These summits sound like those hellish attempts to have the whole family together for a normal Christmas, for the sake of the kids:
Some of the gatherings have lasted for 20 hours or more, spread over two days, with the leaders closeted on the upper floors of the brown marble Justus Lipsius building in Brussels, locked in heated and sometimes angry debate.
Those that don't get along can no longer hide it. The personality conflicts are bubbling to the surface, with diplomatic spats and disagreements growing ever more public, complicating efforts to resolve an already complex situation.
On Sunday, French President Nicolas Sarkozy and Britain's David Cameron, who weeks ago flew to Libya together to declare victory in the campaign to overthrow Muammar Gaddafi, argued bitterly for more than an hour over the best way of combating the crisis, diplomats present during the discussion said.
At one point, one of the diplomats said, Cameron made fun of Sarkozy, saying that when they had gone to Libya, the microphones on a podium from where they spoke were barely above his waist -- a dig at Sarkozy's relatively short height. ...
Italy's premier, Silvio Berlusconi, faces two corruption and tax fraud trials, and another case in which he is accused of paying for sex with an underage prostitute, and is now under pressure to deliver much deeper economic reforms to help prevent Italy going the way of Greece and taking a bailout.
Asked at a joint news conference on Sunday whether they trusted Berlusconi to do the right thing, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Sarkozy all but jeered at the Italian leader, smirking to each other before answering the question. ...
Jean-Claude Juncker, the prime minister of Luxembourg and the head of the euro zone finance ministers, has talked privately about how exhausting the past two years have been, telling colleagues about the need to get fit and smoke less.
Perhaps only Finland's prime minister, Jyrki Katainen, who turned 40 earlier this month, manages to look as if the crisis is not unduly stressing him -- but that may be because he often has a relaxing sauna before meetings, aides suggest.