- By Joshua Keating
Joshua Keating was an associate editor at Foreign Policy
World leaders, they’re just like us… only more petty and childish apparently. Reuters pulls this tidbit out of former President George W. Bush’s forthcoming book, Decision Points:
Bush says he had introduced then-Russian President Putin to his Scottish terrier, Barney, on a visit to the U.S. presidential retreat, Camp David.
Putin returned the favor when Bush visited Russia and Putin was giving him a tour of the grounds of his dacha.
"A big black Labrador came charging across the lawn. With a twinkle in his eye, Vladimir said, ‘Bigger, stronger, faster than Barney,’" Bush writes. A copy of the book was obtained by Reuters.
Bush says he later told the story to the Canadian prime minister, Stephen Harper, who replied: "You’re lucky he only showed you his dog."
Putin actually seems not to have done his homework here. Bush, who made his White House staff star in a series of truly painful Christmas videos starring Barney and Miss Beazley, clearly wasn’t embarrassed by his dogs. The old labrador retriever trick worked like a charm on Angela Merkel, but to really freak out Bush, Putin should have proposed a horseback ride.
Update: It seems FP‘s Preeti Aroon was all over this story way back in 2007.