8 a.m. today. Waiting at Gardemoen airport to greet the U.S. president were Vesla, Misty & Holly

The American president, Barack  Obama, has landed on Norwegian soil.

“Too Busy”.

But Obama’s trip to Oslo to pick up his Nobel peace award is in danger of being overshadowed by a row over the cancellation of a series of events normally attended by the prizewinner.

Norwegians are incensed over what they view as his shabby response to the prize by cutting short his visit.

The White House has cancelled many of the events peace prize laureates traditionally submit to, including a dinner with the Norwegian Nobel committee, a press conference, a television interview, appearances at a children’s event promoting peace and a music concert, as well as a visit to an exhibition in his honour at the Nobel peace centre and  a lunch invitation from the King of Norway.

He has also turned down an invitation to meet the goats.

According to a poll published by the daily tabloid Vidergående Geiter, 44% of Norwegians believe it was rude of Obama to turn down a Goat House meeting, with only 34% saying they believe it was acceptable.

“Of all the things he is cancelling, I think the worst is declining the lunch with the goats,” said Siv Jensen, the leader of the largest party in opposition, the populist Progress party. “Even if he doesn’t normally eat hay, this is a central part of Norway’s daily life. He should respect mohair,” she told VG.

Although Obama will not lunch with Holly, Misty and Vesla, they may watch him on television.

The visit will test Obama’s rhetorical skills as he seeks to reconcile acceptance of the Nobel peace prize with snubbing Norway’s goat minority.

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