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Another controversial trip for Obama

By Ben Pershing
Though his term in the White House has been relatively short, President Obama has already gotten accustomed to criticism from some quarters for his forays abroad. His April trip to Europe, his June speech to the Muslim world in Cairo and his July visit to Russia were all dismissed as too apologetic, too unassertive or too unproductive by conservatives. So what will the verdict be on his current jaunt to Asia?

Obama held a town hall meeting Monday with students in Shangai, and the jury is out on whether the gathering projected the importance of open and free debate, or the opposite. Obama met "with a carefully screened group of students at the marquee event of his Asia trip," the Washington Post writes, one that "illustrated the Chinese government's tight grip" on society. Though Obama spoke of the "universal rights" of "freedoms of expression and worship, of access to information and political participation," the Post adds, "Virtually every aspect of the event was staged, and it was unclear how many Chinese citizens saw the hour-long exchange, which was not broadcast on national television." The Wall Street Journal also noted that Obama's words "likely reached few Chinese," unlike those of Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, whose remarks were broadcast live when they visited the country.

Continue reading at Political Browser »

By Ben Pershing  |  November 16, 2009; 8:31 AM ET
Categories:  44 Native , The Rundown  
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Comments

"Another controversial trip for Obama"

You could do away with all the passive verbs in your story and report more accurately by rephrasing to that to: "GOP seeks to create controversy again over Obama's latest trip."

Posted by: nodebris | November 16, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

It is George Bush who should be apologizing to the whole world. I never heard Obama apologize for anything. What conservatives misinterpret as an apology is talking to other leaders as if their opinion matters. There was none of the braggadocio that his swaggering predecessor always used when he lectured the rest of the world.

Posted by: Gator-ron | November 16, 2009 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Well, you must say that it's easier for him to travel rather than face all the criticisms on the economy and the lack of jobs issue!

Posted by: SeniorVet | November 16, 2009 11:48 AM | Report abuse

Interesting how the media takes every action of the president and turns it into a controversy. There is no story here until the media makes it one...

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: parkerfl1 | November 16, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Though I was rarely impressed by President George W. Bush, I did appreciate his visit to an underground Christian church on one of his visits to China. Surely that wasn't widely broadcast in China, but it still let the leadership know that the USA was looking out for persecuted religious minorities in China.

Though I think Obama's overseas efforts have been appropriate, I wouldn't mind hearing a slightly stronger voice from our President ...

Posted by: chrisduckworth | November 16, 2009 10:10 AM | Report abuse

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