"There is room for the two of us," he said, expecting his enthusiastic embrace of American values, which carries political risks at home, to pay dividends in Washington.
Let's do a quick check on how America's relations with the world have improved since Obama:
France - Ignored. Ignored! You may dislike a Frog, but you may not ignore him. Amour propre and all that; Obama should understand. Hear what the French say about US policy towards Iran:
singes mangeurs de fromage
UK - Special relationship no more. Churchill bust returned immediately. DVD of Hollywood movies doesn't work. British military heroism in Afghanistan counts the same as that of US military heroism in the Administration's reckoning. That may not be a good thing.
Canada - Stephen Harper, Uncle Sam needs you. Please invade.
Czech Republic, Poland - Small far away countries of which we know little. Call them at midnight to abandon land-based missile defence.
Flyover America - Far away country of which we know little.
Italy - Run by a bogeyman. Don't shake his hand.
Iranian democrats facing torture and murder- Don't meddle.
Honduran democrats - Meddle.
Israel - Yes, Israel. We need to talk about Israel.
Ok, I'm being flippant, but truth is flippanter than fiction. The flipped finger, the smirk, the absent handshakes, the body language, the insulting gifts...all the graceless details point the same way; the longer a country has been allied to the USA, the less the Obamans like that country.
But look on the bright side. The USA is much, much closer to Ghadaffy, Chavez, Castro, the 12th Imamists in Iran, the Sudanese terrorist government, the Nobel Peace Prize committee, the UN.
Reality is beyond satire. Americans who still support Obama because he's charming or because he's black or because he's not George Bush (who of course had excellent personal relations with Blair, Sarkozy, Berlusconi, Harper and America's traditional allies), or because he's improved America's standing in the world, those Americans don't need therapy, they need a metaphorical slap round the head. If history is a guide that's what they'll get, but it won't be so metaphorical.
As Obama dithers about Afghanistan let me cite a finer Hamlet:
It is not nor it will not come to good.