I still find it a bit crazy why foreign politicians come over here on their campaigns. But they do and the American Mr Obama will speak to his followers in Berlin today. OK, there may be a bunch of American expatriates staying in Berlin - in fact whenever I visit it seems like there are more and more of them and they enjoy the comparative freedom along with the low prices - but I somehow guess that those are not the people he needs to convince of anything.
So it’s just show for the sake of show or something.
Quite amusingly, his speech was planned to be held at the Brandenburg gate - right next to the brand new and ugly-as-ass American embassy. But our chancellorette perhaps wasn’t quite wrong to suggest that it might be overdoing a bit when a mere presidential hopeful should hold his advertising speech at such a historical site and they actually moved the thing elsewhere after that. She still met the guy for discussions which still strikes me as odd.
As they aptly put it in the paper:
Die Berliner, so viel scheint gewiss zu sein, werden in Scharen kommen, um bloß nichts zu verpassen. Scheu vor Gedrängel ist in dieser Stadt eine ganz untypische Haltung, zumal wenn das Dabeisein nichts kostet.
It seems to be a given that crowds of Berliners will come to make sure they don’t miss out on anything. People don’t mind crowds in this town - particularly when attendance is free.
Ah well, Germany’s finest.
My suggestion: Before becoming overly enthusiastic people should elect that guy first. And then we’ll have the chance to find out whether he differs from his predecessors in any relevant way.
Not sure for the reason for all the coverage in the non-U.S. press, but taking this trip was actually strategic for the Obama campaign, as the Republican strategy in part relies on tagging him as being inexperienced and weak on foreign policy. Every picture shaking hands with a foreign leader chips away a bit at that.
In other words, he’s doing this to help his campaign, duh. :)
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