Barack Obama, titular head of the free world, has responded to Paris with weariness and annoyance. His news conference in Turkey was marked by a stunning tone of passivity, detachment and lassitude, compounded by impatience and irritability at the very suggestion that his Syria strategy might be failing.
The only time he showed any passion was in denouncing Republicans for hardheartedness toward Muslim refugees. One hundred and twenty-nine innocents lie dead, but it takes the GOP to kindle Obama’s ire.
The rest was mere petulance, dismissing criticisms of his Syria policy as popping off.
In one sense, it is amusing in a tragic sort of way that the Europeans who listened to an American president clearly more angry with suggestions he should do more than he was about the death toll in Paris got this attitude from the president who they begged to get in 2008.
Tired of a cowboy president who led the West to war against jihadi enemies, the West came to believe that if only America had a European-like president with a proper respect for nuance, then all would be well.
The degree of puppy dog worship was embarrassing:
Oh Gordon, your smile! The Prime Minister, appearing alongside Barack Obama after breakfast today, stared at his American visitor and almost shattered the TV camera lenses with his moony grin.
You could have played Jewish harp with his lower lip, it was stretched so twangy tight.
Messrs Mills and Boon, when next looking for a book cover for one of their romantic novellas, when next seeking an illustration of doggy devotion, could do worse than use a photograph of the Prime Minister at the meeting.
Mr Obama uttered a sentence. Mr Brown nodded. Mr Obama paused. Mr Brown froze, frowning. Mr Obama made a very slight joke.
Mr Brown gassed himself, laughing for a good 30 seconds, eyelids fluttering like the wings of a soft-flapping Cabbage White.
Good grief, get a room.
But now the Europeans see what they got when contrary to all expectations, the jihadis still hate them, nearly 7 full years into the era of hope and change.
What they wished for. Who they gushed over. Don't bother him by popping off and presuming to question his strategy.
Too late. ISIL has guns. But we just have flowers. That's really comforting to adults these days?