Sarkozy's visit to Bush: fast track for world leader media status for Sarko and chicken soup for Bush

From Spiegel

Hot dogs instead of lobster and hamburgers rather than swordfish: French President Nicolas Sarkozy's blitz visit to the Bush family compound in Kennebunkport was anything but a culinary summit. Politically, it was all show.
...Although he does not speak English fluently, and although Bush does not speak French at all ("I can barely speak English," the US president quipped), the visit was meant to emphasize one thing more than anything else: that the physically unimposing Sarkozy is used to dealing with the world's powerful in a completely relaxed way.

...Hamburger diplomacy at the lunchtime barbeque organized by the Bush family was just the right thing for hyperactive Sarkozy (who jetted across the Atlantic earlier to attend the funeral of Cardinal Jean-Marie Lustiger). And since neither Tony Blair from Britain nor Silvio Berlusconi from Italy nor José Maria Aznar from Spain is still in office, Sarkozy used the opportunity to sharpen his profile as old Europe's allied leader.

... It was chicken soup for Bush's soul. A solid 65 percent of US citizens now take a negative view of their president. His international ratings are similarly devastating: According to one poll, citizens in 42 out of 47 countries believe Washington is primarily pursuing its own interests when it claims to be promoting democracy. The Bush administration's power politics are being criticized the world over. That makes the friendship with Sarkozy all the more satisfying...

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Since March 29th 2006