Trump’s ambassador to Germany, Richard Grennell is being shunned by the leaders of his host country and the “vain” and “narcissistic” diplomat is increasingly isolated according to current and former diplomats and officials from both sides of the Atlantic.
According to Der Spiegel, Berlin’s elite want nothing to do with Grennell, who insulted the country’s leaders immediately after being appointed to office. Few politicians “want anything to do with him” and “doors have been shut” when Grennell comes calling.
Grenell got off to a rocky start in Germany. Within hours of taking his post, he told Germany that it was time to “wind down operations” in Iran immediately, as part of Trump’s decision to pull out of the Iran nuclear deal. However, none of the other parties to the deal, including Germany, pulled out of it.
“It’s not my task to teach people about the fine art of diplomacy, especially not the U.S. ambassador. But he does appear to need some tutoring,” Andrea Nahles, the leader of Germany’s mainstream Social Democratic party, said at the time.
But “numerous American and German diplomats, cabinet members, lawmakers, high-ranking officials, lobbyists and think tank experts” tell the paper that Grennell has been frozen out of the Berlin elite that normally welcome the American ambassador.
They say Grennell has abandoned trying to make inroads into the German government and is instead playing to his most important audience: Donald Trump. They note Grennell’s constant talking head appearances on Fox News and regular trips back to Washington DC in hopes of getting face time with the president.
They describe him as “a vain, narcissistic person” who likes to dish out criticism but who’s deep insecurities make him unable to accept any himself. He “thirsts for the approval of others,” they say.
Prime Minister Angela Merkel deliberately avoids him. She hasn’t received him in Berlin, despite being in close contact with Grennell’s predecessor, former Ambassador and now-New Jersey governor, Phil Murphy.
While the ambassador has pressed parliamentarians to invite him to their districts, most have declined.
The embassy declined to make Grennell available for comment and responded to a list of questions the newspaper sent with a quote as combative as Grennell himself.
“All seven of your questions are based on fabricated stories that are not true. Every one of the questions assumes something that is false,” a spokesperson sent the paper.
Grennell has accused the outlet of being out to get him before. The newspaper has run stories “which could have been proven untrue if they had checked the facts with the Embassy first,” he said.
He has also criticized LGBTQ Nation‘s coverage of his career ups and downs for not getting a direct quote and, instead, quoting him from other interviews or his social media statements. He has a history of trolling outlets and critics on Twitter.