Collective horror is sweeping the press. The leaders of NATO were caught laughing at Donald Trump behind his back. Susan Delacourt wonders what it's all about:
Did you hear the one about the world leader behaving badly at the NATO summit?
In what truly is a sign of just how much Donald Trump has disrupted the rules of political diplomacy in three tumultuous years in office, the punchline to that joke is not Donald Trump.
Instead, the bad diplomatic behaviour award at this week's NATO summit is being given to the world leaders — including Canada's own Prime Minister Justin Trudeau — who made the mistake of reacting to the perennially outrageous, unpredictable U.S. president.
That's just how things seem to work around Trump — he yells, and those who whisper about him are deemed to be the problem.
In the United States, late night comedians are having a heyday doing the same. And, in Washington, he's being impeached. Did we really think that world leaders didn't mock Trump behind his back?
There is another way to see the conversation at Buckingham Palace — as a totally sane, normal reaction to a politician who breaks all the rules of standard political behaviour, both at home and on the world stage.
The snippets of conversation overheard from that cocktail encounter were not that much different from observations being made Tuesday night on CNN (granted, Trump's least favourite media outlet) when hosts such as Chris Cuomo remarked on the president's highly unusual and undiplomatic behaviour at the summit.
Diplomacy, of course, dictates that world leaders don't laugh at each other — unless, of course, you're Trump, who thought the funniest thing about the whole incident was the name he called Trudeau after hearing about the video.
"That was funny when I said that guy was two-faced," Trump said Wednesday.
This is, we'll remember, a bit of a repeat of what happened after the G-7 summit in Quebec in 2018, when Trump got annoyed at how Trudeau talked about him after their meeting. On that occasion, the president called the prime minister "weak" and "dishonest."
What did Trudeau do to incite Trump's wrath back then? He spoke out against U.S. tariffs against Canada — which is what you would expect a Canadian prime minister to do. But that story quickly became one about Trump taking offence, rather than one about what prompted Trudeau to make the remarks in the first place. Excuse the seasonal reference, but apparently this isn't like that scene in the Christmas film "Love Actually," when the British prime minister is lauded as a national hero for calling out the bully president.
Pompous asses should be laughed at -- pompous fools even more so.
Image: NATO TV/AFP via GETTY IMAGES