A tail of two iron ladies

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher

Image via Wikipedia

Angela Merkel, the Chancellor of Germany
Image via Wikipedia

Lady Thatcher as UK Prime Minister was affectionately known as the “iron lady” for her determination and strong will. Personally, I was very much an admirer of Lady Thatcher, both as a leader and a politician.

In the last couple of years I have been a keen follower of politics and believe that the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel is an “iron lady” as well. I very much respect Angela Merkel as a shrewd and determined politician.

It is interesting to reflect on the similarities between Lady Thatcher as UK Prime Minister and Angela Merkel as German Chancellor.


  • Leaders of right-wing political parties
  • From humble rather than privileged backgrounds
  • Dogged and determined
  • Passionate about small government and supporters of the family and private enterprise
  • Supporters of austerity where appropriate 
  • Strong supporters of neoliberalism, rather than Keynesianism  


  • Lady Thatcher became known for not changing her views whereas Angela Merkel is more comfortable in changing her views as the context changes
  • Finally, Angela Merkel probably has far stronger pro-European views than Lady Thatcher – of course, times are different too.

These were just a few quick thoughts. Happy to hear other views.

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