Wednesday, 5 November 2008

Newpapers : Views From Europe on Obama's Victory 5th November

America speaks; now for the real test. The Telegraph (en)
" ... For several weeks now, opinion pollsters have predicted this outcome; but it is no less extraordinary for all that. The lengthy queues of voters - the biggest turnout in an American election in 100 years - were testament to the galvanising effect of an exceptional campaign. By any standards, Mr Obama's victory is a historic moment for America. Within his 47-year lifetime, people of his skin colour were not allowed in bars or on buses in some states. To elect him head of state marks a rite of passage for his country, though it will truly come of age when the colour of the candidate no longer matters, only what he believes ..."

Obama culmina el sueño de cambio. El Pais (es)
" ... Obama has done it. Amid global expectation, Americans have accepted the challenge of change proposed by the Democratic candidate for the White House to give a clear victory in elections held this historic Tuesday, November 4, making him the first black president in the history of the country. There was little his Republican rival, John McCain, could do faced with the enthusiasm generated by the message of hope launched by the Democratic candidate during his campaign, one of the brightest in living memory ..."

EU hopes for more Europe-friendly US under Obama. Bruno Waterfield, The Telegraph (en)
" ... José Manuel Barroso, the European Commission President, said he hoped the Democrat President-elect would herald a new world order of international cooperation between the EU and US.
"This is a time for a renewed commitment between Europe and the United States of America," he said. "We need to change the current crisis into a new opportunity. We need a new deal for a new world." ..."

The upstart with a dream. Leonard Dole, The Independent (en)
" ... A little more than a year ago, he recalled, he was far behind in the polls, unable even to secure the endorsement of many black politicians who figured he could never beat Hillary Clinton. Many in the US political and media establishment had also concluded that his campaign was a flash in the pan. He was all but written off as a talented but fundamentally inexperienced upstart ...
... But the story of Barack Obama is one of being constantly underestimated by his opponents. From his earliest days as a community organiser on the south side of Chicago he revealed a talent for motivating people who thought they were powerless. As a young politician, hungry with thwarted ambition, his intellect, self-confidence, astonishing networking skills and a capacity to charm people into supporting him, turned him from a lowly Illinois state senator into a political superstar ...
... His election remains nevertheless a story of extraordinary talent and self-discipline, along with some fortunate timing. With a first name that rhymes with Iraq, a middle name of the former dictator of that country and a surname that even American television anchors confuse with Osama Bin Laden, the 47-year-old Chicago politician was always going to be a hard sell with America's so-called "low information" voters ...
... While she was flying an expensive "Hillacopter" around the state, Senator Obama and his team logged tens of thousands of miles persuading rural white Iowans to back him. Through word of mouth and the efforts of his devoted followers, he won a state that is 95 per cent white ...
... Condescending remarks he made about working class white voters "clinging to guns and religion" were a gift to his opponents, and even though he secured the Democratic nomination, he was polling 20 and 30 percentage points behind John McCain in must-win states like Ohio ...
... he said, "It shows you what one voice can do. One voice can change a room, and if a voice can change a room it can change a city, and if it can change a city, it can change a state, and if it can change a state it can change a nation, and if it can change a nation, it can change the world." ..."

Veterans fall by wayside as Republicans suffer huge US election losses. Tim Reid and Jenny Booth, The Times (en)
" ... An unpopular war in Iraq, a stricken economy — and various sexual and corruption scandals within Republican ranks — have dealt them the harshest of verdicts from voters across the country. Republicans in once reliably Republican suburban districts suffered particularly badly.
One of the Republican winners of the night — away from Capitol Hill — is perhaps Sarah Palin, the running-mate of John McCain. Despite her controversial role in the campaign and fears that she was viewed as a drag on the Republican ticket among independents, she has emerged as a popular figure among the culturally conservative base of the party. Many believe that she harbours plans to run for president in 2012 ..."

Analysis: Barack Obama's victory is head-spinning stuff. Gerard Baker, The Times (en)
" ... The American people yesterday demonstrated once again their unique capacity for self-renewal by electing the first black man as head of state, not much more than a generation after the country’s African-Americans were accorded full civil rights ...
... The country regarded loftily by many Europeans as hopelessly racist and irredeemably right wing has voted to be ruled by a black man, at the head of a party committed to economic redistribution and a foreign policy rooted in peaceful diplomatic engagement ...
... The country faces challenges on a scale no incoming president has had to tackle since Ronald Reagan was elected in 1980. The economy is in a recession likely to be as deep as the deepest in the last 50 years ..."

1 comment:

The Angry American said...

America is a funny place; we are not a rational people, we act on emotion, we're gullible, and we frequently think of ourselves as being much much better than we actually are. That being said, we are a people who genuinely want to do good in the world. However misguided our efforts may be, however deceptive and manipulative Americans in power may be, as a people, we act in good faith. We believe what we do is right, even if it isn't, and we use our wobbly moral compass as our guide. But never have I been a prouder American! http://angryamerican.cafebabel.com/en/post/2008/11/06/Never-have-I-been-prouder-to-be-an-American