Hillary Clinton has intervened in talks over the future of Opel and Vauxhall at the request of German ministers as the American Government unveiled plans to sink more taxpayers' funds into the European carmakers' US parent, General Motors (GM).
Frank-Walter Steinmeier, the German Finance Minister, spoke by telephone today with Mrs Clinton to seek "support in the search for a solution," his spokesman said. Mrs Clinton pledged to intervene to demand "the greatest possible American support" from Timothy Geithner, the Treasury Secretary, the spokesman added.
Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg, the Economics Minister, also denounced the US Treasury for dispatching a junior official who had to consult Washington through a video link at regular intervals during the night.
Mr Guttenberg said the talks had been "absurd in parts" and demanded "more seriousness and a greater willingness to compromise on the part of the US."
Overnight negotiations over the future of the US carmaker's European operation broke down when GM sought more funding for Opel despite Germany's pledge to provide billions of euros in state guarantees as well as a €1.5 billion bridging loan.
Now, perhaps, you can understand the incompetence of the Obama Administation. Of course, La Clinton can't actually get involved: she can only try to use her good offices to get Geithner to actually pay attention.