It's going to be a slow day blogging, as I'm working on my CENSA essay and doing some miscellaneous errands this weekend. Nevertheless, I thought this blog entry at Nancy Youssef's Nukes and Spooks was particularly post-worthy.
So what is the first thing you say when the highest-ranking military officer from your closest allied nation comes for a visit, particularly when you are situated in the Middle East and your ally provides you $1 billion in aid annually, including $360 million for military training? Thanks for the money and training? Let’s talk about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan? What are you doing about the Palestinian-Israeli conflict? No, such introductions are simply too heavy between friends, or so it turns out. No, when the leader is King Abdullah II of Jordan and the visitor is Adm. Mike Mullen of the United States, the best introduction to a visit is: “I saw you on the Daily Show, and it was great.” Or so I discovered today while traveling with the chairman here.
Sources in the room tell N&S that the king went on to explain that he often watches the Daily Show with Jon Stewart to measure the pulse of American sentiment on world affairs. And that was how today’s meeting began. The chairman apparently thanked the king for his sentiments and explained that he hadn’t seen his segment on the show himself. (Why would, I suppose, since he was there.) But if you would like to see what the king of Jordan was talking about, click here.