Published: Sun, November 11, 2018
Global | By Craig Ferguson

Trump visit to US cemetery in France canceled due to rain

Trump visit to US cemetery in France canceled due to rain

The American and French leaders, who have had somewhat of an up-and-down relationship, worked to project unity of opinion over whether Europe should create an army of its own.

Around 70 world leaders are gathering in Paris for events marking the Armistice that ended World War One, which was signed 100 years ago this Sunday.

Trump and Macron are schedule to have bilateral meeting during his stay in France.

World leaders gathered in Paris will lead global commemorations on Sunday to mark 100 years since the end of World War I at a time of growing nationalism and diplomatic tensions.

Instead, Trump sent his Chief of Staff General John Kelly and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Joe Dunford in his place to the site, which lies 80 kilometers (50 miles) northeast of Paris.

The dustup over European security, which threatened to divert attention from the weekend's somber remembrance ceremonies, was just the latest example of fallout from Trump's unpredictable brand of Twitter-assisted diplomacy.

Alan Seeger, the American poet that Macron lauded in his speech to the U.S. Congress previous year, already captured the seeds of reconciliation in 1916 when he wrote, as a soldier in the French Foreign Legion, that "I never took arms out of any hatred against Germany or the Germans, but purely out of love for France".

President Trump met with his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron on Saturday - a visit that began with a spat as dozens of leaders came together to commemorate the centennial anniversary of World War I's end and all that has since been built between nations in a multilateral world.

Trump began his visit to France with a Twitter insult aimed at French President Emmanuel Macron, writing that "perhaps Europe should first pay its fair share of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation".

Macron seemingly agreed with Trump's demands by saying that he wanted Europe to bear a greater share of the costs within the alliance.

The U.S. leader and his wife Melania are on their second visit to Paris since July 2017 when Trump was Macron's guest of honor at Bastille Day celebrations in Paris.

Macron said in an interview earlier this week that Europe needs to protect itself against "China, Russia and even the United States" in terms of cyberspace. While Republicans slightly expanded their majority in the U.S. Senate, they lost control of the U.S. House of Representatives to Democrats who may use their newfound power to launch investigations into Trump and stymie his agenda. "Whichever way we can do it the best and most efficient will be something that we both want".

Earlier Saturday, Turkey's President said that recordings related to Khashoggi's killing had been passed to some other countries -- including the United States and France.

Trump has made similar arguments, particularly in urging Nato's European members to increase its share of defence spending.

"I appreciate what you are saying about burden sharing".

European leaders have perceived Trump's demands for billions of additional dollars in defense spending from them as a threat for the United States to pull out of the almost 70-year-old alliance.

British Prime Minister Theresa May laid wreaths for the first and last British soldier killed in the fighting - the two were buried across one another near Mons in southern Belgium.

Macron greeted Trump with a handshake and pats on the arm as the American president arrived at the Elysee Palace in a cool drizzle.

Seated on gilded chairs, Macron placed his hand on Trump's knee and referred to him as "my friend", while Trump too sought to find common ground on an issue that has caused friction. "I've seen what they have planned, and I think it's going to be something very, very special", he said.

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