On calls with foreign leaders, Trump is still Trump

In this Feb. 18, 2016 file photo, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump listens to his mobile phone during a lunch stop in North Charleston, S.C.
In this Feb. 18, 2016 file photo, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump listens to his mobile phone during a lunch stop in North Charleston, S.C. AP

If you’ve heard Donald Trump’s hyperbole-laced speeches on the stump, then you may have a good idea of what many foreign leaders could be hearing from the president-elect.

“You have a very good reputation. You are a terrific guy. You are doing amazing work which is visible in every way,” Trump told Pakistan’s Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif on Wednesday, according to a report released by the Pakistani government.

“I am ready and willing to play any role that you want me to play to address and find solutions to the outstanding problems,” Trump told the prime minister, who had called to congratulate him on winning the election. “It will be an honor and I will personally do it.”

The unusually detailed report suggests that Trump went out of his way to flatter Sharif.

“As I am talking to you, prime minister, I feel I am talking to a person I have known for long,” Trump said, according to the report. “Your country is amazing, with tremendous opportunities. Pakistanis are one of the most intelligent people.”

He asked Sharif to relay to the Pakistani people that he thinks “they are amazing” and that “all Pakistanis I have known are exceptional people.”

In response to an invitation to go visit Pakistan, Trump responded that he “would love to come to a fantastic country, fantastic place of fantastic people,” according to the report.

The businessman has not been as kind to the country in the past.

“Get it straight: Pakistan is not our friend. We’ve given them billions and billions of dollars, and what did we get? Betrayal and disrespect – and much worse. #TimeToGetTough,” he tweeted in 2012.

“When will Pakistan apologize to us for providing safe sanctuary to Osama Bin Laden for 6 years?! Some ‘ally,’” he tweeted a few months later.

In October, Trump caused consternation in Pakistan when he proclaimed that if he was elected the U.S. would be “best friends” with India, which is in long-running conflict Pakistan.

Trump has reportedly passed on receiving most intelligence briefings offered by the State Department, as well as its talking points and background briefings meant to prepare him for conversations with foreign leaders.

The president-elect has spoken to 44 heads of state as of Wednesday, according to Trump spokesman Sean Spicer. Since Trump’s transition office has not provided transcripts of his phone calls and interactions with foreign leaders, any known details have come from international outlets and other governments.

It was a photo released by the Japanese government that revealed that Trump’s daughter Ivanka was present at his meeting with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Similarly, a leaked report of his phone call with British Prime Minister Theresa May showed him breaking diplomatic protocol by casually inviting the foreign leader, saying “If you travel to the U.S., you should let me know.”