Report: Obama won't speak in front of Brandenburg Gate

The presumptive Democratic nominee's desire to speak in front of the Berlin landmark had sparked some controversy; he'll reportedly appear elsewhere in the city instead.

Published July 18, 2008 2:31PM (EDT)

German media is reporting that Barack Obama's campaign has scrapped plans to speak in front of Berlin's historic Brandenburg Gate. The site had been the location for speeches by Presidents Kennedy and Reagan, but German Chancellor Angela Merkel reportedly objected to its use in what she felt was a campaign event.

Instead, Obama will speak in front of the Victory Column, another Berlin landmark that, according to Bloomberg News, "celebrates Prussia's victories over Denmark, Austria and France in the late 19th century." Bloomberg also notes that the Brandenburg Gate will still be visible in the distance.

I'd say that this might temper some of the phony outrage coming from the right over Obama's trip, but given Charles Krauthammer's latest column, in which he asked, "[W]hat exactly has he done in his lifetime to merit appropriating the Brandenburg Gate as a campaign prop?" I don't hold out much hope for that happening.

By Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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