Why is it that every time that a foreign leader visits the Bush Ranch, it is treated as if it is some sort of payback?
“Thank you for your leadership, friendship and your wise counsel. And welcome to Crawford Texas.” With those words of welcome and after taking a few questions, President George Bush set off to give Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi a tour of his beloved ranch.
The Italian prime minister is now one of a select gang of world leaders who have been given the full Texan treatment from President Bush in Crawford.
Others include Vladimir Putin of Russia, Crown Prince Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, John Howard of Australia and Jiang Zemin of China, who has since retired.
And among European counterparts, Mr Berlusconi can count himself with only Britain’s Tony Blair and Spain’s Jose Maria Aznar who have stayed at both Crawford and the Camp David retreat in Maryland.
Those three European leaders backed the war in Iraq and Mr Berlusconi’s visit is, at least in part, a chance for the White House to repay him by giving him a chance to show he has direct access to the world’s only superpower and has some diplomatic clout.
It seems like these articles are written to make Bush seem petty and small-minded. Perhaps Bush feels comfortable dealing with those people who have given him an opportunity- people who work with Bush, rather than basing their re-election campaign on anti-Americanism and Bush-bashing. That would seem to me to be a helluva lot more productive than wasting a weekend with Gerhard Schroder, Jean Chretien, or Jacques Chirac- and not the least bit petty.
I don’t know about you, but I could not see Chirac or Chretien at the ranch, much less in jeans. And riding in Bush’s pickup, ah, merci.
Emperor Misha I
The only way I could envision ChIRAQ at Crawford would be in the men’s room, handing out combs, cologne samples and breath mints.
no… Berlusconi no …