The Bad Ally

The UK media is about out of patience with President Obama’s evident distaste for the British:

[T]he Prime Minister was forced to dash through the kitchens of the UN in New York to secure a few minutes “face time” with President Obama after five requests for a sit-down meeting were rejected by the White House.
What are we to make of this? This country has proved, through the bravery of men like Acting Sgt Lockett, America’s staunchest ally in Afghanistan. In return, the American President treats the British Prime Minister with casual contempt. The President’s graceless behaviour is unforgivable. As most members of the Cabinet would confirm, it’s not a barrel of laughs having to sit down for a chat with Gordon Brown. But that’s not the point. Mr Obama owes this country a great deal for its unflinching commitment to the American-led war in Afghanistan but seems incapable of acknowledging the fact. You might have thought that after the shambles of Mr Brown’s first visit to the Obama White House – when there was no joint press conference and the President’s “gift” to the Prime Minister was a boxed DVD set – lessons would have been learned. Apparently not. Admittedly, part of the problem was Downing Street’s over-anxiety to secure a face-to-face meeting for domestic political purposes but the White House should still have been more obliging. Mr Obama’s churlishness is fresh evidence that the US/UK special relationship is a one-way street.

Of course, neither Brown nor Tony Blair had this sort of problem prior to January 20. Maybe we should look into why our bilateral diplomacy was run so much better before that date.

2 thoughts on “The Bad Ally”

  1. Of course, the US has not recently released any mass murderers of British people, so the strains in the “special relationship” aren’t exactly a one way street, either. But Obama should be capable of understanding why it’s important to get past that and patch things up, and he doesn’t seem to be doing so.

Comments are closed.