If he is Insisting on Hug, Slap his Leering Mug

…well, that’s what my Father would have said, had he been around to witness the smarmy perviness (thanks for submitting this to the news tab, KXB!):

For those who (like me) can’t see wideo at work, here’s what went down:

Sarah Palin and the foreign leaders she has met with in New York have said very little to reporters over the last two days, but the press happened to be in the room on Wednesday for one eyebrow-raising exchange, as the new president of Pakistan lavished praise on Palin’s looks. [CNN]

But first, his wing-woman conveniently buttered her up:

On entering a room filled with several Pakistani officials this afternoon, Palin was immediately greeted by Sherry Rehman, the country’s Information Minister.
“And how does one keep looking that good when one is that busy?,” Rehman asked, drawing friendly laughter from the room when she complimented Palin.
“Oh, thank you,” Palin said. [CNN]

Cue goosebumps from Uncle Slimey:

Pakistan’s recently-elected president, Asif Ali Zardari, entered the room seconds later. Palin rose to shake his hand, saying she was “honored” to meet him.
Zardari then called her “gorgeous” and said: “Now I know why the whole of America is crazy about you.”
“You are so nice,” Palin said, smiling. “Thank you.”
A handler from Zardari’s entourage then told the two politicians to keep shaking hands for the cameras.
“If he’s insisting, I might hug,” Zardari said. Palin smiled politely. [CNN]

CLASSY.

Blogger Teeth Maestro has this to say:

I do not mean to suggest that this is in anyway a crime, but being the President of Islamic Republic of Pakistan there are some protocols that should be adhered to in an effort to uplift the respect and dignity of Pakistan and to the office with which he has been assigned to. [link]

Such protocols or standards shouldn’t just be adhered to by the leader of Pakistan, they should be expected of any leader, period. Palin looked uneasy and Zardari seemed sleazy; I don’t think this is what McCain had in mind, when he sent his vice-MILF to New York. Silly Republicans, it ain’t sex and The City* for nothing.

::

*One of my pet peeves used to be the lazy and inaccurate substitution of “in” for “at”, when it came to the title of that now defunct series which became an awful movie. AND. AND. It was always AND, damn it.

80 thoughts on “If he is Insisting on Hug, Slap his Leering Mug

  1. Didn’t Shaukat Aziz once actually seriously hit on Condi Rice? Comparitively, there isn’t very much inappropriate in what Zardari (that old dog) said to Palin.

    I find use of the slur “vice-MILF much more offensive.

  2. First there is nothing wrong in Pakistani President’s conduct.

    If the French President does it, then it is chivalrous, and “French“.

    If a Brown man does it, then it is not adhering protocol, come on.

    When did John F. Kennedey adhered to any protocol?

    Now to Sherry Rehman, woman compliment other woman all the time.

  3. Didn’t Shaukat Aziz once actually seriously hit on Condi Rice? Comparitively, there isn’t very much inappropriate in what Zardari (that old dog) said to Palin.

    There was also a rumor that Condi Rice and Canadian Foreign Minister had dates…..and everyone was going ga ga

  4. 1 · goenkar said

    Didn’t Shaukat Aziz once actually seriously hit on Condi Rice?

    Sharon couldn’t stop staring at her legs

  5. With Palin, Yulia Tymoshenko, and Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, there’s definitely an epidemic going on. Back in the day it was only Bhutto.

  6. I’m still trying to figure out why people think Sarah Palin is fine. Just because she’s a woman doesn’t mean she looks good. Michelle Obama is 1000 times finer any day of the week.

  7. 2 · Kush Tandon said

    If a Brown man does it, then it is not adhering protocol, come on.

    Well, that Bush-Merkel shoulder rub down didn’t go over too well. The rule is, if you make such a move, you must succeed; otherwise its dorkland for you. This may not sound fair but men who whine life isn’t fair are dorks anyway.

  8. 6 · nation of islam said

    I’m still trying to figure out why people think Sarah Palin is fine.

    Personally, I’m bigger on a power suit than a bikini. other than that, great legs, good thick lips, and nice cheekbones.

  9. This Pakistani ABD thinks…

    There is absolutely something wrong with the Pakistani President’s behavior.

    First of all, he is not French, he’s the leader of a nation that is the birthchild of political Islam, so we have a right to take him to task for it.

    His actions not only serve to underline the absolute hypocrisy with which women are treated within his nation, but they are indicative of the utter lack of respect he bears toward Ms. Palin. I seriously doubt that any eminent woman in Pakistan with whom he has me have been greeted with such slobbering. And I say with even more conviction, that any eminent woman in Pakistan would not have tolerated it for a moment.

    Disgraceful.

  10. 2 · Kush Tandon said

    First there is nothing wrong in Pakistani President’s conduct. If the French President does it, then it is chivalrous, and “French“.

    I don’t think it is cool when a French PM does it too. Too many people around the world give way too much importance to the French. Seriously, just treat them on the merits of their current achievements, not on 1789′s or pre-1600 happenings.

    What I am particularly not happy is how many posters are on cnn are turning this against her. Zardari needs to grow up and show some professionalism. Too bad, she did not show her barracuda teeth.

  11. 6 · nation of islam said

    I’m still trying to figure out why people think Sarah Palin is fine.

    It has more to do with her “What? You want a piece of me?” Scrappy Doo attitude and the way she carries herself than her looks. She’s got a brash, sassy, confident swagger (“Who wants to play stump the candidate? Lay it me!”)–totally hawt. And her glasses make her look smart (even if she’s not), so she’s (apparently) got two qualities that make some of us swoon–confidence and brains (err, glasses).

    7 · Manju said

    Well, that Bush-Merkel shoulder rub down didn’t go over too well. The rule is, if you make such a move, you must succeed; otherwise its dorkland for you.

    Word. It might be dorky and sleazy, and definitely comparable to Bush-Merkel, but I’m really trying to be offended and just failing.

  12. 2 · Kush Tandon said

    When did John F. Kennedey adhered to any protocol?

    i chased tail with jack kennedy, i jacked kennedy, kennedy was a friend of mine. and zardari, sir, is no kennedy.

  13. Just watched the video. Zardari is waay too creepy. Palin handled it very well (with just the faintest look of disgust–discernable only to the disgusted). I think with these kind of diplomatic skills, she’ll make a fine politician. Anyway, Palin just earned her first tiny crumb of a brownie point from me. Still voting for Obama if I get my oversees ballot on time.

    Kush Tandon @#2

    If a Brown man does it, then it is not adhering protocol, come on. When did John F. Kennedey adhered to any protocol?

    Such attention from a young, rakish brown boy would be a compliment. From a fat, aging Zardari it is just sleazy. So really, as with everything in life, you have to know who you are and what you can get away with. And by this argument, yes, it would have been different had it been JFK. JFK was at least as charming and good looking as Palin. Sorry, I didn’t make up the rules and brown boys (like many of those on SM) pout way too much.

  14. 16 · Harbeer said

    6 · nation of islam said
    I’m still trying to figure out why people think Sarah Palin is fine.
    It has more to do with her “What? You want a piece of me?” Scrappy Doo attitude and the way she carries herself than her looks. She’s got a brash, sassy, confident swagger (“Who wants to play stump the candidate? Lay it me!”)–totally hawt. And her glasses make her look smart (even if she’s not), so she’s (apparently) got two qualities that make some of us swoon–confidence and brains (err, glasses). 7 · Manju said
    Well, that Bush-Merkel shoulder rub down didn’t go over too well. The rule is, if you make such a move, you must succeed; otherwise its dorkland for you.
    Word. It might be dorky and sleazy, and definitely comparable to Bush-Merkel, but I’m really trying to be offended and just failing.

    for a full and scary account of her sax appeal, look to a Rawlsetarian from the midwest for the answers.

    Let’s not all forget that Palin is accustomed to having swarthy men lay hands on her. I believe Zardari was the buddha-worshipping practitioner of witchcraft against which pastor Muthee so presciently warded Palin. It’s curious Muthee didn’t pick up on the all the grease and false bonhomie that Zardari seems to perpetually exude.

    a slap would have been great. the image alone could destroy a political figure from a patriarchal society.

  15. It looks like Mr.Zardari is pretty insistent on hugging people…He wanted to hug PM Manmohan Singh as well! Maybe he thinks that by hugging everybody, he can make all of Pakistan’s problems go away. :) Seriously though, I am not too sure if I would call him ‘sleazy’ based on his meeting with Palin…but that’s my opinion.

  16. Not particularly sleazy, but certainly not impressive, and also unbecoming of a leader. Looks like he cannot stay composed in the presence of women, which bodes badly for him if he ever has to negotiate with one.

  17. Well, besides her looks and her way with a dead moose, what else is there to compliment about Sarah Palin? Certainly not her Katie Couric-answering skills, knowledge of McCain’s record or concern for rape victims.

  18. First of all, he is not French, he’s the leader of a nation that is the birthchild of political Islam, so we have a right to take him to task for it.

    Umm, Pakistan needs to take him to task for a lot bigger things and it will be better served focusing on those things. For example, Zardari has been known to have said when asked how he plans to keep funding subsidies for farmers in Punjab that he will print more notes!! Small wonder the economy of Pakistan is such a mess.

  19. Of all the dignitaries with whom Palin was supposed to meet, there is footage of all the meetings except with PM Manmohan Singh. Did she actually meet him or did he get off lightly? It was an “interesting” assortment of leaders she was scheduled to meet and India seemed the odd man out of the bunch.

  20. With Palin, Yulia Tymoshenko, and Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, there’s definitely an epidemic going on. Back in the day it was only Bhutto.

    from the National Post. the font of all politicl knowledge, the maxim magazine recently anointed the hottest political babes world wide. you vill be proud to know a certain brown mp from brampton made it to #3.

  21. 2 · Kush Tandon said

    First there is nothing wrong in Pakistani President’s conduct

    I thought that feminists don’t like to be complimented for their looks since its devalues (or places more premium on appearances than ) other aspects of their personality/work etc. But I have also seen this rule being violated a lot in media/movies. So maybe some feminists of SM can clarify ?

  22. This whole thing is an example of how ‘controlled photo-ops’ and ‘managed media profiles’ can go out of hand. Remember that the McCain campaign has tried its best to shield Palin from reporters and serious questioning. It tried to do the same with her meetings with ‘world leaders’, except that the media protested, so it relented to allow this non-access.

    On the other hand, Pakistan is trying to ‘get a good press’ for Zardari. Normally there isn’t a live mike at a photo-op, often even video cameras are not allowed – still pictures only.

    These two things conspired. Palin’s handlers thought a live mike plus video at the Zardari ‘photo-op’ would get them off the media hook for blocking substantive acces to Palin. Zardari’s thought of this ‘media op’ as a way to satiate the enormous appetite now arisen in Pakistan for media feeds, substantive or trivial.

    Combined with Zardari’s flubbed ad-libs, the knives that are out for him in Pakistan and within the Pakistani media, the widespread availability of video editing software, and the youtube phenomenon – we have this. The perception of the event has become more the news than the event itself. As ever, we are always ready to believe in the ‘desi sleazy uncle’, whatever be the facts, oblivious to how even a ‘live video feed’ can combine with pre-existing prejudices to shape the perception of the event. This thing will play on on and on in Pakistan, cut, edited, interspersed with biting comment, decontextualized further to reveal only his grin, or only his ‘leer’. It will be a staple of Pakistani political humor shows (like the Pakistani SNL – Hum sab Ummeed say hain) for the next number of years. The whole thing is an example of an ‘unconspired’ conspiracy, or how things conspire all by themselves. The whole thing looks bad enough in a ‘secular, Western’ setting, the faux outrage this will raise in an Islamic setting will be a thing unto itself.

    I myself posted the video on ultrabrown last night – I was stunned to actually find it on youtube, all edited nicely to fit into a 30 second clip, sitting right there, barely a few hours after the event. By contrast, there is almost no video clip of Manmohan Singh meeting Palin, which I spent a lot of time also looking for! His handlers probably only let in still photographers, somehow one of them was in the Getty pool, so we have a record of the event. So he goes home looking like he ‘tutored’ Palin on India, the scholar-Prime Minister he, and Indian media get to make ‘sophisticated’ puns (‘Palin-drome’) about the event.

    Media management is a fine art, one can certainly get it right by chance, and wrong by being too clever by half.

  23. Kush, it was pretty smarmy, no matter what/whom you compare it to. She has few defenses, though, and that was clear as well.

  24. What is yuck-pervy is that Zardari obviously thought it was his prerogative to “hug” if he felt like it– and who knows what hugging covers, in his mind? What will he do with Bristol’s pregnancy?

  25. 39 · Amrita said

    What is yuck-pervy is that Zardari obviously thought it was his prerogative to “hug” if he felt like it-

    Well. Of course we’ll read things into that ‘offer’. But he hugged Manmohan Singh too. Twice. And he hugged Nawaz Sharif right after he gave his inaugural speech to the Pakistani Parliament last Saturday. I thought they were both fine gestures. As this one might well have been, if we didn’t second-guess too much. But since we do, he was wise not to act on the offer.

    As an aside, there is a semi-religious quality to the once-on-each-side hug that is widely prevalent throughout most of Southern Europe and the Middle East, both in Catholic and in Islamic-influenced cultures, as also in some South Asian cultures.

  26. “By contrast, there is almost no video clip of Manmohan Singh meeting Palin, which I spent a lot of time also looking for! His handlers probably only let in still photographers, somehow one of them was in the Getty pool, so we have a record of the event. So he goes home looking like he ‘tutored’ Palin on India, the scholar-Prime Minister he, and Indian media get to make ‘sophisticated’ puns (‘Palin-drome’) about the event.”

    Well, better than looking like a cornered world leader in a pantomime. So there are photos of Palin with Singh. Surprisingly, and showing a modicum of good sense, the Indian media that I checked out put this bit of stage management behind other priorities like the nuclear deal and the global financial crisis. There’s nothing wrong with him meeting her, but given that all the other leaders she met with have this reputation – warranted or unwarranted – of being “puppets”, it’s wise for the Indian media/Singh not to have given undue focus to this meeting.

  27. 30 · Ardy said

    First of all, he is not French, he’s the leader of a nation that is the birthchild of political Islam, so we have a right to take him to task for it.
    Umm, Pakistan needs to take him to task for a lot bigger things and it will be better served focusing on those things. For example, Zardari has been known to have said when asked how he plans to keep funding subsidies for farmers in Punjab that he will print more notes!! Small wonder the economy of Pakistan is such a mess.

    Absolutely right. But, since the post was about a leering Mr. Ten Percent, I chose not to digress. But, you seem to have done that for me. ::Smile::

  28. 36 · chachaji said

    The perception of the event has become more the news than the event itself. As ever, we are always ready to believe in the ‘desi sleazy uncle’, whatever be the facts, oblivious to how even a ‘live video feed’ can combine with pre-existing prejudices to shape the perception of the event…The whole thing is an example of an ‘unconspired’ conspiracy, or how things conspire all by themselves.

    Chachaji droppin science, ba-bam!

  29. As much as I despise Zardari, this is trivial. The guy lost his wife a few months ago and he just took the opportunity to hit on a hot female politician. When you’re an adult, these things happen.

  30. There is absolutely something wrong with the Pakistani President’s behavior

    . and not just for his focusing on the Palin’s looks but also for the sweaty, awkward handshake and slicked hair – and I’m not talking about Manju this time.

    Of all the dignitaries with whom Palin was supposed to meet, there is footage of all the meetings except with PM Manmohan Singh. Did she actually meet him or did he get off lightly? It was an “interesting” assortment of leaders she was scheduled to meet and India seemed the odd man out of the bunch.

    When speed dating, you’ll notice there’s always an odd man.

  31. Waah — A rogue SM Intern deleted a hilarious, tongue-in-cheek, comment about the unbridled masculinity of the Pakistani male. So funny that I bookmarked it. And now its gone.

    Put it back, boys and girls. SMsters can take a joke…

  32. “and Indian media get to make ‘sophisticated’ puns (‘Palin-drome’) about the event”

    More like ‘Palin-drone’. Everyone would sleep when mr.singh is speaking…zzz :)

  33. If you had a “mental xray machine” it would read this

    Sarah Palin’s mind – “which brown country is this again?”

    Zardari’s mind – “thank god this suit jacket is long enough to cover my boner”