“So, Mr President, this may be my last visit to you during your presidency, and let me say that thank you very much. The people of India deeply love you.”
I honestly do not understand how these politicians decide for the whole country.
“Mr President, I know how busy you are with problems relating to the management of the financial crisis. That despite all the enormous pressures on your time you have found it possible to receive me is something I deeply appreciate, deeply value.”
As though he does not eat and drink and walk his dog because of the financial crisis. This is just so Indian...hum naacheez ke liye waqt nikaala and blah.
“In the last four-and-a-half years that I have been prime minister, I have been the recipient of your generosity, your affection, your friendship. It means a lot to me and to the people of India. And when the history is written, I think it will be recorded that President George W Bush played a historic role in bringing our two democracies closer to each other.”
When did all this happen? Does getting the nuclear deal going bring democracies closer? When Bush’s history is written India will get a small mention. And if our PM has been the recipient of all this affection and friendship then he should stop there. No need to bring the people of India in.
Having said that and replayed the quotes for you, it is time to analyse this picture. The signals could well be different.
Bush seems overwhelmed, he is facing down and from the way his shoulders and arm are positioned he is clearly taking this seriously, almost desperately.
Now Manmohan Singh is a different player. He has a smile on his face, but observe his hands. Neither is completely touching Bush; one is bent towards his back – a reluctant gesture with the watch clearly visible. Which means the loyalty is timed.
The other hand appears to be extended elsewhere. It could mean Singh is ready for the next person in line.
Of course, you will say that a photograph is clicked in a split-second and this could have been taken just before Singh had wrapped his arms around Bush. But that would apply to Bush as well.
And a lot happens in split seconds. A lot.
Height of audacity:
Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi wants those who ‘spread lies’ about the people behind the train carnage to apologise to the people of his state.