President Obama isn’t traveling abroad to commemorate the fall of the Berlin Wall 20 years ago today.
Of course not. There’s nothing in it for his Chicago cronies.
Also: There’s nothing for America to apologize for there today.
Guess which U.S. celebrity is in Germany to mark the anniversary? David Haselhoff.
When David Haselhoff is doing a better job of representing America than its own commander-in-chief, you know you are in trouble.
Der Spiegel headline: “Barack is Too Busy.”
World leaders in attendance:
Chancellor Angela Merkel called it the “happiest day in German history.” French President Nicolas Sarkozy drove all the way from Paris to witness it, and Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said it helped build trust.
World leaders are gathering in the German capital today to mark the fall of the Berlin Wall 20 years ago, an event that precipitated the collapse of communism across eastern Europe, the end of the Cold War and led to German reunification within less than a year.
“This day changed the lives of many people, mine included,” Merkel, who grew up in East Germany, said in a video message to the nation posted on the Chancellery Web site two days ago.
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are among those who will be at the Brandenburg Gate, which once loomed over the barbed-wire barrier that divided East and West Berlin for 28 years until the night of Nov. 9, 1989.
Merkel and the representatives of the four powers that controlled Berlin from the end of World War II until then — Britain, France, the U.S. and Russia — will symbolically walk through the gate at the climax of the “Fest der Freiheit,” or Freedom Festival.
“The wall that had imprisoned half a city, half a country, half a continent, half a world for nearly a third of a century was swept away by the greatest force of all: the unbreakable spirit of men and women who dared to dream,” Brown will say in a speech tonight, according to excerpts e-mailed by his office.
The party will feature 1,000 giant dominoes made to look like Wall segments lining a 1.5 kilometer (0.9 mile) stretch of the original. Lech Walesa, leader of the Solidarity movement who went on to become Polish president, is due to topple the first domino, setting off a chain across the city.
CSM has a moving timeline of the events that led to the fall of the wall.
Thank you, Ronald Reagan:
Here’s an excellent video tribute from CEI. Watch this one with your kids: