
Merkel received the title because of her strong leadership during the crisis of the Euro and the Syrian refugee crisis this year. Time writes, "The year 2015 marked the start of Merkel’s 10th year as Chancellor of a united Germany and the de facto leader of the European Union, the most prosperous joint venture on the planet. By year’s end, she had steered the enterprise through not one but two existential crises, either of which could have meant the end of the union that has kept peace on the continent for seven decades."
The first of these was the crisis of the Euro, the currency held by the nations of the European Union. When Greece defaulted, the Euro's value threatened to be nearly worthless, but Merkel slowly and resolutely worked to fix the crisis. The Germans have even coined a verb for her methodology: Merkeling.
The second of these was the Syrian refugee crisis, wherein Merkel opened Germany's doors to refugees. It's estimated that around 1 million refugees, migrants, and asylum seekers will be in Germany by the end of 2015. Although Merkel has notoriously avoided such bold and drastic moves, she identified with the refugees, having grown up in East Germany herself. She understood the feeling of being trapped in a horrible living condition and being unable to go elsewhere for a better life. Many believe that this is her reasoning for allowing in so many Syrian refugees.
Merkel's full legacy has yet to be written, but with so many accomplishments so far, it's easy to believe that more will certainly follow.