Obama: Europas Herausforderung

PARIS: Markieren das Jahr 2009 und der Beginn der Präsidentschaft von Barack Obama den Beginn einer neuen Ära in den transatlantischen Beziehungen? Oder werden – genährt von der Tiefe und Schwere der Wirtschaftskrise – die alten Trennungslinien fortbestehen? Wird die Krise beiderseits des Atlantiks zu einer nationalistischen, selbstsüchtigen Haltung führen, die die lang erwartete Wiederannäherung oder gar eine vollständige Aussöhnung verhindert?

Für eine Antwort ist es natürlich zu früh. Selbst wenn der linke Flügel der europäischen Linken – wie auch die „Liberalsten“ unter den Demokraten in den USA – Besorgnis äußert, dass Obama ein viel zu zentristisches Kabinett ausgewählt hat, wird eine klassische Form des Antiamerikanismus in Europa mit Sicherheit zurückgehen: Es ist sehr unwahrscheinlich, dass die Europäer auf die Straße gehen, um das „Wesen“ der Vereinigten Staaten – was Amerika ist ebenso sehr, wie was es tut – zu verurteilen, so wie sie es während der Bush-Ära und selbst der Clinton-Jahre taten. Amerikas Image in Europa hat sich seit dem 4. November grundlegend verändert, und der Stil von Obamas Diplomatie nach seinem Amtsantritt wird diesen Wandel vermutlich bekräftigen.

Doch im Bereich der transatlantischen Beziehungen ist es – wie global auch – unklug, zu viel von einem einzigen Menschen zu erwarten, egal, über welche herausragenden Qualitäten dieser verfügen mag. Grundlegende Probleme bleiben, und neue dürften dazukommen.

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