US President Donald Trump has started his visit to Britain on Thursday. He was at his disruptive best. He was accompanied by the First Lady Melania Trump. The kind of diplomatic tsunami caused by him is evident by the sigh of relief everyone in Britain felt when he left for Scotland.
Trump gave an interview to The Sun where he spared none. He criticized British PM May for ignoring his advice on Brexit. He added that with her post-Brexit ties with EU she may probably kill the prospectus of a trade deal with the US. This was the first salvo.
Trump was all praise for former foreign minister Boris Johnson, who recently resigned to protest over the May’s plan, and said he would make “a great prime minister”.
Then Trump was very critical of London mayor Sadiq Khan for allowing protesters to raise a giant balloon depicting a baby Trump clad in diapers and said that he was doing a “terrible job’ on crime.
On Thursday Trump had a gala dinner at Blenheim Palace, the birthplace of Winston Churchill. PM May insisted that her Brexit plan “creates an opportunity to reach a free trade agreement that creates jobs and growth here in the UK and right across the United States”. He differed with her and said, “If they do a deal like that, we would be dealing with the European Union instead of dealing with the UK, so it will probably kill the deal”. Later that night he stayed at the residence of US ambassador. Then the US White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders later told reporters Trump was “thankful for the wonderful welcome” he received in Britain. “The President likes and respects Prime Minister May very much. As he said in his interview with The Sun she ‘is a very good person’ and he ‘never said anything bad about her’,” she said.
Trump viewed a joint military exercise at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst in Surrey. He was shielded from the public as the event was closed for media. He had an awkward encounter with May and tried to apologize her about what he said to The Sun. But May just shrugged it away saying “Don’t worry. It is only the press” Both of them later traveled to Chequers, the prime minister’s country retreat, 40 miles from London. They had one- on- one talks and a working lunch. They held a joint press conference. Later he tried to blame The Sun for omitting the good things he said about May. He further backtracked from his earlier stance and said regarding Brexit “whatever you do is OK with me. Just make sure we can trade together” He added that UK-US relationship as the “highest level of special”
Both US President and First Lady visited the Windsor Castle for an audience with the Queen. She shook hands with them and later Trump walked side-by-side with the Queen and inspected the Coldstream Guards. They had tea with the Queen.
The organizers were quite successful in shielding Trump from the protesters. The baby Trump balloon was released as part of the protest. The protesters were also very critical of the style of working of President Trump. Thus his Britain trip came to end on a better note.