INTERNATIONAL > White House releases statement on 'baseball bat' photo


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White House official photo

White House official photo

The White House released a statement today to end the debate on U.S. President Barack Obama's pose holding a baseball bat while speaking on the phone with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, saying the photo was posted online to "highlight the ongoing close relationship" between the two leaders.

White House National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said the photo had been taken and released to show the closeness of the relationship, as well as the ongoing contact between Obama and Erdoğan regarding the Syrian crisis.

Hayden said they had been keeping a close watch on the debate in Turkey that followed the release of the photo.

"We posted this photo with only one goal, and that is to highlight the close relationship of President Obama with Prime Minister Erdoğan, and to draw attention to their meetings on the Syrian crisis," the statement read. "The president cares highly about the partnership and friendship he has with Prime Minister Erdoğan on a series of important issues [the] U.S. works on with Turkey."

The bat was a gift to the president from the American athlete Hank Aaron, the statement also said.


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Notice on comments

Rifat Erman

8/5/2012 11:07:30 PM

Terrorism must be met as harshly as Americans pursue them. Turkey must use drones to wipe out PKK leadership. The policy of the US states that any other adult male deaths that are involved in such a strike, are considered collateral damage, being that they are probably guilty as well. Turkey must use the latest technology to pursue all terrorists.

Morse Fan

8/4/2012 8:01:17 PM

Take no notice of President Obama. This is just about showing Americans how tough he is, because it's pretty much a given now that we all think he's a wimp. Some people like it, but he's still a wimp.

turkic voice

8/4/2012 1:02:41 AM

this is a very upseting picture of the USA i fell like this man Obama has lost all sence of whats is ok and what is not,He rests his feet on a coffie tabels given as gifts by the queen some houndred years ago, and now he plays this tough guy look. what has this man become, why does he do this to him self, he might want to use this for his re election compain..i realy hope Erdogan does not leave this unreplyed...this is nothing but a slap in the face of the Turk.

Rifat Erman

8/3/2012 11:31:46 PM

As an American, I am very proud also of my Turkish heritage. The " tough guy " image of the President holding a baseball bat while speaking to America's strongest military partner, is most distressing. The image is most inappropriate. Americans should be reminded of the 5,400 Turkish soldiers that saved our US 8TH army from 500,000 Chinese soldiers in the Korean War. By the way, that was in hand to hand combat, as the Turkish front line ran out of ammunition during the battle !!

Tamer Aslantas

8/3/2012 3:53:21 PM

This remembers me of a rapvideo where a 'black' guy is also holding a baseball bat and having a conversation with his 'friend'. He was not speaking 'softly' but the stick was BIG! I can see some Illuminati things right in the back looking like a pyramid with an eye sort of thing in the top!?

davut babaoglu

8/3/2012 2:24:17 PM

This one of the most blatantly obvious messages that could possibly come out of the Whitehouse. The man is holding a bloody baseball bat while talking to Tayip on the phone! And the picture was made public by the Whitehouse! These guys watch even the color of their ties so as not to give off a wrong message, and are sensitive about EVERY image that could possibly be misinterpreted. Too funny! Look at their explanation: "...to draw attention to their meetings on the Syrian crisis" FUN-NY!

Wesley Wells

8/3/2012 1:59:10 PM

Mr Obama may have had in mind Theodore Roosevelt's famous quote, "speak softly, and carry a big stick," which Roosevelt attributed a West African proverb.

Rimon Tree

8/3/2012 11:26:26 AM

Oh dear! Obama is giving the "good buddy", who is on casual terms with his five best friends! Don't underestimate Erdo, he just needs you, Mr. President, and does not have any surplus interests, the least on having a common golf trip! Your tries to chum up to some people around in the ME is really getting sort of painful!

Ryan James

8/3/2012 11:10:31 AM

Of course. As close as a baseball bat to a ball...or a head. Incredible doubletalk.
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