Biden Probes Media Limits in G7 Orchestrated by Meloni

 June 15, 2024
U.S. President Joe Biden questioned the media guidelines as Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni took over as his handler from the usual suspect, First Lady Jull Biden, and directed the interactions during the G7 summit in Italy.Biden's controlled interactions with the press highlighted Meloni's intervention in the Biden communication crisis.

The G7 summit, set against the backdrop of the picturesque Apulia region of Italy, showcased Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni's strong leadership as the host. Meloni meticulously stage-managed the event, ensuring smooth interactions among world leaders, including U.S. President Joe Biden and Pope Francis.

On Friday, Biden and Meloni began their initial formal meeting amidst a scene set with U.S. and Italian flags. As the meeting commenced, Biden sought clarity on the media protocol, asking Meloni, "They’re just taking pictures?" Meloni nodded in agreement, silently confirming Biden's inquiry.

During the brief photo op, it was indicated that neither leader would make remarks. Reporters were subsequently escorted out after capturing the images. The restricted interactions underscored the strategic staging of the events.

Meloni Manages G7 Leaders with Precision

Throughout the summit, Meloni took charge, guiding other leaders and maintaining a tight handle on media exposure. On Thursday night, Biden displayed frustration at a press conference alongside Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky when journalists posed off-topic questions. He urged the reporters to adhere to the established rules.

Biden's schedule in Europe was packed, marking his second visit within the week. Besides the G7 leaders, he also engaged with the presidents of Brazil and Turkey and had a notable encounter with Pope Francis.

Aides to President Biden were noticeably active in curating his media appearances during the summit. They limited his interactions with the press, allowing only selected moments for journalists to enter his meetings, a stark deviation from less controlled former meetings.

Biden's Press Interactions Deliberately Curated

One specific instance highlighting Meloni's control was during a parachuting demonstration on Thursday. Biden had wandered away from what was supposed to be a group photo; Meloni adeptly redirected him, ensuring the planned photo moment proceeded seamlessly.

Another testament to her organizing skills was bringing together the leaders for the 'family photo' session. This was meticulously planned, set against the stunning backdrop of the Apulia region. Meloni's logistical acumen ensured everything ran smoothly.

The summit's venue, the luxurious Borgo Egnazia on Italy's Adriatic coast, involved a special reception where Meloni greeted Pope Francis. The Prime Minister’s interactions suggested a combination of respect and protocol adherence.

Meloni's Rising Political Influence

While Meloni has been in the spotlight recently, her political influence extends beyond the G7 summit. Her significant performance in the European parliamentary elections has bolstered the conservative representation within the EU, underlined by her party's first-place finish in Italy.

U.S. administration officials acknowledged Meloni's surging influence within the European political landscape. A senior U.S. official noted her party's notable success in Italy, emphasizing the critical role she plays within the EU framework.

As the G7 summit unfolded, the juxtaposition of Biden's limited media engagements became more evident. Thursday’s structured press conference with Zelensky, where reporters from each side were permitted only two questions, highlighted the orchestrated nature of Biden's appearances.

Complex Summit Dynamics and Controlled Interactions

The entire summit was a test of global diplomacy, stagecraft, and media management. Participants witnessed Meloni’s extensive efforts to ensure that the summit proceedings remained flawless, reflecting her command over the event's logistics.

Biden addressed the press with straightforward comments, stating, "Good to see you all," as he adhered to the structured format set by his aides and Meloni's team. This approach aligned with his practice of maintaining stringent control over his public interactions.

In sum, the G7 summit in Italy was a meticulously coordinated event, with Meloni at the helm, steering its course with both authority and finesse. Biden's carefully managed media exposure was a significant aspect of the summit's dynamics.

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