June 28th, 2008
11:08 AM ET
10 years ago

Obama plans trip to Europe and the Middle East

Sen. Obama plans to tour Europe and the Middle East this summer.

Sen. Obama plans to tour Europe and the Middle East this summer.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Sen. Barack Obama plans to visit Europe and the Middle East this summer, his campaign announced Saturday morning.

The senator from Illinois and presumptive Democratic presidential nominee will visit France, Germany, Israel, Jordan and Britain, his campaign says.

"This trip will be an important opportunity for me to assess the situation in countries that are critical to American national security, and to consult with some of our closest friends and allies about the common challenges we face," said Obama, in a statement released by his campaign.

"This will be an important opportunity to have an exchange of views with leaders in these countries about these and other issues that are critical to American national security - and global security - in the 21st century," he added.

Obama also intends to visit Iraq and Afghanistan this summer, he said in a phone interview with Radio Iowa. His campaign said no details would be announced in order to maintain "the highest levels of security."

But, he told Radio Iowa, "In Iraq, my goal is to talk to the Iraqi leadership about making political progress so that we can start phasing down our troops in Iraq, and obviously I want to congratulate the troops for the extraordinary work they've done in reducing violence there."

And, "in Afghanistan the situation, unfortunately, has not been improving," Obama told Radio Iowa. "On many measures, things have been getting a little bit worse so the key is to talk to our commanders on the ground and find out, what do we need to do to strengthen our efforts there? Our troops have performed magnificently, but we don't probably have enough troops there, and we've got to do a better job on the reconstruction side to build the infrastructure that's needed in that country to consolidate long-term gains."

On the Europe trip, Obama said, "with our European allies, I think what's important is not only encouraging their ongoing involvement and support in areas like Afghanistan and on the military side, but also to discuss a wide range of economic issues. There are certain issues like climate change that
can't be addressed without the participation of the Europeans as well. So that's going to be something that hopefully we'll be working on over a long period of time, but when it comes to nuclear proliferation, Iran - those are issues where we've got to act in concert with our allies."

The trips come as Obama tries to beef up his foreign policy credentials with voters.

In a recent CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll, 54 percent of Americans thought presumptive GOP presidential nominee John McCain would better handle foreign policy, 11 points ahead of Obama.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (215 Responses)
  1. kenneth bernstein

    GO OBAMA GO!!!!

    This man is a super star....

    He is gonna (and already is) kick McBush into the dirt Hee Hee Hee

    btw...So, McBush thinks Carter was a lousy president? Let's see, Carter was a president in the last century...like 1976-1980? That was like almost 30 years ago....So, who gives a sh-t ?
    What does he think about Bushy poo??? talk about a lousy president.
    personally I think McBush is a lousy wanna be president...Let's keep it that way

    Obama 2008 2012

    We love you presient Obama
    You are America's Savior


    June 28, 2008 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  2. Brett

    they wont like obama during his visit.

    Start in 1998, Bill clinton's time has been hurt the USA economy, It has been affected economy wayy before 9/11 hurts American... Thanks to Bush to make things dont down after 9/11... it's isnt easy. But we should blamed Clinton's time that they do nothing with many USA company moved to oversea for CHEAPEST labor.... unfair!

    June 28, 2008 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  3. Targar

    JB, I really don't think you have any education so just be quiet. Clinton is one of the best president in history.

    June 28, 2008 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  4. ANGIE

    i think its great he should go hes so respected and very much liked in other countries and besides he better start going now he will be doing much of that as potus!!!!

    June 28, 2008 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  5. Ken

    If Obama does not put Hillary on the ticket, all the trips in the world will not gt him elected. Obama needs to focus on things here in our country first and then look to other countries.

    Obama will not beat McCain in November unless he adds Hillary to the ticket as his VP.

    Obama/Clinton 2008

    June 28, 2008 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  6. Karen

    You go Barack!!! Take Hillary with you as your VP choice!!!! And I did not support her during the primaries but after yesterday the two of you could set the world on fire!!!! Such energy!!! AND we the American people need a real shot in the arm right and a lot of HOPE!!!! Unity was great!!! I'm a 64 year old white republican women from AZ and would NEVER think of voting for McCain. He is no good for AZ and will be NO good for the US!! He's just toooo old!!!!! We reach an age when we turn life over to our children. This was God's plan and somehow McCain can't quite get that through his head. He needs a nap most of the time!!!! Barack will bring such pride back to Americans and the world will love us again!!!! God bless you Barack!!!

    June 28, 2008 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  7. James , Houston, TX.

    DO You Mr. Bama plan to borrow Air Force One for G.W. as a Trial Run? Its like buying a New Car.
    However, You could have Access to Air Force Two. It is believed Laura, and or Dick Cheney may be finished with IT!

    June 28, 2008 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  8. Erica from GA

    I think its great that Sen.Obama go to Iraq now. He has clinched the nomination and its time for him to go see whats going on over there so he can discuss a stragety for withdrawal with the leaders on the ground.

    June 28, 2008 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  9. Brian Knoxville TN

    The war in Iraq is going so well, might as well go visit the Green Zone to get an accurate perspective. Funny what you can see in 2 square miles. Watch out for the mortars. I wouldn't be in such a hurry to visit Afghanistan (where the real war on terror is going on), we don't control anything over there. Succeeding, eh? What a joke, a tragic joke.

    June 28, 2008 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  10. Joe the Troll

    Yes, I agree with JB. Ten year olds today ONLY have oral sex because they think Bill Clinton is so cool. He's highly influential with that age group. Hannah Montana WISHES she could get the press he gets.

    As for Obama, I have to admit that I like the idea of a president that LISTENS. It's a skill that's been lacking for quite some time.

    June 28, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  11. Rob indetroit

    I agree with J .B . BILL CLINTON is a spoiled Two year old, who should embrace Barack Obama, instead of dissing him.

    June 28, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  12. li

    Romney the best one and we blow it...not Thats slick willie the founder NAFTA .
    WON because sold LIES HEALTCARE and do it again,people lost memory

    June 28, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  13. CB

    I think he is forced to do this becuase of McCain's globetrotting. So best get it over with in the summer.

    June 28, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  14. NOBAMA


    June 28, 2008 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  15. No to Clinton

    Bill Clinton lied to the American people "I did not have sex with that woman" No Clinton for VP, WH no place for Clintons.When they left the WH ALLOT of people had a LOW opinion of the Clintons, not just the Rupubs. Hillary does nothing for Obama & polls show he does not need her. If she were to run for Pres in in 12 or 16, Repubs would use all the old baggage plus new baggage & she would not be electable. Obama will have a chance to talk to these countries & get first hand info so it's going to be a good thing.

    June 28, 2008 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  16. Blaqwolf YO, Oh

    I've been waiting on him to start flying over some large bodies of water to interact with other nations.

    June 28, 2008 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  17. Michael Schultheiss

    I'm joyful that Barack Obama plans to visit Germany. Hopefully he'll deliver a speech. I'd be there – for sure.

    Go Barack, go!

    Michael (Munich/Germany)

    June 28, 2008 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  18. Walter

    BARACK HUSSEIN OBAMA on foreign policy...! That's scary...!!!!!!!!!!!!!...

    June 28, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  19. William, from Cali!

    "National Security", has been fine, since 9/11, so far...................................My,only "major concern" is..................... after 1/20/2009 and beyond.........................Can, the DemocRATS, handle that? We will see!...............Probably!

    June 28, 2008 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  20. Walt, Belton,TX

    Hope he takes somebody along with him that has a map. Surely the military won't be flying him all around wasting our tax payer money.

    June 28, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  21. Wolfgang, Germany

    We in Europe welcome Sen Obama with open arms and a sense of relief that such an outstanding politial figure would visit us. If Europeans could vote Obama would receive over 85% mindestens. On the issues of Foreign policy, Climate Change, Health Care, Iraq, etc , Obama is the more astute and effective President!

    He is a very great man.

    Germany says Obama 08!!!

    June 28, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  22. Monica for Obama in Indiana

    This is great, this way Obama will have his cabinet in place and they will be working , so on Jan 21, Members of his cabinet will be able to report to the American people on Day One.

    June 28, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  23. Karl Clark

    As an Obama Supporter, I request JB take a step back and see how wonderful the 90's panned out. You called Bill a scumbag. That's over the top. When will you view yourself in the mirror, remember all the trash you committed to any and everyone; then give yourself an appropriate label? Think about it.

    June 28, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  24. Kevin Brickley

    Is this comment relevant? One by-product of the dot-com boom I can live without is the irrational rambling of anonymous nut jobs (right wing or otherwise) who have zero command over their own written language, not to mention a grasp on reality.

    June 28, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  25. Ted

    Hey, Bill was a good president.

    June 28, 2008 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
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