The Obamas have thrown nothing less than a state dinner for Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel and her husband. It was their first for a European leader and is being seen as a sign of how important Washington regards Europe’s economic power house.
Disagreements over Libya and Berlin’s reluctance to back bailouts for the EU’s troubled economies were smoothed over earlier in the day. President Barack Obama has pledged US financial support via the IMF to help prevent a Greek debt defaulting tragedy.
And, despite any differing points of view, Merkel was presented with the Presidential Medal of Freedom at the lavish dinner. The award is the nation’s top civilian honour. Previous recipients include former South African president Nelson Mandela.