April 9, 2009

White House: No bow to Saudi

Posted: 01:02 AM ET


The White House is denying that the president bowed to King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia at a G-20 meeting in London, a scene that drew criticism on the right and praise from some Arab outlets.

"It wasn't a bow. He grasped his hand with two hands, and he's taller than King Abdullah," said an Obama aide, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

The Washington Times called the alleged bow a  "shocking display of fealty to a foreign potentate" and said it violated centuries of American tradition of not deferring to royalty. The Weekly Standard, meanwhile, noted that American protocol apparently rules out bowing, or at least it reportedly did on the occasion of a Clinton "near-bow" to the emperor of Japan.

Interestingly, a columnist in the Saudi-backed Arabic paper Asharq Alawsat also took the gesture as a bow and appreciated the move.

(Read More/Politico)

Filed under: Larry King Live • Politics • President Obama

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Terry, TX   April 9th, 2009 8:17 am ET

It Was A was disgusting....and the White House spinners are Lying. It's on video. This was one of the many unpresidential things he's did while traveling. He didn't bow to the Queen of England and Michelle did not curtsy..and I don't believe they should have. So why bow to an Muslin Islamic Head of State? Well...he's making up for it....with celebrating Seder at the White House tonight....I guess he wants to be sure to give out the message of "Have a Happy Passover"...before he installs the Islamic Sharia Law in this country and Iran blows Israel off the face of the earth.

World citizen   April 9th, 2009 8:23 am ET

Was it a bow or not? It looks like a bow on the video. If it was, what a mistake!

Ted from Germany   April 9th, 2009 9:46 am ET

It was kind of a bow, but not a formal bow that is being used to greet someone in a higher position of the social scale. More like "I am happy to see you, old friend!"
Whatever it was is totally indifferent, President Obama has more respect in this world than any other President since John Kennedy. You do not commend respect by standing like a wooden post. Just leave him alone, he does a great job, but will make mistakes just like you and I!
Or would you care to have Bush another term?

Michael C. McHugh   April 9th, 2009 9:53 am ET

This is a only a "story" according to Lush Rimbaugh, Fox "News" and the Washington Times, etc,etc. They would attack Obama no matter what he did or didn't do; it doesn't matter to them, just so long as they can find something to attack him with every day. People like me know this, and it just goes in one ear and out the other. If Obama said "Once upon a time there were three bears", these people would say 'Obama hates bears". It's all nonsense.

Xavier   April 9th, 2009 1:08 pm ET

If that was a bow GW got on his knees lol!

Justice for the Righteous   April 9th, 2009 4:38 pm ET

Obama bow, White House lied. Do we get free oil...????

amb   April 9th, 2009 4:39 pm ET

Michael – I've noticed everything you have written shows you believe that Obama can do no wrong. Obama bowed to King Abdullah and nearly kissed his backside – he kisses up to the Muslim world whenever he can. I feel in his heart of heart is still a Muslim just as his father was. How can you not see that – you are blind!

Justice for the Righteous   April 9th, 2009 4:44 pm ET

Obama violated protocol. American presidents do not bow before foreign dignitaries, whether they are princes, kings, or emperors. Right-wing blogs went nuts over Obama's deep bow, but left-wing blogs and mainstream publications ignored the affront to American tradition. The New York Times made no mention at all of Obama's submissive posture, which was odd because, as one blogger noted, the paper used to consider such a gaffe "unthinkable

Judith   April 9th, 2009 9:46 pm ET

This is the least of our Worries here in the USA.I'm waiting for someone to say what kind of toilet paper or tooth paste they use.

Aynes54   April 11th, 2009 6:19 am ET

Will some of you at least admit that Mr. Gibbs was not honest when he was asked if Obama was bowing and he said emphatically "no". The principle here is if we see them dishonest with something as small as a bow, how can we trust them over the important things???I mean, why not just come out and say he bowed??? Transparent???

kevin taylor Hastings New Zealand   April 20th, 2009 7:21 pm ET

Un American MediaThe attempting to pull itself out of the worst self imposed economic disaster in its history. And at the same time begin to restore the country to its former respected place in the world. The people have elected a new president and by his utterances and actions is going about these major reconstructions brilliantly.A Man Born For His Time" HIstory will record this man as one of the greatest presidents ever. The worlds ablest statesmen and leaders recognise his ability, not only to lead his country back to greatness but provide leadership and inspiration accross the worlds nations.

living on an island in the pacific regularly watching american telivision for news and currebt affairs mostly c.n.n. and fox It is astonishing to listen to these self important commentators dumbing down and writing off the efforts of the new president. While freedom of speach must be maintained, the media must self regulate and adopt a surportive role lifting the nations spirits not heaping critisism on every effort he makes. America is fighting its greatest battle and needs the nation to get behind this inspiational leader. Kevin Taylor Hastings New Zealand

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