Que Sarah, Sarah

There has been sickeningly cloying reportage about the Sarah Palin and Asif Ali Zardari meeting. Even serious commentators are making an issue of it, quite forgetting that their own PM Yusuf Reza Gilani did a boob press on one of their leaders.

So what did Zardari do and why is he getting so much mileage? He called her gorgeous and added, “Now I know why the whole of America is crazy about you.”

Someone should ensure that this fellow gets lockjaw. Because this was a diplomatic boo-boo. He cannot speak for the whole of America, that too so close to the elections when anything can happen.

The unfortunate thing about Sarah is that she has a glamorous background. Ignore her politics for the moment, politics that stink, there is far too much sexist bias against her, and not unusually from feminists themselves.

Ms. Palin did not need a makeover, she came made-over. What about the rest who get all dolled up for the elections? What about the several changes in hairstyle and clothes that Hillary Clinton went through?

Did not Madeleine Albright once say that there was nothing that makeup could not fix?

What about German Chancellor Angela Merkel revealing that deep and dangerous cleavage?

Why must the political arena be left out from the way consent is manufactured and complete societies become guinea pigs?

In this Zardari-Palin cootchie-coo, what has been conveniently not highlighted is Information Minister Sherry Rehman’s words, “And how does one keep looking that good when one is that busy?”

How many people ask Obama how he can manage to be so fit? Did politicians talk about Bill Clinton’s always-fresh charm?

Not to be left behind, we had one report saying that “Palin left Manmohan Singh speechless, blushing”.

Nothing in the story reveals that.

Why would there be unease? What is going on? When we are not behaving like slaves of some woman from Alaska who may have qualities other than her looks, we are being patronising.

Look at this rubbish:

K P Nayar, the Chief Diplomatic Editor of the Telegraph, who is based in Washington D C for more than two decades, said: "It is in our own interest, it is Important to cultivate her, this is the time to cultivate her because until last year, she didn't have a passport. Last year, was the first time she acquired the passport. Yesterday, for the first time, she met the head of a government or the head of a state. So, she would be grateful that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh gave her some advice, treated her with respect, because the rest of the United States, and much of the world, is treating her with contempt -- that she is the greenhorn, the kind of person who should be a heartbeat away from the US presidency. We should cultivate people who matter in the US politics. We should not make a value judgment."

So we must respect people only if they have a passport? Sure, she had not met any head of state or government earlier, but what is this about Singh giving her advice and treating her with respect? Mr. Nayar, even after over 2 decades, you sound like a greenhorn yourself. What did you imagine – that the Indian PM would show contempt towards her? Again, such blanket pronouncements about how the world is treating her. It would be better if we looked inside our own house and see the contempt people show towards Sonia Gandhi.

Has Zardari shown contempt? No, he was being himself. A complete fruitcake. So was Sherry Rehman who, incidentally, belongs to the same league as Sarah.

End note

When an official aide to Zardari requested the two leaders to keep shaking hands for the benefit of the cameras, he told Palin, “If he is insisting, I might hug”.

Aw, the fellow thinks he is being a charmer. Yasser Arafat went ahead and embraced Indira Gandhi several years ago and no aide insisted.


  1. FV,

    "... this was a diplomatic boo-boo... Has Zardari shown contempt? No, he was being himself. A complete fruitcake."

    This is correct. A fruitcake. But he's the President of Pakistan for God's sake! He can't make boo-boos like that anymore. It's just disappointing his new job hasn't taught him any responsible behaviour in not objectifying a Vice-Presidential candidate, or any other female for that matter.

    What's the difference between him and Musharraf who said Pakistani women get raped to get foreign visas? His acts now reflect upon the Pakistani mindset and will create stereo-types just as Musharraf's did.

    Take Ayub Khan for example, who was a personal friend of Jacqueline Kennedy, or Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, who was close to the elegant Pehlavi ladies of Iran.

    These were both highly charismatic men, and hobnobbed with First-Ladies and powerful female figures all over the world. Did anyone hear of any such faux-pas' in their case?

    Sorry FV, but I really don't know if you're dismissing the act as trivial, or giving another dimension to it which I can't really grasp!

  2. FV:

    We need to have Aishwarya Rai as the next candidate for PM then. The Pak PM absolutely adores her and she'd make people like Sherry Rehman even more Jealous.

    And how about you for the I&B or Culture minister? At least, the censors will go for a walk. Sometimes I fear that someone like Mayawati or Jayalalitha may put the culture ministry under agriculture, assuming culture to be a subset of agriculture.

    Although I'd personally prefer FV as the Defence Minister -- Raksha Mantri, Bharat Sarkar? Why should it always go to a male candidate, although he might be a certified wimp like the present incumbent?

  3. Please, fruitcakes are at least sweet.

  4. FV
    Unfortunately, Zardari is the constant source of embarrassement for Pakistan. If a murderer, corrupt(Mr.10%), bastard, fuckked up rabid dog like Zardari could be a President of any country, then all of us could very well imagine about the rest of the population....

    Zardari is the pure reflection of Pakistani society and its population.....where boob suckers like Gilani are PMs and prostitues like sherry Rehman are there to represent the whole society...

    Zardari's genes reflected via this action....by getting out of control on his first visit to USA as President shows what sort of corrupt country Pakistan is....

    As for as Sarah Palin is, she is a savvy politician with graceful personna , she is shrewed and trust me she will never forgive this SEXUAL HARRASSEMENT by this drunkard shameless man, Zardari has absolutely no idea what shame is? what respect is? I believe Zardari is a pimp who will feel no shame in throwing his own daughters in front dogs....

    This man is is just a trash....BB left this world and left her stinky mess behind in the form of her trashy husband and trashy kids......

    The reason BB married this trashy man is that BB was also trashy.....

    Anyway, Sarah Palin when will be in White Hous will make sure that this trashy man Zardari should be FLUSHED DOWN the toilet for good....wait and see...

    If, you don't know a typical American woman which Zardari doesn't know.....then may God help Pakistan and Pakistanis....

    American Woman is absolutely opposite of Sherry Rehaman who got almost raped in open public and current Pakistani PM played with her boobs and she didn't raise an eyebrow and sumbit...........and embraced these men's slavery for the sake of power and money....

    American woman likes to play with her victims,but,never let the victims to play her........just wait and see..........


  5. Zeemax:

    Where have I dismissed the incident as trivial? I have always had the same opinion about Zardari (unlike some liberals in Pakistan who woke up to his 'democratic' potential.

    The only thing I did was to add on the Sarah as glamorous woman factor and how it results in reductionism by both MCPs and feminists.

    I will not go along with you regarding ZAB only because he did not make any such diplomatic faux pas. Respect ought not to be limited to gallant gestures.


    Why are you pitting Ash against Sherry, how sexist is that!

    Me in politics would result in even more boo-boos, but yes I would like to see a woman as raksha mantri. Anthony has surprised me. He used to be, well, very agriculture. I must reproduce my interview with him when he was CM of Kerala...


    Asif means 'forgiveness' and Aasif 'an able minister'...now you want to work around that?!

    Not everything sweet is nice.


    Welcome back...you were missed.

    That is one angry comment by you and I understand, though I suppose we can go slow on the language.

    I found your following statement interesting and true:

    "American woman likes to play with her victims,but,never let the victims to play her........just wait and see........."


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