Wednesday, October 19, 2005

TIME FOR A new section called "Zapaterisms" in Slate:
Spanish prime minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero said in a wide-ranging radio interview that he has never had an interest in meeting Cuban president Fidel Castro.

It came after Castro failed to arrive at the Ibero-American summit held in Spain at the weekend with leaders of Spain, Portugal and Latin American countries.

"I have never had either the passion, or the interest, or the circumstances of meeting him, it's very curious, I guess these are the necessary paradoxes that lead one to be prime minister of the government," Zapatero said.

Say that again? No, this is not a too bad translation; see Spanish coverage here. If the Spanish article reflects literally what Zapatero said, though, there are two minor points: "curious" should be understood not in the sense of "inquisitive", which is the more usual one in English, but of "odd", which is how "curioso" would be normally understood in than context in Spanish. Second, the last bit of his sentence was "supongo que estas son las paradojas necesarias que lleva ser presidente del Gobierno", which would be much more accurately translated as "I guess these are the necessary paradoxes that come with being prime minister of the government". Slightly less silly. Only slightly.

Oh, and contrary to what the government-owned EFE news agency implies, Zapatero was not dealing a snub to Castro for no showing. He has 100% of his snub-dealing capabilities reserved for Bush and sometimes Blair. No; what he was doing was covering his, well, that, because there are more and more people who are realizing that his leaning towards the Cuban dictator smells funny.

UPDATE. And then there's this.

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