Douglas MacArthur, in his farewell speech, told America that “Old soldiers never die, they just fade away.” Were we that lucky with old presidents.
During President Donald Trump’s first trip abroad, the recently-departed tenant at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue will also be taking heading across the Atlantic — this time to Berlin, where he’ll be teaming up with his old pal, German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
According to The Washington Times, Merkel and Obama (quite a step down from Laurel and Hardy, if you ask me) will be appearing together Thursday at a forum called “Being Involved in Democracy: Taking on Responsibility Locally and Globally.”
While that sounds like the kind of book that Noam Chomsky would write the forward to, it’s actually part of an event by the Deutscher Evangelischer Kirchentag (German Protestant Church Conference) to celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. The event is being sponsored by the Obama Foundation.
“President Barack Obama’s attending the Kirchentag in Berlin, which will ring in the Reformation Summer, underlines the international character of our 500th-anniversary celebrations,” a statement on the event’s website by Bishop Heinrich Bedford-Strohm reads.
“The churches form a global civil society network of over two billion Christians. Together, as people of faith, we live from the firm hope for a better world. Anyone who is pious also has to be politically minded. I am looking forward to enthusiastic debates during the Reformation Summer 2017.”
This is somewhat ironic when you consider the fact that the president wasn’t exactly too keen on protecting the rights of Christians at home or abroad during his presidency.
Also ironic is the location of the event — Berlin’s iconic Brandenberg Gate. Back in 2008, then-Sen. Obama wished to speak there while he was on the campaign trail, but Merkel vetoed it, feeling it was unseemly for an individual to give a campaign speech in front of one of Germany’s most hallowed landmark.
What, pray tell, does Merkel think that the former president is doing now? This is a man who seems utterly thunderstruck that Americans decided not to take his endorsement of Hillary Clinton and pleas to vote Democrat last November as a sort of pronouncement from the chair.
So, instead of embracing tradition and fading into the background to give his successor room, he jets around the world telling us all how we really, really should have listened to him — even as our actual, elected president embarks on his first major world tour.
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