View Full Version : Bush aims to patch up European relations

21-02-05, 02:17
AP - US President George W Bush has arrived in Brussels to begin five days of talks with European leaders in three countries to heal the rift that opened up in trans-Atlantic relations during his first term, notably over Iraq.

The president, his wife Laura and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice touched down in Air Force One at 9pm (0700 AEDT) at the Brussels airport on a cold, windy evening.

Bush made no comment on arrival, but boarded a motorcade that whisked him off to the heavily guarded residence of US Ambassador Tom Korologos in downtown Brussels, where he will spend three nights.

Earlier on Sunday, hundreds of demonstrators - mostly peace and anti-globalisation activists - protested against the Bush visit in the centre of Brussels.

Bush will meet with more than two dozen European leaders during a tour aimed at improving trans-Atlantic relations left bruised by discord over the Iraq war, global warming and how to handle Iran's nuclear ambitions.

Police have mounted an unprecedented security operation for the visit, deploying 2,500 officers - 1,000 more than usually deployed for the three or four summits that bring European Union leaders to the Belgian capital each year.

An alliance of 88 environmental, human rights, peace and other groups have planned protests near the US Embassy for Monday and near the EU headquarters on Tuesday. The Web site of the 'Stop Bush' alliance accused Bush of "crimes against humanity", saying he undermines international law and is an obstacle to the fight against global warming.

European leaders say they are keen to narrow the gap with Washington on Iraq and other contentious issues.

In his weekly radio address on Saturday, Bush said he doesn't believe the West is split between an "idealistic United States and a cynical Europe. ... America and Europe are the pillars of the free world".

"Leaders on both sides of the Atlantic understand that the hopes for peace in the world depend on the continued unity of free nations," he said. "We do not accept a false caricature that divides the Western world between an idealistic United States and a cynical Europe."

Iraq will be a top agenda item. The United States wants to see a larger international role in Iraq, particularly in training the country's military and police.

I would give my left arm to be a fly on the wall during those talks. The dinner with the American President and the French President! Lord, what fun that would be!! :D
Whats with the "cynical Europe " comment? Bush will soon learn a lot of names that America is being called by the Europeans.

21-02-05, 04:47
Hmm, hope it goes well.

21-02-05, 17:24
I have little to say when it comes to Bush.

tlr online
21-02-05, 19:22
Bush may soon familiarise himself with the phenomenon of trying to open one's eyes to "living with Bush in the real world." That being, 'banging one's head against a brick wall.'

Hopefully, Europe will send him packing!

21-02-05, 19:41
Ah, Brussels. A beautiful city. Sorry if I'm digressing from the point.

Let's hope Bush recognises the fact that America really can't do anything without the EU.

21-02-05, 19:44
Well, when I say that, I mean obviously international policies like stopping Iran's nuclear weapons programme and stuff.

Not that America couldn't do very well without Bush.

Don't get me started please. I'll just go and take my anger management class. http://www.tombraiderforums.com/images/smilies/smile.gif