The Corner

State Department Official Insults Britain

Further confirmation that the Obama administration may be downgrading the Special Relationship with Great Britain is provided by a State Department official in an interview with the Sunday Telegraph.

Asked about the underwhelming reception given to Gordon Brown when he visited the White House last week, the “furious” unnamed official, who was involved in the planning of the meeting, declared:

There’s nothing special about Britain. You’re just the same as the other 190 countries in the world. You shouldn’t expect special treatment.

It would be good to know who this official is, and whether the Secretary of State agrees with this insulting portrayal of the Anglo-American alliance — especially at a time when thousands of British soldiers are putting their lives on the line alongside their American allies in Afghanistan, while most of Europe sits on the sidelines. If the State Department doesn’t support the views expressed, it should disown them immediately.

Words matter when it comes to international diplomacy, and statements like this will only serve to raise major questions about the new administration’s commitment to maintaining a strong relationship with America’s closest ally. 

Nile Gardiner is the director of the Margaret Thatcher Center for Freedom at the Heritage Foundation.