I tweeted about this yesterday but couldn’t find a video clip – now I have thanks to Lucienne Magalie Pons’ blog.

I was watching France24’s lunchtime bulletin and happened to catch the start of the summit headed up by Cameron and Sarkozy on military & civil nuclear development.

I’m trying to keep abreast of french politics at the moment, given the 2012 presidential elections and the euro crisis, but I’m afraid Sarkozy’s opening lines, or rather the manner in which he delivered them, completely distracted me from whatever they went on to discuss.

He begins with the using welcoming platitudes, but two lines in particular

une chaleureuse bienvenue à nos amis britanniques…

at 00.12, and

les relations franco-britanniques sont excellentes

at 00.31, were delivered with such patent disinterest – even boredom – in a low tone of voice, with great exhalation, that it was abundantly clear that words might say one thing, but manner belies the total opposite.

Frankly all credit to Cameron for keeping a straight face – I think I would have been hard pushed not to at least raise an eyebrow when the words coming through my babelfish earpiece failed so completely to match the tone and mannerism of the person supposedly delivering them!

“Les relations franco-britanniques sont excellentes” – really, Monsieur Sarkozy?
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