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Berlin Speech: 200,000 for Obama in 2008; Only 6,000 Today

9:18 AM, Jun 19, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
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The White House pool report reveals that only 6,000 will be in attendance for Obama's Berlin speech today:

The stage for the president's speech is set up on the East side of the Brandenburg Gate, in the old East Berlin. The sun is pounding down and there are around 6,000 invited guests according to German authorities. There are bleachers set up either side of the square, with a big two storey riser facing the stage which has a row of bullet proof glass and 12 US, German and EU flags and the grand backdrop of the Gate. There is a large standing crowd between the bleachers.

Last time around, when Obama delivered a speech in Berlin in the 2008 presidential campaign, when he was still a senator, 200,000 folks came out to see him.

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UPDATE: The pool reporter says only 4,500 were present for Obama's speech:

Crowd count at the Brandenburg Gate speech was 4,500 according to Elmar Jakobs

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As the New York Times reports:

The last time President Obama paid a visit here, as a candidate in 2008, he was cheered on by 200,000 Germans eager to see the back of George W. Bush and, as one member of that crowd recalled Tuesday, “full of wholly unrealistic expectations of what kind of miracles Obama could work.”

When he arrived here on Tuesday evening ahead of a full day of talks — capped by a speech at the Brandenburg Gate — the reception was far more restrained.

Almost five years later, Germans have undergone “a brutal sobering up” with regard to Mr. Obama, said Ralf Fücks, who heads the board of the Heinrich Böll Foundation, a nonprofit political organization in Berlin. It is, he said, as overdone as the euphoria of 2008, but also a bit alarming.

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