We regret to report that Mr Keating's colourful argot is not appreciated one bit by Malaysia, Indonesia's smaller neighbour. Last week, an unfortunate bit of Keating lip set off a trade war between Canberra and Kuala Lumpur. He called Malaysia's Prime Minister, Mahathir Mohamad, a 'recalcitrant' for boycotting the Apec summit in Seattle. Recalcitrant is not a word we would expect to find in Mr Keating's lexicon of abuse, but then Malaysia under Dr Mahathir has always been a sensitive place.Reuse content
WE TOLD YOU earlier this month how impressed President Suharto of Indonesia was with Paul Keating's fine parliamentary phrases - scumbag, sleazeball, gutless spiv . . . that sort of thing - and had ordered a series of video highlights of the Australian prime minister's despatch box performances to enlighten Indonesia's rather tame legislators.