Merkel's team had prepared for a hard meeting. The president also gushed over the chancellor winning a fourth term.
While "expectations in Paris and Berlin are really low" for a breakthrough on either the Iran deal or averting the steel and aluminum tariffs, both leaders felt the effort was still important to take, according to Constanze Stelzenmüller, a fellow at the Brookings Institution. While Trump and Macron complimented and embraced each other, the German chancellor kept her public statements brief and handshakes formal.
German officials had signaled that their goals for Friday's visit were modest.
U.S. Customs and Border Patrol have not commented on the potential quarantine. About 2,000 American soldiers died in the June 1918 Battle of Belleau Wood, fighting a German offensive. "You can bank on it", Trump declared at a news conference with Merkel. It took two years of negotiation just to get a deal for 10 years of restrictions on the Iranian nuclear program in return for an end to United Nations economic sanctions. USA sanctions were far older, but the deal that was signed in 2015 ended all United Nations sanctions and the most severe US sanctions, which targeted Iranian banks and oil exports.
Iran's President Hassan Rouhani rejected any hopes of rewriting the nuclear deal.
Germany's planned increase of $18 billion in defense spending over the next three years also failed to impress Trump, even though it was a hard concession Merkel and her party wrested from their governing partner, the Social Democrats, during coalition talks earlier this year.
In response, Merkel said that Germany in 2019 will earmark 1.3 percent of its GDP for defense. At times while Trump spoke, she smirked or looked bewildered. He also insisted: "France is not naive when it comes to Iran. And the decision lies with the president", referring to Trump.
"NATO is wonderful but it helps Europe more than it helps us".
But after a state visit to the USA this week, he admitted he had failed to secure any promise from Trump to keep the deal alive.