Barack Obama has a dark side

Barack Obama is giving his farewell speech today. He made history as the first black president of the United States - but he still disappointed many Americans. And he himself fears for his legacy.

His last speech as President

From Friedemann Diederichs

Chicago - The magical political rise of Barack Obama, 55, began with a speech - and ends with a speech. When the young senator outlined his dream of a “united America” beyond party lines at the 2004 Democratic Party conference in Boston, the delegates cheered him for minutes. Four years later, he moved to the White House with the "Hope and Change" motto. Today the first black president of the USA says goodbye to his supporters in his hometown of Chicago. He will want to capture what he has achieved over the past eight years. But at the appearance he is accompanied by the fear that Donald Trump could shatter his legacy. Like no other president, Obama has warned his successor. Finally, with the note that there is a difference between election campaigns and government work.

In a few years' time, Obama will be remembered primarily for his speeches, judged the Washington Post. He was a talented philosopher, but not a pragmatic realpolitician. However, for the past six years in office, Obama had to deal with a Congress in which the Republicans mainly blocked.

His greatest domestic political achievement, the “Obamacare” health reform, occurred in the first two years: 21 million citizens received health insurance for the first time. But Trump wants to dissolve Obama's favorite project in whole or in part. The current president is unlikely to mention the negative sides of “Obamacare” - such as the recently rising premiums - any more than the dark side of the labor market. Obama saved the US auto industry with massive grants, and the unemployment rate fell to 4.7 percent. But most of the new jobs are part-time - a consequence of "Obamacare", because companies cut full-time positions in order to avoid the obligation to pay contributions.

In terms of foreign policy, conflict-averse Obama will emphasize that he has withdrawn all US troops from Iraq. However, this also gave the IS area - and Iran more influence. The nuclear deal with Tehran is a diplomatic success for Obama - provided the mullahs continue to stick to it. Obama receives criticism for his Syria policy: he threatened Assad with a military attack, if he would use poison gas - then he gave up. Moscow also registered this weakness and adjusted its Syria and Ukraine policies. This meant that a possible restart with Moscow was no longer necessary. Obama never got warm with Putin, most recently he expelled Russian diplomats for alleged cyber attacks.

The killing of Osama bin Laden in 2011 is considered to be one of the greatest successes of his era. Even the silent killers in the air could not prevent the spread of IS.