West Germany: Mixed Reviews for the New Man

Kohl inspires confidence abroad but raises worries at home

Like Ronald Reagan, he is a folksy, conservative politician with an easygoing, leisurely work style. But last week, West Germany's newly chosen Chancellor Helmut Kohl, 52, was behaving like a man without a moment to lose. Within three hours of taking over the glass-and-steel Bonn Chancellery from Social Democrat Helmut Schmidt, the Christian Democratic leader had sworn in a new 17-member Cabinet, chaired his first Cabinet meeting, held a press conference and jetted off to Paris for a hastily arranged get-acquainted dinner with his most important Western European partner, French President...