Former President Barack Obama took a veiled shot at President Trump Wednesday, criticizing his successor’s oft-stated pitch for a massive border wall.
“In this new world we live in, we can’t isolate ourselves. We can’t hide behind a wall,” Obama said during a panel in Germany, alongside Chancellor Angela Merkel.
He also suggested that dire consequences can result from the decisions of leaders who think they’re always correct.
“If I become so convinced that I’m always right, the logical conclusion of that often ends up being great cruelty and great violence,” Obama said.
He did not mention Trump by name during the panel.
But his successor’s shadow hung heavy over the appearance: It coincided with Trump’s own first state trip to Europe during his presidency.
Trump is wrapping up a nine-day visit through the Middle East and Europe with a visit to NATO headquarters in Brussels Thursday, followed by a swing by the G-7 meetings in Sicily.
Obama, for his part, has remained largely quiet since leaving the White House in January, opting first for a leisurely vacation to the British Virgin Islands with his wife and Richard Branson, and, later, for time in the French Polynesian islands to work on his memoir.
While he was very critical of Trump during the 2016 campaign, Obama has been reluctant to respond to his successor statements and actions from the White House since he left office, choosing to react only once: When Trump accused Obama of ordering illegal wiretaps of Trump Tower.