The potential for surprises

Poor Angela Merkel. She has to go visit Trump on Tuesday. Yuck. I hope he doesn’t try to hold her hand.

German officials say the detail-oriented Merkel, 62, has been preparing assiduously for her trip to Washington.

She has watched Trump’s speeches and [pored] over his interviews, including a lengthy Q&A with Playboy magazine from 1990 in which he floats many of the controversial ideas he is now trying to implement as president, they say.

Members of her entourage have also analyzed Trump’s encounters with other leaders – including Britain’s Theresa May, Japan’s Shinzo Abe and Canada’s Justin Trudeau – and have had exchanges with some of their counterparts on how to handle the unpredictable former reality-TV star, the officials added.

“We have to be prepared for the fact that he does not like to listen for long, that he prefers clear positions and does not want to delve into details,” said one senior German official.

Sigh. In other words, they have to be prepared for the fact that he’s a giant stupid baby, who refuses to do the most basic tasks that the job requires. He has no attention span, he’s lazy, and he wants everything made simple and easy as if it were a toddler’s dinner cut up into itty bitty bites. It’s so shaming.

One of the biggest concerns in the chancellor’s camp before the visit is the potential for surprises.

Japan’s Abe had an awkward 19-second handshake with Trump, while May was criticized in some sections of the British media for holding hands with Trump during a stroll at the White House, apparently after he reached out to steady himself.

When Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met Trump last month, he and his team spent the day before running through endless scenarios, lines of questioning and role-plays to ensure they were prepared for any scenario.

But in the end, they were still taken aback when Trump spoke off the cuff at their news conference on the sensitive issues of settlements and a future Palestinian state.

In other words he has no idea how to behave, and no inclination to find out, so he’s almost certain to do something inappropriate and embarrassing, or rather, many such things.

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