Pivotal Powers Congratulate (Or Threaten) Obama

Obama's going to have to reach across the aisle and work with the Republicans. But he's also going to have to reach across the oceans to work with...

Obama's going to have to reach across the aisle and work with the Republicans. But he's also going to have to reach across the oceans to work with the movers and shakers on the global scene. Terrorism, climate change, and the financial crisis are, after all, global problems. Below, we check the reactions of the world's pivotal powers to their new American colleague/rival.China: The Chinese people are big fans of Obama, according to an October poll from the state-run China Daily. But Hu Jintao's official reaction was pretty bland. No mentions of Taiwan or anything:"In the new historic era, I look forward to working together with you to continuously strengthen dialogue and exchanges between our two countries and enhance our mutual trust and cooperation on the basis of the three Sino-U.S. Joint Communiques, with a view to taking our constructive and cooperative relationship to a new high..."Sounds groovy.India: Political leaders in India (which views itself as the world's other "large democracy") were a little more demonstrative in their enthusiasm for Obama. Congress spokesman Abhishek Singhvi said:"Obama represents youthful energy, exuberant dynamism and a forward looking progressive mindset which is also the spirit animating India..."Russia: Dmitry Medvedev (pictured) sent Obama a congratulatory note. And then-holy shit!-threatened to deploy missiles if the U.S. bases a defense system in the Czech Republic and Poland. He seems likely to "test" Obama:"We do not have a problem with the American people... And we hope our partners in the new U.S. administration will make a choice in favor of comprehensive relations with Russia."He also blamed America for Russia's invasion of Georgia, saying:"Tskhinvali's tragedy is, among other things, the result of the arrogant course of the U.S. administration, which hates criticism and prefers unilateral decisions."Ironically, a calmer, more inclusive approach from Obama might be the worst thing for Medvedev. Bush's strategy of shooting his mouth off made it easy for Russia to turn its citizens against America and alienated our potential allies in Europe.Europe: In short, Europe is psyched. José Manuel Barroso, the European Commission President said:"The election of Senator Obama is an opportunity for a renewed politics of global engagement, with international institutions reformed to address effectively our global responsibilities."Excellent. Maybe they can help with Russia. And climate change. And the global financial crisis. And...and...Japan: The official reaction was short and sweet. The town of Obama, Japan, went completely crazy, of course.