About Konrad Adenauer

Konrad Adenauer became the first Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany in 1949. As his successor Ludwig Erhard ascended in 1963, he could look back proudly to his political achievements: the rebuilding of Germany, the consolidation of democracy and the introduction of Germany's integration into the community of free states. Today he is considered as the "Father of German Democracy".

Konrad Adenauer was born in 1876 and at the age of 41, he was elected as the youngest lord mayor of the city of Cologne. But when the national socialists came into power, he was removed from his office. After that political persecution of him started, so much so that he lived in constant fear for his life and experienced the perversity of dictatorship first-hand. During World War II, he became a witness to the destruction of his country without any possibility of anticipate it.

After the war in 1949, Adenauer was elected to become the first Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany at the age of 73. With three re-elections he stayed in the office for 14 years.

During his time as Chancellor, Konrad Adenauer pursued three main objectives: to protect the German people from destruction and to lead them to real freedom, to introduce the German citizens into the community of free states and to enable them to participate in the creation of a new future for Europe. It was during this period that the German people learned the possibility of combining democracy and political leadership and acquiring both economic success and social equality.

Together with other politicians, Konrad Adenauer formed the Christian democratic tradition. He was one of the founders of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) of Germany. He had an enormous influence on the political orientation of this new people's party where both men and women from all walks of life with every democratic traditions - conservative, liberal, as well as, social - Christians, Catholics, as well as, Protestants - are all accommodated. This foundation symbolized a new beginning for the history of German parties. His intellectual and political principles sprang out of Christian and humanistic resistance movements against any form of dictatorship, as well as, Christian social ethics and the liberal tradition of European enlightenment.

Konrad Adenauer's ideas included a free and united Europe and he pursued his aim of a new European order, which is free and democratic, extending to a worldwide cooperation.

He was a re-builder who knew that only with realism, patience and perseverance, one can create mutual advantages which can lead to an internal, as well as, external reconciliation.

In 1967 he died at the age of 91.

A foundation bearing his name reflects his values, namely: duties and responsibilities to a nation ruled by law, democratic freedom, social economy, Germany's integration in the society of democratic nations (the European Union), the understanding and cooperation on an international level.

These are the political principles, beliefs, and decisions, marking Konrad Adenauer's life.