April 3, 2009
Posted: 1504 GMT
This will be quick. I've been studying every stop of President Obama's Strasbourg/Baden Baden visits. It's stage two of his first international trip as president and if one thing is clear, it's that Mister Obama is still a rock star in Europe.
He held a town hall type meeting with an audience of mainly students from French and German universities. Holding a microphone, relaxed, in a setting reminiscent of the presidential campaign days, he was cheered and adored by thousands. Fans scrambled for autogrpahs on the german side of the border before his meeting with Angela Merkel.
Sure there are pressing issues: Afghanistan, an imminent rocket launch in North Korea, the global economic meltdown. But if anything comes out of Obama's trip so far it's the difference in the tone and the relationship between the United States and its allies. We'll be exploring that angle on the I-Desk today.
We'll be taking you live to Strasbourg, France and to Germany. Barack Obama had one-on-ones with the leaders of France and Germany and there will be a working dinner tonight with NATO heads of state on the German side of the border.
We'll also be discussing the March jobless numbers in the United States. They are dismal, but, importantly, they are not worse than expected. Markets are all about expectations.
It's like thinking a tornado would rip your house right out of its foundations and send it smashing into a building but coming home to find that only the windows were shattered and the roof shorn off. You'd feel ok about that, right? Ok, you'd feel relieved, at least.
We'll go live to New York to discuss the figures.
And make sure to tune into our live report with Kabul correspondent Atia Abawi. We'll discuss the NATO summit and I'll also be asking her about a controversial new law on sex within marriage, signed by President Hamid Karzai, that critics say legalizes spousal rape.
Also on tap: North Korea's imminent rocket launch and Madonna's adoption application rejected by a judge in Malawi.
Back to work for me. See you on TV,
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