Skip to comments.Smart Power: Obama Repeatedly Botches Dignitaries' Names on Foreign Trip
Posted on 11/19/2012 7:53:06 PM PST by Kaslin
President "Smart Power" at work. Oops:
As Obama stood next to the world's most recognized democracy icon, he mispronounced her name repeatedly. Ever gracious, Suu Kyi did not correct her American guest for calling her Aung YAN Suu Kyi multiple times during his statement to reporters after their meeting. Proper pronunciation for the Nobel laureate's name is Ahng Sahn Soo Chee. The meeting came after Obama met with Myanmar's reformist new President Thein Sein - a name he also botched. As the two addressed the media, Obama called his counterpart "President Sein," an awkward, slightly affectionate reference that would make most Burmese cringe. Note to presidential advisers: For future rounds of diplomacy, the president of Myanmar is President Thein Sein - on first and second reference.
These foibles were mentioned in the 20th paragraph of an Associated Press story entitled, "Obama Draws Crowd in Yangon." Many of the preceding grafs were devoted to quoting adoring comments from Burmese citizens. I wonder if these "cringe" worthy gaffes would have been relegated to afterthought status had they been committed by Obama's predecessor -- who, as we've all been endlessly informed, was "stupid." By the way, these name snafus weren't Obama's only errors in his public appearances today. The Weekly Standard notes that he identified the host nation as "Myanmar," which is the designation preferred by the nation's military junta (which has since ceded power to a "nominally civilian government"):
Obama used the word "Myanmar," the preferred terminology of the former military government and currently nominally civilian government, in a spray following the bilat, rather than use "Burma," the former name of the country, and the one preferred by Aung San Suu Kyi as well as the name the U.S. uses. "I've shared with him the fact that I recognize this is just the first steps on what will be a long journey," Obama told reporters, with Thein Sein at his side. "But we think a process of democratic and economic reform here in Myanmar that has been begun by the president is one that can lead to incredible development opportunities.
The White House says Obama bucked US policy and employed the military junta's preferred term as a "diplomatic courtesy." Obama extended a similar courtesy to another undeserving actor in the recent past, angering our closest ally while he was at it. Here's video of today's authoritarian accommodation, via Allahpundit:
Obama: Myanmar Visit About Sustaining Momentum
I wonder what Suu Kyi was thinking as she heard the president mispronounce her name and hail her nation by the name imposed by the illegitimate government that imprisoned her
He's a moron along with the 60 million that allegedly voted for him.
Maobama doesn’t pronounce ‘Navy Corpsman’ right — he didn’t have a hope in hell of getting her name right. And what an ass for calling it “Myanmar.”
What a complete dumbass.
Well, what do you expect.
Blame the US news media for lying to us about his incompetence. I hate the m^%@#f&*^$rs.
I am not sure that Joe knows where Joe is.
Yeah, but he's much more malevolent. Kewl.
I agree with you, it's deliberate. He's waaaaay into personal nastiness. Remember his giving McCain the not-so-subtle bird during the debates? His nasty sniling at Romney during the second debate this year? The frequent displays of open contempt?
When Biden did that with Paul Ryan, I had an impression it was coached, that Joe's handlers asked him to do that. ("Go to the body, Joe, go to the ribs!")
When Obama does it, it's character.
Julius Caesar did it a lot, too, sneering and putting people down -- you can see these guys coming, if you know what to look for. Human nature wasn't invented last week.
Just his way of letting her know, "Look, it's nice that you earned a Nobel Prize, honey, but don't let it go to your head. There's only one superstar around here."
Same message for Hillary: "Get over yourself, Blondie. I'm The Won. Now stay in the car, b*tch!"
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