Michelle Obama Accidentally Broke Royal Protocol with Queen Elizabeth

Former Frist Lady of the United States Michelle Obama recalled the time she broke royal protocol by putting an arm around the Queen of England and reveals if she would have done anything differently.

Obama became the subject of worldwide uproar in 2009 after she side-hugged Queen Elizabeth during her first meeting with the Royal. On Sunday, during the London stop of her “Becoming” book tour, Obama reminisced about the event with British fans at the O2 arena, Daily Mail reports.


“Yikes! Sorry guys,” she joked before attending to questions about whether she would have done anything differently.

“What is true among world leaders is that there are people who handle protocol, and usually the people they're representing don't want all that protocol. So you wonder well who are you doing this for because they don't want it, we don't want it. But it's just the way things are. So I don't know that I could have done anything differently because it was a natural human reaction.”


The “Let’s Move!” initiator also addressed her infamous hug in her best-selling memoir, “Becoming.”

“I couldn’t have known it in the moment, but I was committing what would be deemed an epic faux pas,” Obama wrote. “I’d touched the Queen of England, which I’d soon learn was apparently not done.”

The former first lady revealed in her book that the “hug” had been prompted by her conversation with the Queen on an unlikely topic: their shoes.


According to the Harvard Law School graduate, Queen Elizabeth showed concern about her [Obama’s] shoes hurting and confessed that hers hurt as well.

“Forget that she sometimes wore a diamond crown and that I’d flown to London on the presidential jet; we were just two tired ladies oppressed by our shoes,” Obama continued in the memoir. “I then did what’s instinctive to me anytime I feel connected to a new person, which is to express my feelings outwardly.”

Pictures from the 2009 event also show the Queen letting go of royal protocol and placing an arm around Obama, something the latter acknowledged in her book.


Since its November 13 release, Obama’s “Becoming” has scored an instant New York Times bestseller status and hit No. 1 on Amazon even before its publication date. Also, according to Daily Mail, the book's publisher said it could become the biggest-selling autobiography ever.


Obama’s initial “Becoming” tour ended in December, but the memoir’s performance necessitated an extension.

The new tour schedule, which started on February 8, will see the Chicago-born lawyer visit various locations across Europe and North America, including the U.S, Canada, UK, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, France, and the Netherlands.

Following her London stop, Obama will next be in Paris on April 16 and Amsterdam on April 17. The “Becoming” tour train will come to a halt at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee on May 12.

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