Chopping Block

German Official Resigns Over Airstrikes

Franz Josef Jung, a labor minister in Angela Merkel’s Cabinet, has become the third German official to resign over the Afghan civilian deaths following an air strike in September. Jung was defense minister at the time of the strike, and famously refused to use the word “war” to refer to the conflict. After much consternation from political colleagues and the press, Jung said that he accepted “political responsibility” for the scandal, which led two other officials to resign on Thursday. “I decided to take this step in order to facilitate the unrestrained successful work of the federal government and to avert damage to the German military,” Jung said. Merkel had kind words for the departing minister, and said that “serving his country has always come first for him.”