Countries:
none
Candidates:
Barack Obama, John McCain
Issues:
International Relations, Globalization, Government & Politics
 

In a blog post illustrating how middle America is sometimes disconnected with the rest of the country and the world, Dave Winer writes:

“But I've decided I don't care if they hate me or not. After all, they say that we as Americans shouldn't care whether people outside the United States hate us. So why should I care if they hate me?”

The question is: should the candidates care about the rest of the world’s perception of America ?

After the first presidential debate on national security and foreign relations, bloggers from around the world have spoken. Here is more of what transpired from the Francophone blogosphere:

François Clemenceau from France highlights the fact that the two candidates have very contrasted views on how to mend the relationship with the rest of the world (fr):

« McCain a évoqué pour la première fois devant un si vaste public son concept de Ligue des Démocraties sans préciser qu’il aimerait la voir remplacer les Nations Unies alors que c’est bien ce qui se cache derrière les inventeurs néoconservateurs de cette formule. Obama n’a pas évoqué les Nations Unies qui sentent un peu le souffre chez l’oncle Sam mais il parlé du monde global et des alliés en insistant sur la perte considérable de prestige et de crédibilité des Etats-Unis ces huit dernières années dans le monde. »

McCain evokes for the first time in front of a large audience his concept of a League of Democracy, without precising whether he'd like for that league to replace the United Nations which is the hidden agenda of neocons who created that concept. Obama did not mention the UN which is a sensitive subject in the US, but he spoke of US allies in the global world and the US critical loss of prestige and credibility in the past eight years.

Nathalie Mattheiem also sensed a major contrast of viewpoints on the US role in the world during the debate (fr):

“Les deux hommes représentent une approche différente du rôle des États-Unis dans le monde, mais ce n’est pas la préoccupation première des Américains en ces temps de crise économique »

The two candidates have a very different approach of the US role on the global scene. However, it does not matter much to Americans in this time of economic crisis.

She adds :

« John McCain, à force d’insister sur son expérience et sa familiarité avec le terrain international, a souligné involontairement le fait qu’il n’apparaît pas radicalement plus qualifié que son rival démocrate. Le léger mépris dont il ne se départit pas envers son rival s’en trouve d’autant moins justifié… surtout compte tenu de ses propres moments d’hésitation - en particulier sur le Pakistan. »

By insisting on his experience and familiarity with international politics, John McCain highlighted involuntarily that he is not really more qualified than his Democract opponent. The slight spite he showed towards his rival is even less justified when we saw his own hesitations about Pakistan.

Jerome Bernard, former French AFP journalist, was amused that nothing during the debate probably made more of an impact than Obama countering McCain’s bracelet story with his own story (fr). It might have been decisive in not losing too much ground in the patriotic votes.

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