U.S. President Donald Trump and German Chancellor Angela Merkel meet in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, DC. (AFP / SAUL LOEB)
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German Chancellor Angela Merkel heads to the White House Friday for talks with Donald Trump, facing an uphill struggle to save the Iran nuclear deal, avoid a trade war and make her relationship with the U.S. president functional again.The German leader's visit has already been overshadowed by a backslapping three-day festival of "fraternite" between Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron this week.That is a dramatic change in fortunes for the German leader who, for more than a decade, was seen by Washington not just as a sensible and pragmatic interlocutor, but the de facto leader of Europe.Just hours before the chancellor landed late Thursday, some 15 months after Trump was sworn into office, the Republican Congress finally got around to confirming an ambassador to Germany.Trump last month announced tariffs of 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on aluminum, claiming foreign imports were harming US national security by undermining the domestic production needed for military readiness.Macron came away from his meetings speculating that Trump would kill the deal, but debate continues to rage.
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