Video: No, Obama wasn't cleaning the floor when greeting Abdullah

While I don’t post a lot on Twitter myself, I do learn a few things by monitoring my feed. For those wondering why the media hasn’t reported at all on Barack Obama’s protocol-smashing deep-waisted bow to King Abdullah — besides the usual Cover Obama’s Behind impulse — a few people are suggesting that media outlets are taking the position that Obama was really picking something off the ground instead of bowing.

Where did they get idea? Certainly not from the video. I’ve highlighted the portion, and repeat it a couple of times to be clear:

Very clearly, throughout the bow, Obama’s right hand stays engaged with Abdullah’s. His left hand remains visibly at his side, and doesn’t once reach for the ground.

So where would they get the idea that President Obama assigned himself the task of cleaning the floor? I’d assume that Obama’s press office pushed that meme out hard yesterday when the video first came out, and they didn’t bother to check it. Considering Anderson Cooper’s long missive about the Obama’s brief head nod to Queen Elizabeth, the silence on this greeting seems astonishing.

National media — when will you report this? 2013?

But did it buy Obama any respect from Abdullah and the Saudis? Apparently not. Arab News, the recognized media mouthpiece for the Saudi royal family, dismisses Obama in an editorial today as false change:

The so-called new plan is nothing but Bush’s old wine in Obama’s new bottle. So much for the “Change We Can”! Looks like the pundits who mocked our boundless adulation for Obama and celebration of “change in Washington” were right after all. They were right when they insisted that whoever is in charge in Washington, the US foreign policy seldom changes. This is unfortunate considering the great expectations and hopes the new president’s talk of exploring a “new way forward” had spawned across the Muslim world.

I guess the next time, the Saudis expect a lower bow, and perhaps a kiss on the feet.