The World: The Chancellor's Ode to Joy

Another difficult visitor—though hardly in the same league—preceded Begin to Washington. West German Chancellor Helmut Schmidt, notoriously solemn and often cranky, had been angered by Carter Administration pressure on West Germany to pump up its economy and to refrain from selling full-cycle nuclear plants abroad. Schmidt had also expressed fears that Carter's unsubtle, missionary foreign policy style and his human rights campaign were hurting detente and East-West relations. But Chancellor and President took pains to mute their differences, and both sides considered the meeting "an atmospheric success." Schmidt—whom Carter had called "Helmut" all along—finally unbent enough to address the President as...

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