• Germany's news in English
 

'Does Germany trust Obama to lead the way?'

Published: 20 Jun 2013 13:01 GMT+02:00

The mood varied in the dailies. Conservative paper Die Welt wondered how far Chancellor Angela Merkel and Obama were in agreement on economic strategies. For Merkel, “austerity is a bitter conditio sine qua non. Obama does not like this, making it a real transatlantic disagreement.”

“America has become more foreign to us and this situation is the same the other way around. Europe has become more foreign to America,” the paper added.

Heavyweight daily the Süddeutsche Zeitung explored Germany's relationship with recent US leaders, and their equal dislike of both Obama and his predecessor George W. Bush.

“While they despised Bush, considering him to be a dumb cowboy, [the Germans] are no more at ease with Obama, the cool analyst, who kills terrorist suspects with drones, and whose secret service monitors the internet,” wrote the paper.

Meanwhile, said the paper, Europe longed for the respect of the US but was growing increasingly nervous as the superpower began to take charge on meatier world issues – such as “terrorism in Africa.”

“Obama had a message for these critics,” Süddeutsche Zeitung said. “The Wall is gone. But the story isn't over yet. The world is still a dangerous place.'”

Disappointment was thinly veiled in Berlin regional centre-left newspaper the Berliner Zeitung, which dismissed Obama's appearance as “especially embarrassing”.

While the president had the natural ability to excite a crowd about whatever he pleased, this time there were no specifics. “Perhaps the most important politician in the world has nothing planned. This is bad news,” wrote the paper.

The Tagesspiegel Berlin daily was more forgiving. “Although there is always a hint of pathos in Obama's speeches, he avoided it in excess while speaking on the eastern side of the Brandenburg Gate.”

Despite being peppered with emotive phrases like “the wall is history, now let's write a new chapter of history together,” these served more as “a sober call on the Western world to act; an appeal against the marriage of comfort with complacency.”

This, the paper said, was aimed at changing the minds of those who were beginning to question Obama's ability to act.

Regional newspaper the Kölner Stadt Anzeiger also expressed approval of the appearance, albeit rather half-heartedly. “The US president lived up to expectations,” it said, without revealing what those expectations could have been.

“His message was that it wasn't about spying on individuals, but about protecting them. A nice sentence that can mean everything or nothing. Like many of this president's soundbites,” wrote the paper.

Elsewhere in the regional press, the Stuttgarter Zeitung seemed impressed with Obama's rhetoric, calling the visit “a lesson for German election campaigners.”

The Südwest Presse, however, questioned the German public's faith in Obama. The visit was of great worth, it said, but “do the Germans trust the Nobel Peace Prize winner to lead the way to a beautiful new world?” it asked.

“Unfortunately the lasting impression is that he is a man of big promises and little progress,” the paper concluded.

DPA/The Local/jcw/kkf

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Satire and reality blur in parody party's strife
Martin Sonneborn. Photo: DPA

Satire and reality blur in parody party's strife

After winning a seat in the European Parliament last year on a commitment to 'milking Brussels,' satirical party Die Partei broke new ground. Now a 'Nazi Putsch' threatens to split the party asunder. READ  

Pelicans with wanderlust escape German zoo
These feathered fugitives took flight from the zoo to get a birds-eye view of the world. Photo: DPA.

Pelicans with wanderlust escape German zoo

A pair of pelicans with a serious case of wanderlust flew the coop from Osnabrück Zoo last week, only to find their way back days later. READ  

Fake plastic surgeon sentenced to 4 years
Christian B. sits in court where he was sentenced to four years and three months in prison for falsely presenting himself as a doctor. Photo: DPA.

Fake plastic surgeon sentenced to 4 years

A man who performed cosmetic surgery on more than 50 different patients using fake medical certificates was sentenced to four years and three months in prison on Monday. READ  

Doctor on trial after woman wakes in morgue
Photo: DPA

Doctor on trial after woman wakes in morgue

A doctor from North Rhine-Westphalia will face charges for negligence and bodily harm, authorities said on Tuesday – after accidentally sending a living woman to the morgue. READ  

'Straw hat' robbers leave flowers as calling card
Photo: DPA

'Straw hat' robbers leave flowers as calling card

Brandenburg police are searching for two men who held up a goldsmiths' shop, leaving a pistol at the scene - as well as a bunch of sunflowers. READ  

Small town family disappears without trace
Photo: Winsen and Harburg police.

Small town family disappears without trace

No one has seen husband and wife Sylvia and Marco Schulze or their daughter, 12-year-old Miriam, since Thursday. Helicopters and search dogs have failed to find any trace of the family, leading local media and police to wonder: Where are the Schulzes? READ  

German army takes over Mali mission
Ursula von der Leyen in Mali on Monday. Photo: DPA

German army takes over Mali mission

Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen visited Mali on Tuesday on the day that the Bundeswehr (German army) takes over control of the EU-training mission in the troubled west African state. READ  

Somalia suicide bomber was German: reports
The blast in Mogadishu killed 15 people. Photo: DPA

Somalia suicide bomber was German: reports

Information from security circles in Mogadishu suggests the suicide bomber who blew up a five-star hotel in the Somali capital on Sunday killing 15 people was a dual-national German from Bonn. READ  

Ex-minister: Merkel's Greece policy is 'fatal'
Former German vice-chancellor and foreign minister Joschka Fischer. Photo: DPA.

Ex-minister: Merkel's Greece policy is 'fatal'

Joschka Fischer, former German vice-chancellor and foreign minister between 1998 and 2005, unleashed an uncompromising attack on Chancellor Angela Merkel over her Greek policy in an article published by newpspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung on Monday. READ  

Two court cases to test criminal links to Isis
Photo: DPA

Two court cases to test criminal links to Isis

Islamic State members in Germany have turned to petty crime and selling stolen artifacts to fund the extremist group's war efforts, reports Der Westen. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Society
Six odd things Germans do in the summer
Sponsored Article
Outsourcing drives Apreel's Europe growth
Society
Police bust kinky Bavarian couple over painful love-making
Politics
Merkel brings Palestinian girl to tears
National
Could Merkel learn a lesson in love from this doppelganger?
Hamburg
Amateur archaeologist finds Nazi gold hoard
Travel
Why you should stay in Germany for the summer holidays
Sport
German press tell Schweinsteiger 'good riddance'
National
Hamburg gets a bouncing 100kg baby girl
Society
In North Germany, money sometimes DOES grow on trees
National
Hero mechanics stop Bavaria shooting spree
International
Denmark says that border controls are coming
National
Did hackers take control of German missile battery?
Politics
Munich gives gay pride green light
Business & Money
Berlin rent controls hit prices hard
National
Fighting to breastfeed in public without shame
Society
Ice cream for dogs 'gobbled up in one gulp'
Education
Are hotpants a feminist issue?
Rhineland
Lion cub reunited with mother
National
How the heatwave is cracking Germany's Autobahns
International
Why the French are more sympathetic to Greece than the Germans
Sponsored Article
Crans-Montana: International expat hub
Gallery
Police seize pensioner's WW2 heavy weapons haul
National
How to survive the Europe-wide heatwave
Sport
Is Schweini already out of the door at Bayern?
Politics
How German media shaped the Greece crisis
National
Car assembly robot crushes worker at Volkswagen
Rhineland
Weathermen red-faced over heatwave snow warning
Society
An eye for an eye? Mum protects child in playground with pepperspray
National
As it happened: Queen Elizabeth's final day in Germany
National
As it happened: Queen Elizabeth's second day in Germany
National
Queen Elizabeth II's first day in Germany - as it happened
National
Bus passengers tell fake racists where to get off
Politics
What's really in the Queen's handbag?
National
Germans say USA doesn't respect freedom
National
Yes, you CAN buy adult e-books before 10pm in Germany
VIDEO: Watch a 93-metre turbine crash to earth in slow motion
Gallery
Who's got a shot at the German Film Awards
Rhineland
Anger over 'child-free' beer garden
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

7,035
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd