Europe loses trust in Obama

One of the allies’ problems in dealing with the president, according to the official, is that Mr. Obama “does not do consultation, and he doesn’t do discussion with allies. He reports, and he describes his analytical process.”

This was in remarkable contrast to the public assertions in Geneva of total solidarity among the nations of the West—France, Britain, Germany and the U.S.—pressing for an end to Iran’s development of nukes.

But there is a striking public side to the concerns about Mr. Obama.

In ” Angela Merkel : The Chancellor and Her World,” a biography by veteran journalist Stefan Kornelius that was published in Germany in July, Mrs. Merkel is described as regarding the president as inscrutable. According to the book, the chancellor has exchanged expressions of discomfort with Nicolas Sarkozy and Gordon Brown about why Mr. Obama is “so peculiar, so unapproachable, so lacking in warmth” (my translation).