Michelle Obama thinks being America’s First Lady is ‘hell’, Carla Bruni reveals today in a wildly indiscreet book. Miss Bruni divulges that Mrs Obama replied when asked about her position as the U.S. president’s wife:
‘Don’t ask! It’s hell. I can’t stand it!’
Loose Lips? The double-presidential faux pas, which saw French President Nicolas Sarkozy and US President Barack Obama accidently tell the world what they really think of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, caused a media frenzy on Tuesday, with many media outlets worldwide dubbing it "the juiciest thing since WikiLeaks."
French website "Arret sur Images" reported Monday that due to a technical glitch, the two presidents' microphones remained on after a G20 press conference held on Thursday.
Once the junket was over, the two retired to a private room, and Sarkozy was overheard as saying that he "could not stand" Netanyahu and that he believed him to be "a liar."
According to the report, Obama replied:
"You're fed up with him, but I have to deal with him every day!"
Reporters privy to the exchange were asked to sign a confidentiality agreement and withhold the report, but on Tuesday several French-speaking journalists, including ones form AP and Reuters confirmed that the exchange had indeed taken place.
Actually this isn't juicy, it's alarming. We found out what Sarkozy truly believes; Netanyahu is a liar. Obama didn't try to disuade Sarko from thinking this. Rather he piled. To place this in its proper diplomatic context, the open mic moment came right after France had voted yes for the Palestinians' full membership in UNESCO. It has been reported that France plans to vote present when the UN Security Council considers the Palestinian bid for full membership in the UN. Thankfully, the U.S has the power to veto Palestinian full membership. President Obama has been trying to persuade the Palestinians to drop their bid for full membership in the U.N. This vote which allowed the Palestinians to gain full membership in UNESCO is a large scale diplomatic failure by Obama, not that anyone is really pointing this out.
As for Obama having to deal with Netanyahu, some dealing he does. As was reported from Netanyahu's first visit to the Obama White House in March of 2010, Obama the Smooth presented Netanyahu with his list of his demands for Israel. Netanyahu said no. Obama responded:
“I’m going to the residential wing to have dinner with Michelle and the girls.”
Obama also refused the normal protocol of a joint photograph with the Israeli leader. Such a classy prez we've got. A little more than a year later Netanyahu was back in Washington. But while still on the plane heading towards Washington, Obama proposed Israel should just return to its pre-1967 borders as a place to begin negotiations with the Palestinians. Netanyahu waited until a joint presser to wipe the floor with Obama :
PRIME MINISTER NETANYAHU: Mr. President, first I want to thank you and the First Lady for the gracious hospitality that you've shown me, my wife, and our entire delegation. We have an enduring bond of friendship between our two countries, and I appreciate the opportunity to have this meeting with you after your important speech yesterday.
We share your hope and your vision for the spread of democracy in the Middle East. I appreciate the fact that you reaffirmed once again now, and in our conversation, and in actual deed the commitment to Israel's security. We value your efforts to advance the peace process.
This is something that we want to have accomplished. Israel wants peace. I want peace. What we all want is a peace that will be genuine, that will hold, that will endure. And I think that the - we both agree that a peace based on illusions will crash eventually on the rocks of Middle Eastern reality, and that the only peace that will endure is one that is based on reality, on unshakeable facts.
I think for there to be peace, the Palestinians will have to accept some basic realities. The first is that while Israel is prepared to make generous compromises for peace, it cannot go back to the 1967 lines - because these lines are indefensible; because they don't take into account certain changes that have taken place on the ground, demographic changes that have taken place over the last 44 years.
Remember that, before 1967, Israel was all of nine miles wide. It was half the width of the Washington Beltway. And these were not the boundaries of peace; they were the boundaries of repeated wars, because the attack on Israel was so attractive.
So we can't go back to those indefensible lines, and we're going to have to have a long-term military presence along the Jordan. I discussed this with the President and I think that we understand that Israel has certain security requirements that will have to come into place in any deal that we make.
The second is - echoes something the President just said, and that is that Israel cannot negotiate with a Palestinian government that is backed by Hamas. Hamas, as the President said, is a terrorist organization committed to Israel's destruction. It's fired thousands of rockets on our cities, on our children. It's recently fired an anti-tank rocket at a yellow school bus, killing a 16-year-old boy. And Hamas has just attacked you, Mr. President, and the United States for ridding the world of bin Laden.
So Israel obviously cannot be asked to negotiate with a government that is backed by the Palestinian version of al Qaeda.
I think President Abbas has a simple choice. He has to decide if he negotiates or keeps his pact with Hamas, or makes peace with Israel. And I can only express what I said to you just now, that I hope he makes the choice, the right choice, in choosing peace with Israel.
The third reality is that the Palestinian refugee problem will have to be resolved in the context of a Palestinian state, but certainly not in the borders of Israel.
The Arab attack in 1948 on Israel resulted in two refugee problems - Palestinian refugee problem and Jewish refugees, roughly the same number, who were expelled from Arab lands. Now, tiny Israel absorbed the Jewish refugees, but the vast Arab world refused to absorb the Palestinian refugees. Now, 63 years later, the Palestinians come to us and they say to Israel, accept the grandchildren, really, and the great grandchildren of these refugees, thereby wiping out Israel's future as a Jewish state.
So it's not going to happen. Everybody knows it's not going to happen. And I think it's time to tell the Palestinians forthrightly it's not going to happen. The Palestinian refugee problem has to be resolved. It can be resolved, and it will be resolved if the Palestinians choose to do so in a Palestinian state. So that's a real possibility. But it's not going to be resolved within the Jewish state.
The President and I discussed all these issues and I think we may have differences here and there, but I think there's an overall direction that we wish to work together to pursue a real, genuine peace between Israel and its Palestinian neighbors; a peace that is defensible.
Mr. President, you're the - you're the leader of a great people, the American people. And I'm the leader of a much smaller people, the -
PRESIDENT OBAMA: A great people.
PRIME MINISTER NETANYAHU: It's a great people, too. It's the ancient nation of Israel. And, you know, we've been around for almost 4,000 years. We've experienced struggle and suffering like no other people. We've gone through expulsions and pogroms and massacres and the murder of millions. But I can say that even at the dearth of - even at the nadir of the valley of death, we never lost hope and we never lost our dream of reestablishing a sovereign state in our ancient homeland, the land of Israel.
And now it falls on my shoulders as the Prime Minister of Israel, at a time of extraordinary instability and uncertainty in the Middle East, to work with you to fashion a peace that will ensure Israel's security and will not jeopardize its survival. I take this responsibility with pride but with great humility, because, as I told you in our conversation, we don't have a lot of margin for error. And because, Mr. President, history will not give the Jewish people another chance.
So in the coming days and weeks and months, I intend to work with you to seek a peace that will address our security concerns, seek a genuine recognition that we wish from our Palestinian neighbors to give a better future for Israel and for the entire region.
And I thank you for the opportunity to exchange our views and to work together for this common end. Thank you, Mr. President.
The day after that presser, Netanyahu addressed a joint session of Congress, spectacularly:
Prime Minister Netanyahu recevied a standing ovation. No wonder Obama can't stand dealing with him. What a miserable President and First Lady we have. They've got it so rough.
Meanwhile, where are the Republicans calling on Obama to apologize for his remarks?