The U.S. president noted that his time on Stockholm Streets had been short but ''s a gorgeous country." Obama continued, mentioning how far ahead Sweden is in environmental issues, on the road to creating a more sustainable society and admired "Sweden's ability to combine a healthy market economy with government programs in areas of healthcare or infrastructure..."
In reply to one of the Swedish journalist's questions about the U.S. surveillance programs President Obama also reassured Europeans that his government isn't sifting through their emails or eavesdropping on their telephone calls. He acknowledged that the programs haven't always worked as intended, saying "we had to tighten them up."
"I can give assurances to the publics in Europe and around the world that we're not going around snooping at people's emails or listening to their phone calls," Obama said at the news conference with Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt this afternoon from Stockholm, morning EST.

Stockholm preparing for Obama traffic circus
Will there be traffic chaos and long lines when Obama visits Stockholm? You bet. The U.S. president travels in such a way that all other travelers are affected, and his visit (September 4-5) will affect Stockholmers more than they might think. For instance, large parts of the inner city will be closed for traffic. Trafikverket (the Swedish Transport Agency) warns that there will be major disturbances in traffic during the visit, and people are advised to leave their vehicles at home, and travel collectively instead. However, Obama’s visit will also have an impact on public transportation. ”The impact on traffic is the greatest we’ve ever experienced,” says Kjell Lindgren, spokesperson for Stockholm Police to TT. Stockholm’s inner city and the roads to and from Arlanda airport are those most likely to be troubled. When Obama travels in his bullet-proof ”Cadillac One” in a motorcade to central Stockholm, the E4 will be closed off for traffic. Subway, commuter trains, and regular trains will also be stopped as the president approaches. Certain parts of the city will be closed off completly, such as the areas around Nybrokajen, Hamngatan, Centralen (Stockholm’s central station), the Old City, and the area around the royal palace. Cars parked in the roped off zones will be towed, and people can count on delays, according to warnings from Trafikverket and SL (Stockholm public transport). This includes air and ferry traffic. The reason for the increased security has to do with fear of assassination threats.


Obama's visit makes the headlines in other ways
Swedish media is fascinated with President Obama and the entourage he is bringing with him to Sweden. Of course Obama flies with Air Force One, but with him he also has his limousine, five helicopters, up to 40 cars, 29 transport airplanes, 250 Secret Service agents (who will work together with Swedish police to make sure the President is secure during his visit), around 300 advisors and press contacts, 150 other employees, six doctors (along with an insulated cool bag with blood in Obama’s blood group), and his own chefs who will prepare Obama’s food (in case someone tries to poison him).
But if Swedes are interested in the American president, what do Americans feel and think about Sweden? It depends much on what media you look at. Many U.S. newspapers have intensified their Sweden-watch due to the presidential visit. Says Elizabeth Walentin, a Swedish-American PR-consultant who worked inside the Obama-campaign: ”There are the extreme right wing media where there are repulsive stories about the Swedish state machinery, but in the bigger media many point to Sweden as a successful country when it comes to environmental technology and science. In general the image of Sweden is a positive one, but (journalists) are looking for cracks in the facade. The riots in Husby were big news even in the U.S.” The right-wing TV channel Fox News popular and controversial host Bill O’Reilly warns about Sweden’s tax-induced abortions and homosexual marriages. ”If people with traditional values won’t stand for what they believe in, we will end up like Sweden,” O’Reilly said back in January.