Barack Obama, on his first visit to an Islamic nation, has reassured Turkey that he will do all the arm-twisting he can to secure its membership of the European Union.
"It is not for the European Union to decide who can or can't join it," said President Obama. "Just because most of the member states have a few minor quibbles about Turkey's endemic corruption and graft, the relentless persecution of its Kurdish minority, severe restrictions on freedom of speech, repression of women's rights, the use of torture, assassination and murder by the military police, the banning of several political parties and a right-wing army breathing down the government's neck, doesn't mean that Turkey is in any way incompatible with the values of Western civilisation."
"The bottom line is that their generals are very pally with our generals," smiled the leader of the free world, "And the US Air Force would have had to use quite a bit more fuel to bomb the shit out of Mosul, if we hadn't had our Turkish airbases right there on its doorstep. So Turkey is good for the environment, too."
Gordon Brown agreed wholeheartedly with the Mr Obama, standing on the steps of Number Ten in front the US ambassador, who was vigorously pushing Mr Brown's head up and down. Other European leaders, though, were less enthusiastic.
"Look at zis map," said Nicolas Sarkozy. "Zis teeny leetle bit of Turkey ees on ze European continent. Ze ozzer four-twenties-fifteen per cent, she ees not. If Monsieur Yes-We-Can ees so amorous towards his Turkish allies, he can make eet ze 51st state of America, ees eet not? Good."
The French president refused to be drawn, however, on whether the purchase of a wonky Turkish-made Beko telly a few years ago may have adversely affected his views on Europe's Eastern neighbour.