Leaks Bare What Envoys Really Think of Leaders

Painful insults abound in leaked cables
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 29, 2010 4:33 AM CST
Updated Nov 29, 2010 7:53 AM CST
Putin and Berlusconi are close, but late nights have taken their toll on the "feckless, vain, and ineffective," a diplomat writes.   (AP Photo/RIA-Novosti, Alexei Nikolsky, Pool)

(Newser) – The fallout from the WikiLeaks release of US embassy cables is only just beginning, but one thing is clear: there are going to be some seriously embarrassed diplomats. Some insults to world leaders, as collected by the Telegraph:

  • Nicolas Sarkozy: The French president is an "emperor with no clothes," with a “thin-skinned” and “authoritarian” manner.
  • Angela Merkel: The German chancellor "avoids risks and is rarely creative."
  • Moammar Gadhafi: The Libyan leader can't travel without what one diplomat described as his “voluptuous blond” Ukrainian nurse.

  • Hamid Karzai: The Afghan president is “an extremely weak man who did not listen to facts but was instead easily swayed by anyone who came to report even the most bizarre stories or plots against him.”
  • Silvio Berlusconi: The Italian prime minister is "physically and politically weak” in Italy, and "feckless, vain, and ineffective" on the European stage. "His “frequent late nights and penchant for partying hard mean he does not get sufficient rest," a diplomat observes.
  • Kim Jong Il: The "flabby old chap" ruling North Korea has suffered "physical and psychological trauma" as a result of his stroke.
  • Vladimir Putin and Dmitry Medvedev: Russian prime minister Putin's macho, "alpha dog" style has helped him bond with Berlusconi, but President Medvedev—officially the senior partner in government—"plays Robin” to Putin's Batman.

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