Thursday, November 4, 2010

Results cheered in China and Israel, rued in Russia

From The Wall Street Journal on Nov. 3:
Global observers broadly concurred Wednesday that Republicans' midterm election gains would plunge President Barack Obama deep into a domestic political fracas—a looming distraction that cheered China and parts of Israel, disheartened much of Asia and Russia and raised little response in war-torn Iraq and Afghanistan.

The results contrasted starkly with the 2008 U.S. presidential election, which elevated the first African-American to the White House and was viewed from the U.K. and Germany to Africa as a watershed political moment.

Republicans' recapture of the House "confirmed that Obama's election wasn't the deeply transformative moment in American politics that many Europeans hoped it would be," said Thomas Klau of the European Council on Foreign Relations in Paris.

The question internationally was whether the prospect of fresh domestic battles would affect international U.S. initiatives such as shoring up ties with Asian nations and attempting to "reset" relations with Russia.


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