Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Friday December 6, 2019
Trump calls Trudeau ‘two-faced’ after video showing Trudeau, NATO leaders candidly talking about Trump goes viral
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and other foreign leaders have been caught on camera apparently talking candidly about U.S. President Donald Trump, with the footage now going viral and stoking fears of a backlash.
The video was shot during a reception at Buckingham Palace held Tuesday night in London, where leaders from NATO’s 29 countries are marking the 70th anniversary of the military alliance with two days of meetings and discussions.
In it, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson can be heard asking French President Emmanuel Macron why he was late, to which Trudeau says: “He was late because he takes a 40-minute press conference off the top.”
The leaders do not use Trump’s name, but the U.S. president took dozens of questions from journalists on Tuesday during impromptu news conferences at the start of his individual meetings with Macron, Trudeau and NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg.
Trump responded to Trudeau’s comments at another news conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday afternoon, calling Trudeau “two-faced.” He immediately followed the comment saying “he’s a nice guy,” but suggested Trudeau might not be happy that Trump called him out for not paying enough to NATO.
An impromptu news conference with Trump and Trudeau on Tuesday lasted more than half an hour, which included questions about China, the impeachment process and also saw the Canadian prime minister deflecting questions from the U.S. president about Canada’s defence spending.
The reception footage also shows Trudeau talking about “his team’s jaws drop to the floor,” though the subject isn’t clear.
The Prime Minister’s Office did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Trudeau is scheduled to hold a news conference at the end of the NATO summit on Wednesday.
The footage, shot by the British host’s pool camera, has since spread across the internet and been broadcast by international media such as Fox News and the New York Times, with observers suggesting Trudeau and the other leaders were mocking Trump. (Hamilton Spectator)