Obama’s Mr. Cool Act Wins Few Foreign Friends

Obama’s Mr. Cool Act Wins Few Foreign Friends

April 6th, 2010

Business Week

 Obama is too cool for school and for friends and allies

After 14 months in office, President Barack Obama is looking at a cold and friendless world.

That doesn’t seem to bother him one bit, because he’s the one who’s acting chilly.

His relations with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Afghan President Hamid Karzai are almost sub-zero. Obama didn’t mind hurting Spanish feelings when he canceled a summit in Madrid.

Even French President Nicolas Sarkozy — dubbed “l’Americain” by his compatriots — was put on hold for a home-cooked dinner until a week ago. Other Europeans can’t decide whether he’s dissing them.

It’s gotten to the point where there is a debate in the U.K. Parliament on whether to call off the so-called special relationship. The British took offense at Obama’s decision to move Winston Churchill’s bust out of the Oval Office. The more dramatic slight was his pitiful gift of a boxed set of 25 old American movies to Prime Minister Gordon Brown, who can’t even view them on a U.K. DVD player.

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