President Obama returns to Berlin today to deliver a speech at the Brandenburg Gate, five years after a speech by then-candidate Obama drew more than 200,000 people (and made its way into a negative ad from Arizona Sen. John McCain).
To see how big a difference five years makes, check out the divergent covers of Der Spiegel, the influential weekly German magazine.
First, the cover that greeted Obama in 2008 (translation: “Germany meets the SuperStar” — a play on Germany’s American Idol-esque show “Deutschland sucht den Superstar”)
And now, the cover Der Spiegel released last week (translation: “The Lost Friend”):
Even though Obama may no longer be a “SuperStar,” polling suggests he’s still got plenty of goodwill in Germany. A new Pew Research Center poll shows 88 percent of Germans trust Obama to do the right thing when it comes to world affairs, and nearly nine in 10 wanted him to defeat Mitt Romney last year.
But while people still trust Obama, they don’t think he’s lived up to the hype on some key issues — particularly when it comes to climate change and drone strikes. A 2012 Pew poll showed 59 percent of Germans oppose U.S. drone policy, while 73 percent say Obama has not pushed hard enough on climate change.