John Kerry, the most powerful diplomat in the US, was forced to bend over backwards to avoid agreeing with the journalists who, before his very eyes, were ripping into foreign secretary Boris Johnson.

Speaking at a joint press conference in the Locarno room of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on Tuesday, the pair were repeatedly asked about Johnson's past remarks regarding the United States and his attitude to the truth.

Trouble was clearly brewing as one reporter asked:

I understand you don't want to revisit the past perhaps...

At this point alarm bells must have been going off in Johnson's head. This could be a reference to a lot of things.

Picture: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty


Picture: Carl Court/Getty

The reporter continued, and questioned how Kerry and other foreign ministers will be able to believe anything Johnson tells them, given his reputation for being economical with the truth.

Given your long history of wild exaggeration and frankly outright lies... I'm just wondering how Mr Kerry and others should believe what you say, considering this very very long history.

Luckily (sort of), Johnson stepped in to take the question.

But then Kerry called on a reporter from the Associated Press, who followed up on the non-answer given by Johnson to his colleague.

Watch the video below:


The AP reporter referred to Johnson's quotes regarding president Obama and his 'part-Kenyan ancestral dislike of the British Empire' and also Johnson's comments about former secretary Clinton's appearance.

It's from this moment in the press conference that secretary Kerry begins to find the upper edge of his lectern absolutely fascinating. The reporter continues:

What confidence do you have the Mr Johnson will represent the interests of anyone but himself?...Is the Mr Johnson you saw during the referendum campaign what the US and UK needs right now?

For reasons passing understanding, Kerry asked the reporter to repeat this harsh question because he didn't hear it.

Maybe Kerry is having some fun with Johnson after all...

By the end of this line of questioning it's clear Johnson would very much like the ground to swallow him up.

A successful first outing for the foreign secretary.

Keep reading...Show less
Please log in or register to upvote this article
The Conversation (0)