The contrast between the chancellor and POTUS could not be greater
TO APPRECIATE how shocking President Donald Trump is to modern German sensibilities, consider the “America First!” slogan that so cheers his supporters. Then ponder how Germans—and indeed voters across Europe—would react if an avowed law-and-order nationalist were to seek the office of Bundeskanzler with the slogan: “Germany First!” Several issues divided Mr Trump and Chancellor Angela Merkel at their first meeting in the White House on March 17th. At an often awkward press conference in the East Room, the two leaders politely disagreed on everything from immigration to free trade and the value of seeking multinational agreements. Their comportment could hardly have been more different. Mrs Merkel was every inch the cool, reserved physicist-by-training, at moments giving her American host the icy stare of a Mother Superior told a dirty joke. Mr Trump was dyspeptic, defensive and visibly irritated by press questions about his latest controversial tweets.