February 4, 2010
Obama Was Right to Snub Europe
Adrian Hamilton, The Independent
President Obama doesn't do idle chat. When he speaks to foreign leaders – unlike his predecessor, George W Bush – he likes the conversation to have a purpose. Not for him the bonding exchange or the photo opportunity. Which is why he seems to prefer Angela Merkel to most other European leaders. And why he has so publicly turned down the EU's invitation to a summit in Madrid. Call it a snub if you like, but the simpler explanation is that he simply saw no point in it.
And he is right. Just what was the purpose of the summit? It was called by Spain's Jose Luis Zapatero largely with the aim of pre-empting the newly appointed full-time President of Europe, Herman von Rompuy, from doing the same.
Well, say Europe's defenders in excuse,...