NYT: President Obama skipped dessert at a long summit meeting dinner in Cambodia on Monday to rush back to his hotel suite. It was after 11:30 p.m., and his mind was on rockets in Gaza rather than Asian diplomacy. He picked up the telephone to call the Egyptian leader who is the new wild card in his Middle East calculations.
Over the course of the next 25 minutes, he and President Mohamed Morsi of Egypt hashed through ways to end the latest eruption of violence, a conversation that would lead Mr. Obama to send Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton to the region. As he and Mr. Morsi talked, Mr. Obama felt they were making a connection. Three hours later, at 2:30 in the morning, they talked again.
…. The White House phone log tells part of the tale. Mr. Obama talked with Mr. Morsi three times within 24 hours and six times over the course of several days, an unusual amount of one-on-one time for a president. Mr. Obama told aides he was impressed with the Egyptian leader’s pragmatic confidence. He sensed an engineer’s precision with surprisingly little ideology. Most important, Mr. Obama told aides that he considered Mr. Morsi a straight shooter who delivered on what he promised and did not promise what he could not deliver.
President Obama talks with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel during a phone call from his hotel suite in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Nov. 19 (Pete Souza)
President Barack Obama talks on the phone with Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi, aboard Air Force One during the flight from Phnom Penh, Cambodia to Washington, D.C., Nov. 20. National Security Advisor Tom Donilon listens at right. (Pete Souza)
President Barack Obama talks on the phone with Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi in the Oval Office, Nov. 21. Chief of Staff Jack Lew, National Security Advisor Tom Donilon, and Deputy National Security Advisor Denis McDonough listen in the foreground. (Pete Souza)
President Obama with Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra
President Barack Obama, with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Ambassador Kristie Kenney, left, meet with King Bhumibol Adulyadej of the Kingdom of Thailand, at Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok, Thailand, Nov. 18 (Pete Souza)
3:10 PM (3:10 AM EST): The President arrives in Bangkok, Thailand
3:45: Visits Wat Pho Royal Monastery
5:0: Receives a Royal Audience with King Bhumibol Adulyadej
6:0: Arrives Thai Koo Fah Building and takes part in a formal welcoming ceremony
6:15: Meets with Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra of Thailand
7:10: The President and PM Shinawatra hold a joint press conference
8:15: Attends an official dinner with PM Shinawatra
9:45: Meets and greets with United States Embassy personnel
** Thailand is 12 hours ahead of US EST **
Monday: The President travels to Burma where he will meet with President Thein Sein and Aung San Suu Kyi and deliver a speech to encourage Burma’s ongoing democratic transition.
In the evening, he will travel to Cambodia, where he will attend the East Asia Summit and meet with the leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.
Tuesday: The President will remain in Cambodia for the East Asia Summit. In the evening, he will depart Cambodia en route Washington, DC.
Wednesday morning: The President returns to Washington, DC. Later, he will pardon the National Thanksgiving Turkey at the White House and the First Family will participate in a service event in the Washington, DC area.
Thursday: The President will celebrate Thanksgiving at the White House. There are no public events scheduled.
Friday: The President has no public events scheduled. The First Lady will be presented with the official White House Christmas Tree at the North Portico.
Thank you time-zone-calculating super-brainy-heads for the conversion help!