Bush massages a surprised German Chancellor Merkel at G-8 Summit

Published: Tuesday July 18, 2006

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A video posted to a German newspaper's website shows President George W. Bush massaging Germany's first female Chancellor, Angela Merkel.

RAW STORY is making links to the video and photos available here.

President Bush paid a visit to Germany on July 13, prior to the G-8 Summit near St. Petersburg, with Merkel hosting him in her home region. The video of the massage from a G-8 meeting shows the president getting closer to the German Chancellor than one usually sees between world leaders.

As Merkel speaks with Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi, Bush approaches Merkel from behind and givers her a squeeze on her shoulders. The video clearly shows Merkel lifting her arms in surprise as Bush lets go.

Observing the contact between the leaders, the LA Times charitably declared that Merkel "smiled."

The link to the video is available at the Bild website. Bild's full coverage of the incident, including a frame-by-frame analysis, is here.

Correction: When this aticle was first published, the location of the G-8 summit was incorrectly identified as Moscow. The summit is taking place outside of St. Petersburg.