Donald and Melania Trump made a surprise visit to U.S. soldiers stationed in Iraq on Wednesday, where they personally thanked the troops for their “service, success, and sacrifice,” per a White House statement quoted by BBC News. One moment during the visit — a “rare public display of affection” between the president and the first lady — stood out to some observers, including a body language expert who commented that the kiss had some awkwardness to it.
Speaking to U.K. publication the Express, Judi James explained that Donald and Melania Trump’s cheek kiss during their public appearance for the troops marked a “rare event” for the couple to share a smooch. She stressed that the kiss was “awkward and lacking in symmetry” due to the varying styles used by the president and the first lady.
“Their approaches are different, with Trump clutching his wife’s upper arm tightly enough to make his knuckles whiten while Melania appears to barely lay her splayed hand on his bicep with no sign of holding or clutching,” said James.
“Melania appears to keep their torsos apart as they kiss, stretching her neck in to achieve face-closeness instead.”
James also described Donald Trump’s body language during the kiss, commenting that the president’s kissing style appeared “rather dominant” due to how he raised his chin, with his “fully pursed” lips touching his wife’s upper cheek area. She also continued emphasizing how the kiss appeared to be awkward and suggested that this might be because the Trumps are not used to showing their affection in front of the camera.
“This rather awkward style of cheek kiss with contrasting touch and little in the way of choreography would normally suggest a social or business greeting or farewell kiss between colleagues or friends.”
U.S. President Donald Trump makes surprise Christmas visit to U.S. troops in Iraq. It is his first trip to the war-torn country since taking office nearly two years ago https://t.co/A7uZ2bSUdo pic.twitter.com/imezgu8V3V— China Xinhua News (@XHNews) December 26, 2018
Commenting on Donald and Melania Trump’s general body language during their appearance for the troops, James opined that the president was on “celebrity mode” as he interacted with the soldiers, which meant he was comfortable while having the spotlight on him and getting the chance to communicate and relate to his audience.
According to her biography on the website of U.K. management group Knight Ayton, Judi James has made appearances on news networks such as BBC News, Sky News, and CNN, and reality shows such as Big Brother. The biography also detailed her experience as the author of 26 fiction and nonfiction books that primarily focus on her main expertise as a body language and communication specialist.
Donald and Melania Trump’s surprise Iraq visit marked the first time the president visited soldiers in a combat zone since he took office in January 2017. As previously reported by the Inquisitr, Trump did more than just offer his thanks to U.S. troops during his visit, as he also offered some remarks on the recent wave of ISIS attacks in Iraq, promising the soldiers that the U.S. will “hit them so fast and so hard” if it is observed that the militant group is doing something “that we don’t like.”