Sunday, June 08, 2008

Oliver Kamm: Obama's Foreign Policy: Unilateralism with a smiley face

Oliver Kamm giving some persepctive to Obama's closed door to Europe.
The problem with Obama is that he evinces little interest in the role of America's European allies. There is a paradox here. Obama makes much (as he did in a long essay in Foreign Affairs last year) of the need to "rebuild our ties to our allies in Europe and Asia and strengthen our partnerships throughout the Americas and Africa". Yet his approach to foreign policy shows scant regard for the opinions of European governments or the requirements of collective security. It is as if President Bush's gratuitously brusque unilateralism has been retained but with a smiley face.
More confirmation to Hans-Ulrich Klose's comment,
Obama, though, is less known. The best even the most dialled-in US experts in Berlin have managed is a handshake with the senator. He routinely denies requests from members of the German parliament to visit with him in Washington. Most of the information they have on Obama comes either from YouTube films or the papers. "Obama has no relationship with Europe whatsoever," said Hans-Ulrich Klose, the foreign policy spokesman for the center-left Social Democrats.

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