The Bush reelection campaign must be ecstatic today. After failing to secure the endorsement of the two most prominent US newspapers - the New York Times and the Washington Post - Bush got the strong endorsement from the German newspaper with the largest national circulation: the sleazy tabloid Bildzeitung. Hugo Müller-Vogg lists10 reasons why Bush should be reelected. Some of the reasons are what you would expect: resolute action to fight Islamic terrorism, support for free trade which helps Germany's exports to the US. But a couple of reasons are just simply bizarre: Bush knows the Europeans do not have the capacity to support international military interventions.
Bush weiß, daß Europa und Deutschland gar nicht über die militärischen Kapazitäten verfügen, um sich über ihre bisherigen Auslandseinsätze hinaus nennenswert zu engagieren. Deshalb wird er diesen Beitrag auch nicht einfordern. Kerry aber würde genau das tun – und die ohnehin beschädigten deutsch-amerikanischen Beziehungen weiter belasten.
In other words, Kerry's multilateral approach to international crises would hurt Germany! Also strange is the comment that Kerry is simply less prepared than any other presidential candidate to assume office. What qualifications did Bush have when he ran in 2000?
The good folks at the BILDblog, who monitor the activities of Germany's most notorious tabloid, ask the question: "Who is this endorsement aimed at?" Maybe the 200,000 Americans living in Germany. BILDbLog is a is also amused that one reason put forward by Bild in its endorsement is that with Bush "America will continue to bear the financial and human (Blutzoll) burden for fighting the war on terror. In other words, it's better that Amis die than Germans.
Spiegel-Online also wrote about the Bild endorsement, noting that such endorsements are extremely rare in Germany, even though every community newspaper in the United States publishes endorsements for every political office. The speculation is that Bild is setting the tone for the German national election in 2006.
UPDATE: In an earlier posting we wrote about the Jewish vote in the US and how it was no longer monolithic. Today the Washington Post has a good follow up article on "The End of the 'Jewish Vote'". The thrust of the article is that Jews are as divided as the rest of the country, with the Orthodox religious vote aligned with Bush and his evangelical Christian base, and the liberal, or secular Jews voting democratic. This development is somewhat strange, given the strong anti-Semitic undercurrent in much evangelical literature.