Danish forces not the only ones “punching above their weight”
When PM Lars Løkke Rasmussen visited the White House on Monday, he received some familiar-sounding praise from President Barack Obama.
On at least three previous occasions, Obama has praised small nations in exactly the same way he praised Denmark, according to Jyllands-Posten newspaper.
“Denmark is a country that –using and American phrase – punches above its weight,” Obama told Rasmussen, referring to the efforts of Danish soldiers in Afghanistan.
Compare that to what Obama told the Norwegian prime minister, Jens Stoltenberg, in 2009: “Norway has always stood shoulder to shoulder with the USA, and like I told the prime minister, there is a phrase we use in the US – a boxing phrase – Norway is punching above its weight.”
When the president met with the former Irish head of state, Brian Cowen, he said: “The Irish government is punching above its weight in crucial areas.”
And when Philippine president Macapagal-Arroyo visited the White House in 2009, his country was praised with the line: “Although the Philippines aren’t among the world’s biggest nations, the country punches above its weight on the international scene.”