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  • Barack Obama and Nicolas Sarkozy's Open Mic

    Last week's G20 meeting gave world leaders the opportunity to find common ground. For instance, President Obama and Nicolas Sarkozy found out that they both love to complain about Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

    "I cannot bear Netanyahu, he's a liar," Sarkozy told Obama, unaware that the microphones in their meeting room had been switched on, enabling reporters in a separate location to listen in to a simultaneous translation.

    "You're fed up with him, but I have to deal with him even more often than you," Obama replied, according to the French interpreter.

    While this has promised to be an embarrassment to both leaders, there's a variety of ways the two could have dismissed this gaffe. First of all, improv. The two men could have been doing an improvisational exercise for their Netanyahu roast. You know, the super secret one they were planning for that very night? Well, not anymore now that the stupid media ruined everything!

    If that didn't work, they could have flown Ashton Kutcher over to tell Netanyahu he'd just been punk'd. Heck, Kutcher probably has a direct portal from his home to Cannes. And after all, everyone knows that Obama is the George Clooney of world leaders.

    While both of these ideas are undeniably genius and completely foolproof, Obama and Sarkozy have decided to take the "no comment" route. Netanyahu also said mum, leaving Vice Premier Silvan Shalom to explain it this way…

    "Everyone talks about everyone. Sometimes even good friends say things about each other, certainly in such competitive professions," Shalom, a former foreign minister and rival of Netanyahu in the rightist Likud party, told Israel's Army Radio.

    "So you have to consider the main things. Is Obama a friend of Israel? Is Sarkozy a friend of Israel? Is their policy a consistent policy of support for Israel? The answer to all of these questions is affirmative and, as far as I'm concerned, that is what's important."

    *Swish* Perfect diplomatic save. With friends like these, there's no such thing as enemies.

    Photo by Pool/Getty Images News/Getty Images

    Tags: Barack Obama, Benjamin Netanyahu, G-20, Israel, Nicolas Sarkozy, Palestine
  • Barack Obama Is Not the Homecoming Queen at G-20

    Ain't no summit like the G-20 Summit cuz the G-20 Summit don't stop! Haha, not really, it does stop. But then it happens again and again!

    This year, it's happening in South Korea, the world's primary producer of cabbage farts. And while the kimchi will undoubtedly be delightful, President Obama will also likely find that he is not, in fact, the belle of this particular ball. Just this week, China was all, "Yeah, we're downgrading your credit rating because you're doing exactly what we do, i.e., manipulating the value of your own currency in order to produce domestic jobs." Oh noez!

    Even if there is no immediate rival to the United States as a monetary power, American officials acknowledge that Mr. Obama is going to have a far more difficult time winning any kind of consensus strategy out of the Group of 20 than he did during the first such meeting of his presidency, in London in 2009.

    "The world is more divided today than it was in London because nations not facing the prospect of a depression have that luxury," said Lawrence H. Summers, who leaves the White House next month after two years as the head of the National Economic Council, and as Mr. Obama’s top economic adviser. "Part of a return to normalcy is that nations more strongly and disparately assert their immediate interests."

    Thanks, Larry! That insight will do Obama really well when he's all alone and embarrassed in the corner while Brazil is totally slow-dancing too close with Ireland to Heart's "Alone."

    I hope he enjoys twiddling his thumbs under a crepe paper garland and making forced small talk with the kindly but annoying elderly chaperon. This is gonna be totes awksies.

    Tags: Barack Obama, China, Economy, G-20, Lawrence Summers, Money, South Korea
  • Caption Challenge: Barack Obama at G-20 Summit

    Leave your caption in the comments section of this post.

    Tags: Barack Obama, Caption Challenge, G-20, Games and Challenges