Make no mistake, Barack Obama gave a fine speech in Berlin today, writes Shane Danielsen in the Guardian. But any comparisons to JFK can stop right there. His speech hit all the right notes but shaded more toward the ordinary than the memorable. The mood of the mostly young crowd "never quite tipped into hsyteria," says Danielsen, who notes that Obama is known for feeding off his audience. "Still, most people left happy."
"While workmanlike, if occasionally inspiring (the line about 'rejecting torture and standing for the rule of law' received a particularly loud ovation), the speech lacked the rhetorical flourishes, the vivid imagery or unmistakable passion that would have made it genuinely historic," writes Danielsen. "In that respect, it was, in the end, more Reagan than JFK."