Uh oh: Obama, Sarkozy caught on open mic grumbling about Netanyahu?
posted at 9:08 pm on November 7, 2011 by Allahpundit
The bad news? This is an especially stupid distraction on the eve of the new UN report confirming western fears about Iran’s nuclear weaponization program. The good news? Our new Islamist allies in Libya will be thrilled.
According to a Monday report in the French website “Arret sur Images,” after facing reporters for a G20 press conference on Thursday, the two presidents retired to a private room, to further discuss the matters of the day…
The conversation then drifted to Netanyahu, at which time Sarkozy declared: “I cannot stand him. He is a liar.” According to the report, Obama replied: “You’re fed up with him, but I have to deal with him every day!”…
The communication faux pas went unnoticed for several minutes, during which the conversation between the two heads of state – which quickly reverted to other matters – was all but open to members the press, who were still in possession of headsets provided by the Elysée for the sake of simultaneous translation during the G20 press conference…
The surprising lack of coverage may be explained by a report alleging that reporters present at the event were requested to sign an agreement to keep mum on the subject of the embarrassing comments.
Here’s the original story at Arret sur Images. I’ve never heard of that site so I have no sense of how credible it is. (French readers, repondez s’il vous plait.) The idea of The One badmouthing Bibi is completely plausible, though. Remember when he allegedly humiliated Netanyahu at the White House at a meeting in 2010, and then when Netanyahu humiliated O right back with that lecture in the Oval Office back in May about Israel’s borders? There’s no love lost here, although electoral concerns (if nothing else) will keep Obama a very willing partner with Israel for the next year. Philip Klein asks a good question, though:
All the reporters at G20 ignored it except for obscure French website? Hot mic and no one recorded?
I can buy that no one recorded it, and I can buy that some reporters would go so far into the tank that they’d sign a nondisclosure statement, but surely someone in the room would have found a scoop this juicy too irresistible and would have leaked it. The exchange between O and Sarkozy supposedly happened on Thursday; it took four days for news to break about an explosive “hot mic” exchange between the presidents of the United States and France about the prime minister of Israel? C’mon.
Anyone know if Arret is trustworthy? And if so, I want to know which reporters were in the room and refused to report.