Yesterday, Barack Obama tried to insist that his hot-mic comments to Dmitri Medvedev asking for “space” on missile defense so that he could get re-elected and offer Russia “flexibility” were nothing more than business as usual. Obama said that he wasn’t “hiding the ball,” but shortly after making that statement, he seemed to be hiding something, at least from Medvedev and President Nursultan Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan:
As Mr. Obama gave reporters his explanation Tuesday, Mr. Medvedev and President Nursultan Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan stood at his side with an interpreter. As soon as Mr. Obama finished speaking, he began to walk out of the room, but Mr. Medvedev and Mr. Nazarbayev were clearly waiting for the interpreter to tell them what Mr. Obama had said.
Realizing that his counterparts hadn’t received the translation, Mr. Obama began to usher them out of the room anyway, saying “we’re going to leave” and that the other two world leaders would “get the translation later.”
What was the rush? Was Obama concerned that his fellow heads of state might offer some further information?
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