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Last Updated: Tuesday, 22 February, 2005, 15:58 GMT
Tour diary: Bush in Europe
US President George W Bush is in Europe, attempting to rebuild relationships strained by the war in Iraq. BBC Washington correspondent Justin Webb is travelling with the president. Here is his diary from the second day of the visit.

22 February

Nato agreement

It has been a struggle. After months of effort the final commitment came only today. Nato has managed to show a united front on Iraq. Every Nato nation including France is now helping with the programme to train Iraqi army officers.

Some of the contributions are very small. France will send one officer to help support the mission from here in Brussels. Luxembourg is making a financial contribution of around a hundred-ninety thousand dollars, but the Americans say it is the symbolism that counts.

Euro double-dutch

To Nato and the Bush news conference.

The president is wonderfully un-European - refreshingly so in the view of those of us who have worked in Brussels.

He is unsmooth. He stumbles over his sentences. He uses short, plain, sometimes almost babyish words, while the sophisticated multilingual Euro crowd prefer obfuscatory long ones.

And he gets a clear message across, like it or not. He has no need of spin.

It was interesting that on the White House bus back into town, the journalists did not need to compare notes or discuss the president's words and what they meant.

On the other hand, for Chirac and Schroeder there was a discussion that would have made an old-style Kremlinologist blush.

Much of it was over my head, but my clever colleague Alec Russell from the Telegraph held his own rather well, I am pleased to report, in an argument with a Dutchman about whether a particular message was "implicit" or "explicit" in a text.

Some people think Schroeder said one thing about Nato and some think he actually meant another. Others claim that Chirac really believes Schroeder wanted to say... etc etc.

Welcome to Europe, Mr Bush.

Watch George W Bush address European leaders

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