Thursday, July 24, 2008

Obama Speaks to Germany on European Ties

Obama created a sensation in Berlin, and McCain lobs another dud.

“If we’re honest with each other, we know that sometimes, on both sides of the Atlantic, we have drifted apart and forgotten our shared destiny,” Mr. Obama said. “In Europe, the view that America is part of what has gone wrong in our world, rather than a force to help make it right, has become all too common. In America, there are voices that deride and deny the importance of Europe’s role in our security and our future.” Pausing for a moment, the Illinois Democrat added: “Both views miss the truth.”

“I come to Berlin as so many of my countrymen have come before,” Mr. Obama said, confronting the delicate issue of campaigning abroad. “Tonight, I speak to you not as a candidate for President, but as a citizen — a proud citizen of the United States, and a fellow citizen of the world.”

All nice rhetoric, and on the mark. Meantime, the other candidate let loose with his own eloquence.

On the other side of the Atlantic, where Mr. McCain campaigned in the nation’s midsection on Thursday, he criticized Mr. Obama for traveling to Germany to deliver the address. “I’d love to give a speech in Germany — a political speech or a speech that maybe the German people would be interested in,” he told a crowd in Ohio, “but I’d much prefer to do it as president of the United States rather than as a candidate.”

Just what does that mean? Well, that he'd like to win the election, for one.

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