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Obama’s Not So Fabulous Trip to Europe

President Barack Obama and other world leaders walk away after participating in a group photo at the G8 Summit in Lough Erne, Northern Ireland, June 18, 2013. Pictured, from left are: Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council; Prime Minister Enrico Letta of Italy; Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada; President François Hollande of France; President Obama: Prime Minister David Cameron of the United Kingdom; President Vladimir Putin of Russia; Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany; José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission; and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

President Barack Obama and other world leaders walk away after participating in a group photo at the G8 Summit in Lough Erne, Northern Ireland, June 18, 2013. Pictured, from left are: Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council; Prime Minister Enrico Letta of Italy; Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada; President François Hollande of France; President Obama: Prime Minister David Cameron of the United Kingdom; President Vladimir Putin of Russia; Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany; José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission; and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

OBAMA WENT, he was seen and heard in Europe, in what was once East Berlin, where neither John F. Kennedy or Ronald Reagan could go. However, when he departed he was trailing abysmal reviews and silent shrugs of who cares?

Michael Hirsch delivered a devastating heat seeking review in the National Journal:

President Obama’s honeymoon with the world is over. What was it, exactly, about Obama’s controversy-marred trip to Germany and the G8 Summit in Northern Ireland that fell so flat? Ummm, how about … everything? [...] Not only is the honeymoon long over, folks. The marriage is becoming deeply troubled and, increasingly, loveless.

On June 26, 1963, President John F. Kennedy stood in West Berlin and said “Ich bin Berliner.” As Hirsch recounts, because there was a jelly donut named “Berliner” in part of Germany, the chattering classless have redrawn the history. Nobody in Berlin that day misunderstood President John F. Kennedy. They knew exactly what he meant and the crowd of 450,000 embraced him as the honorary Berliner he made himself that day.

There was also no escaping the meaning of President Ronald Reagan’s historic demand, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.”

Obama may have quoted Kennedy during his Brandenburg Gate speech, but the passion and attitude, the acting required to make the moment was missing, as was the purpose.

You cannot make history if you have nothing to say.

Hirsch gets cruel:

In contrast to JFK, and Ronald Reagan’s almost-as-famous line 24 years later — “Mr, Gorbachev, tear down this wall!” — Obama came across as more of a jelly doughnut, a little soft and perhaps too sweet inside, especially compared to the hard-edged Putin.

Now, I’ve been following politics long enough to know presidents don’t need reporters’ reviews they need the people. But back here at home President Obama has recently suffered an 8-point tumble, with his surety on policy now focused on spying on reporters, the American people, and calling transparent policies like FISA that clearly are not. All of this happening while his foreign policy strategy seems positively incoherent.

President Obama’s basketball game isn’t the only place he’s delivering air balls.

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5 Responses to Obama’s Not So Fabulous Trip to Europe

  1. fangio June 20, 2013 at 2:47 pm #

    ” You cannot make history if you have nothing to say. ” Precisely. His speeches have become rote , boring , they all have that ” been there, done that ” quality. Everyone knows his words mean nothing and never will. Try and fathom how a man who said the things he did about Europe four years ago could be the same man who sends robot assassins into any country he pleases, whenever he pleases. A man who championed transparency and now says secret programs ( even from congress ) are transparent. Talk about an oxymoron. Finally, the Europeans probably care more about torture than Americans do and they have heard all the stories about Bradley Manning and force fed prisoners at Guantanamo. Obama’s continuation of Bush’s security policies is like a knife in the back to the Europeans. I would not be surprised if they respect Putin more than him.

  2. fairmindedindependent June 20, 2013 at 9:35 pm #

    Chris Matthews said it was the suns fault or something. Give me a flipping break.

    • Pilgrim June 20, 2013 at 10:41 pm #

      I guess Chris would.

  3. Pilgrim June 20, 2013 at 10:54 pm #

    Obama likes to dither and “calibrate,” to use one of his favourite words, and hem and haw and paw the ground.

    The mystifying question is how one so good at speechifying in campaign mode is so lack-lustre ever since. I guess whatever fairy dust he managed to bedazzle the masses then has since fallen like scales from the eyes of his beholders.

  4. Solo June 22, 2013 at 11:31 am #

    President Obama’s poll numbers haven’t taken a dive, plummeted or anything of the sort! That CNN poll President Obama’s detractors have clung too is wrong just like pretty much everything CNN puts out! The President’s poll numbers are stable. http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/ticket/obama-job-approval-unchanged-views-economy-improve-200917651.html

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