Mar 6 2009
British Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, in a well thought out gift, gave Obama a pen set made from wood carving of an anti-slavery patrol ship, the HS Gannet from the 19th century. Barack Obama, in a last minute gift, gave Brown some American movie DVD’s, something Brown could have easily purchased anywhere.
If the meeting with Gordon Brown was meant to be an intentional snub to Great Britain or Gordon Brown himself by Barack Hussein Obama, it was a roaring success.
When Tony Blair came to Washington, he was met with British Embassy dinners, lavish star studded state dinners and joint press conferences for the world to see the camaraderie between the two strong allies. This time, Gordon Brown was met with 90 minutes up to 2 hours of working lunch and informal meetings in the Whitehouse and a meeting with Vice President Biden during his 2 day stay.
During this time the First Lady spent one hour with the First Lady of England who crossed the Atlantic for the visit. There were no state dinners. No informal family dinners with the two couples either. How pleasant for her.
Much more thought was put into the gift that Brown presented to Obama than was put into the planning and the meeting of the visit of Gordon Brown and his wife for their first visit to meet our new president.
GORDON Brown was left red-faced today after he was snubbed by new American president Barack Obama – at their first formal meeting.
The prime minister arrived in the US today expecting a full press conference in front of the world’s media to mark the event. But he touched down on American soil to be told by the White House that it would be a much more scaled down affair – in the Oval Office.
The embarrassment for Downing Street comes after Obama sent a bust of Sir Winston Churchill back to Britain – despite it enjoying pride of place in the Oval Office for nearly 10 years.
Barack Obama has sent bust of Sir Winston Churchill packing and pulse rates soaring among anxious British diplomats.
A bust of the former prime minister once voted the greatest Briton in history, which was loaned to George W Bush from the Government’s art collection after the September 11 attacks, has now been formally handed back.
The bronze by Sir Jacob Epstein, worth hundreds of thousands of pounds if it were ever sold on the open market, enjoyed pride of place in the Oval Office during President Bush’s tenure.
But when British officials offered to let Mr Obama to hang onto the bust for a further four years, the White House said: “Thanks, but no thanks.”
Notice the difference in the body language between allies George Bush and Tony Blair as compared with the stiff body language of B. Hussein Obama in his meeting with Gordon Brown.
The formal tone of yesterday’s meeting was a marked contrast to the jovial rapport enjoyed by George Bush and Tony Blair. The pair were often seen joking together. And during an address to Congress after 9/11, Mr Bush turned to Mr Blair and said: ‘Thanks for coming, friend.’
The Blairs also received a lavish welcome-from Bill Clinton, who ordered a 19-gun salute to mark their arrival in 1998. At a party in their honour, they were treated to performances from Sir Elton John and Stevie Wonder.
Gallingly for Gordon Brown, Mr Blair also beat him to meeting Barack Obama by attending a prayer breakfast last month.
And instead of the traditional joint press conference, the Prime Minister was instead given an impromptu media briefing in the Oval Office.
Within minutes of landing in a snowbound Washington on Monday night, Mr Brown’s aides had been made aware that their high expectations for the trip were in danger of exceeding the low-key welcome the Obama administration was prepared to offer.
Suggestions that the new President’s crowded diary made it impossible to give more time to Mr Brown rang hollow after it emerged that his other engagements included a routine speech to the Department for Interior and a meeting with the Boy Scouts of America.
To underscore the change from the informality of the Bush years, Mr Obama pointedly referred to Mr Brown throughout as ‘Prime Minister’, with just one reference to him as ‘Gordon’ at the end of the press talks.
Brits wonder, Was ‘Lady MacBeth’ behind Obama’s dissing of Gordon Brown?
What was the guy thinking? In researching my new book Welcome to Obamaland, I discovered that Obama’s judgment is pretty dreadful – but this? My favourite theory so far – suggested by presenter Greg Garrison – was that it was a move calculated to please his Lady Macbeth. Her broad-brush view of history associates Brits with the wicked white global hegemony responsible for the slave trade. Never mind that a white, Tory Englishman – William Wilberforce – brought the slave trade to an end. Judging by her record, Michelle does not make room for such subtle nuance.
Consider her notorious statement that: “For the first time in my adult life I am really proud of my country.” Consider her (till-recently suppressed) Princeton thesis, “Princeton Educated Blacks And The Black Community.” In it she writes: America was a nation founded on “crime and hatred”. Moreover, she stated that whites in America were “ineradicably racist”.
Most alarming is Michele Obama’s use of the terms “separationist” and “integrationist” when describing the views of black people. Mrs. Obama clearly identifies herself with a “separationist” view of race.