Prompting a series of rather clumsy admissions from politicians, diplomats, and historians alike, an old friend from home has asserted that Luxembourg is actually in Germany.
“Hey, long time no see, where are you living now?” the friend, whom you hadn’t seen in nearly 10 years, said when you saw him at a bar during a recent visit to your home country.
“Luxembourg, huh,” he replied. “That’s in Germany, right?”
When told that Luxembourg is not in Germany but is its own country, the friend begged to differ.
“Nah, I’m pretty sure Luxembourg is in Germany,” he said. ”I mean, it is in Germany.”
Facing pressure to take a position on the matter, Luxembourg Prime Minister Xavier Bettel was quick to admit that the friend had a good point.
“Yes, well, the name Luxembourg does sound rather German-ish, doesn’t it?” he said. “We do have a thing for sausages and beer. We kind of speak German, I guess. Luxembourg is certainly not in France or Belgium, so I guess that means we’re in Germany. Sorry about the confusion, everyone. I shall resign immediately.”
Bettel then gathered his personal belongings and left his office, replacing the red lion of the Luxembourg government on the door with a hastily drawn German-style eagle.
Paul Schneider, an expert in the history of Luxembourg, admits that he’s always had his doubts.
“I was, like, 90 percent sure that Luxembourg was its own country, but there was always this little voice whispering, no it’s not, no it’s not,” he said. “Now I know that was the voice of reason.”
German Chancellor Angela Merkel greeted the news with slight indifference, saying only, “Ja, ja.”
On Friday, UN secretary general António Guterres gave an emergency address in New York in order to preempt any potentially awkward diplomatic encounters.
“Pretty much the whole world thinks that Luxembourg is in Germany, and why is that?” he said. “I don’t want to sound patronizing to anyone who’s been living under some crazy delusion of independent statehood, but that’s because Luxembourg is in Germany.”
When pressed by reporters to explain what Luxembourg actually is, Guterres replied: “It’s sort of like a large city, or a small state or — or a castle surrounded by some farmland, or something like that.”