Last week, you couldn’t turn on the television or get on the web without being subjected to some sort of coverage of the royal wedding. It was truly a global phenomenon, and the American fascination with it was remarkable. What other event would prompt 22.8 million viewers across the country to wake up at an ungodly hour to witness an event taking place thousands of miles away? (Worldwide viewership is estimated at a staggering 2 billion, reportedly making the ceremony the most-watched event in history.)
In addition to the media frenzy, there was much consternation and speculation about the deliberate omission of Barack and Michelle Obama from the guest list for the wedding. Explanations for the snub ranged from the fact that the wedding was not a state occasion to possible security concerns. But I can’t help but wonder if the reason for not inviting the Obamas runs much deeper than those reasons. After all, Barack Obama has presided over a stunning and shameful deterioration of the “special relationship” between the United States and the United Kingdom.
“Special relationship” is the term often used to describe American-British relations. Winston Churchill used it frequently, though the term itself goes back to the 19th century. The phrase is a tip of the hat to our nations’ shared heritage and intertwined history, as well as a nod to the unique military, diplomatic, and economic alliance between the two countries. From the World Wars to the Reagan-Thatcher friendship, to Britain’s support of the War on Terror, the “special relationship” has been an obvious one.
Unfortunately, President Obama has done severe damage to the “special relationship.”
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