Global prosperity depends upon it. And our status as global superpower — something that America did not seek and only reluctantly accepted — is unique in that it has not been achieved via conquest and exploitation, as was the case for empires of old, but through consensual alliances. So it should come as little surprise that many people around the world don’t understand the United States, and why their views on the American election could be so dramatically off-kilter when compared to the people actually voting in it. Here in Berlin, where Obama took the unprecedented step in 2008 of addressing a foreign crowd while in the midst of a presidential campaign, there is a uniformity of opinion on the presidential race that is, frankly, creepy: Gallup International found that 97% of Germans support Obama’s re-election. Most Germans cannot fathom how any sensible person could vote Republican.