In Depth

What the US is saying about Donald Trump’s state visit

Fox News presenter claims UK could learn valuable lesson from the president

Donald Trump’s royal day in London is splashed across the US papers and news channels today, with many remarking on the pomp and circumstance surrounding the president’s state visit.

Air Force One touched down at Stansted Airport on Monday, before the Trump family headed to Buckingham Palace to meet the Queen.

But the fanfare could not hide the “obvious strains” as the “Trump wrecking ball” landed in the capital, says The Washington Post.

“His state visit to Britain - stalled for months amid acrimony and awkwardness - seems less a rekindling of the ‘special relationship’ than a hostile incursion,” says the newspaper, which notes that a series of mass protests are planned in London during his three-day stay.

The criticism of the president is by no means confined to Britain. No sooner had the president arrived than anti-Trump Americans began flooding the Twitterverse “with words of support - and apologies - for like-minded comrades across the pond”, reports Newsweek.

The hashtag “#DearUK” was soon trending, with some US detractors asking Britons if they could “please keep him”.

Laura Ingraham of Fox News insists that the “fact that things went so smoothly clearly irritated the media elite at home and abroad”.

She also suggests that the UK could learn a lesson from their presidential visitor, who has openly expressed his support for Brexit.

“Trump is reminding our cousins that a nation that is not truly sovereign and free won’t be a nation for long,” says Ingraham. “And for those who bristle at Trump’s brashness, I say get over it.

“The resistance won’t admit it, but he’s getting results for the people back home. And if Britain rejects the false promise of globalism and listens to their people, they can be great again too.”

Meanwhile, the New York Post’s Seth Lipsky claims that Trump’s visit comes shortly after Britons “showed themselves to be a lot Trumpier than the elites have been suggesting”.

Lipsky says that while protesters are out in force this week, “the far more meaningful ‘demonstration’, though, took place 23 May. That’s when Britons elected a new delegation to the European Parliament. In a stunning turnout, Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party just trounced the Establishment.”

But The New York Times insists there is “deep ambivalence” in Britain about Trump’s visit, with the public “mostly” rejecting the president and his policies.

The newspaper points out that even as the Queen welcomed Trump with an honour guard and royal artillery salute, he was embroiled in an “ugly dispute” on Twitter with London Mayor Sadiq Khan, whom the president called a “stone cold loser”.

“The juxtaposition of high pageantry and low name-calling captured yet again the odd swath that this president cuts on the world stage: impulsive and erratic, delighted by a lavish welcome but preoccupied by petty feuds or events back home,” the paper adds.

Yet the Queen “seemed to cast a calming spell on the president, who put his smash-mouth style on hold for a few hours while in her presence”, says CNN.

The “purpose of such adulatory treatment” from the Royal Family is to “grease the wheels of statecraft”, notes the broadcaster. “The bet is that targeting Trump’s weakness for exaggerated shows of respect will make him look kindly on Britain amid its deepest political crisis since World War II.”

However, the “unpredictable and often self-absorbed president rarely draws such straight lines”, CNN warns.

“Trump’s foreign policy is often calculated to advance his domestic political goals. A weakened European Union and a more independent Britain that has ditched the idea of multilateral progress fits with the vision of nation states pursuing their own interests first embraced by Trump,” the broadcaster concludes.

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