‘Schuman at the 1950 edition of the “Röhndorfer Süßling”. Adenauer: Mariandl-andl-andl.’ On 14 January 1950, as French Foreign Minister Robert Schuman visits the Federal Republic of Germany, German cartoonist Ernst Maria Lang paints an idyllic picture of relations between France and Germany. At the heart of Adenauer’s wine-growing home village of Rhöndorf, on the slopes of the Siebengebirge, a mountain range south of Bonn on the right bank of the Rhine, Robert Schuman, wine bottle in hand, and Chancellor Adenauer, playing the mandolin, enjoy the company of a young Marianne wearing a Phrygian cap. This visit would in reality be marked by tensions between France and the FRG over the settlement of the question of the Saar territory.
‘European duet. On a slightly out-of-tune piano'. From 13 to 15 January 1950, Robert Schuman, French Foreign Minister, visits the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) to meet Federal Chancellor Konrad Adenauer. Despite the differing views of the two men on the settlement of the Saar question, German cartoonist Wand emphasises both the historic nature of this meeting and the commitment of the two men to European unity.
‘Franco-German discussions. And don’t come back to see me without Alsace and Lorraine!’ On 25 January 1950, one week after Robert Schuman’s trip to West Germany, French cartoonist Louis Mitelberg illustrates the somewhat strained discussions between the French Foreign Minister and the Federal Chancellor Konrad Adenauer. The Federal German Government’s pleas for an end to the special status of the Saar and for the territory to be reincorporated into the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) are met with blunt refusal from France. The Saar question is the source of a great deal of tension between the two countries. The reference in the cartoon to Alsace and Lorraine also recalls previous territorial disputes with the German neighbour. On the steps we see French Foreign Minister Robert Schuman (on the left) being forcefully ejected by Federal Chancellor Konrad Adenauer.
‘European shadow play …' On 22 February 1950, German cartoonist Peter Leger illustrates the difficulties involved in the European unification process and highlights the dissensions between the countries of Western Europe in determining a common project for a united Europe.
‘In response to Adenauer’s proposal, Marianne turns a beautiful but cold shoulder.’ On 7 March 1950, Federal Chancellor Konrad Adenauer grants an interview to American journalist Joseph Kingsbury-Smith in which he raises the idea of a Franco-German union. On 13 March 1950, German cartoonist Fritz Meinhard illustrates the lack of interest from the French authorities in this German proposal. France, depicted as a young Marianne wearing a Phrygian cap, remains indifferent to the advances of Federal Chancellor Adenauer, who is holding a bouquet of flowers, preferring to devote itself entirely to another suitor, British Foreign Secretary Ernest Bevin.
‘Conradin von Adenau: One day, my dear, you will hear me!’ On 17 March 1950, the cartoonist for the German daily newspaper Der Mittag illustrates the flat refusal of the French government authorities to Chancellor Konrad Adenauer’s plan for a union between France and the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG). At the entrance to the ‘France’ castle with raised drawbridge, Federal Chancellor Adenauer, depicted as a knight in armour, cannot join his maiden, Marianne, shown wearing a Phrygian cap.
On 23 March 1950, after the interview with Konrad Adenauer conducted by US journalist Joseph Kingsbury-Smith of the International News Service (INS), German cartoonist Ernst Maria Lang illustrates the idea put forward by the Federal Chancellor for the creation of an economic union between the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) and France.
On 23 March 1950, German cartoonist Peter Leger illustrates the plan of Federal Chancellor Konrad Adenauer, who proposed an economic union between France and the Federal Republic of Germany in an interview on 20 March 1950 with the US press agency International News Service.