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IR Insider is a production of NYU's International Relations Society. Our goal is to explain and discuss issues in IR in an engaging and thought-provoking fashion. We are written by students, for students, about issues students care about. 

A Picture is Worth A Thousand Words

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. What about a photo of the first lady genuinely smiling not beside her husband… but instead, with former President Barack Obama? By now everyone has seen the photo of former presidents and the first ladies at Barbara Bush’s funeral, which took place this weekend. President Trump was noticeably absent as he decided to spend the weekend golfing in Mar-a-Lago.

 The infamous photo of Melanie smiling

The infamous photo of Melanie smiling

 

While other members of the exclusive presidential club paid their respects to Barbara Bush, Trump was busy golfing and tweeting up a storm. Also circulating around Twitter was a photo of President Obama saying something to Melania Trump, causing her to break into a rare smile. The moment quickly went viral. The internet has been quick to come up with sassy captions for the moment:

 Some funny tweets via Huffington Post

Some funny tweets via Huffington Post

 Some funny tweets via Huffington Post   

Some funny tweets via Huffington Post

 


In other news, both Melania and President Trump have returned to D.C. to host Emmanuel Macron and his wife–Brigitte. The main agenda for the visit– the nuclear agreement with Iran. According to The New York Times, Trump has criticized the agreement, “because it did not deal with ballistic missiles or Iran’s activities in places like Yemen or Syria.” Another point of criticism is that the agreement will begin to expire after 10 years.

This visit, along with German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s upcoming one, come just before the May 12 deadline set by Trump himself to “fix” the Iran agreement, or leave it. Both the U.S. and European negotiators have begun making side agreements with Iran that would put in place new standards, or if not followed, would reinforce sanctions on the country. Most importantly, The Times notes, Europeans want to be sure that if agreements are made, the U.S. will stick with the deal.

Photos of President Trump, Melania, President Macron, and Brigette planting a tree in the South Lawn show hope that–perhaps, like the tree, with enough nurture and patience strong relations between the U.S., Europe, and the Middle East can grow too.

 Photo: Doug Mills, The New York Times

Photo: Doug Mills, The New York Times