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Here's A Short List Of Times Britain's New Foreign Secretary Was The Best Diplomat Ever

Boris Johnson, a guiding light for diplomatic relations.

Originally posted on
Updated on

1. That time he bailed on his bar tab when visiting Kurdistan in Iraq.

Congrats @BorisJohnson on becoming UK @foreignoffice Secretary. We look forward to your return to #Kurdistan #Boris

The Foreign Office, which he's now in charge of, was left to work it out, "even though his office was told that these would have to be settled in cash before he left." He also attempted to get to sightsee on the frontlines against ISIS.

2. That time he compared Hillary Clinton to One Flew Over a Cuckoo's Nest's Nurse Ratched.

United Artists

“She represents, on the face of it, everything I came into politics to oppose: not just a general desire to raise taxes and nationalise things, but an all-round purse-lipped political correctness," he wrote in the Telegraph back in 2007. “She’s got dyed blonde hair and pouty lips, and a steely blue stare, like a sadistic nurse in a mental hospital.”

(He apologized to her during a visit to New York last year.)

3. That time he actually said the problem with Africa is "not that we were once in charge, but that we are not in charge any more."

Mike Hutchings / Reuters

It was part of a whole article from 2002 in The Spectator, where he was formerly editor, about how Brits shouldn't really feel all that bad about colonialism.

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4. That time he literally compared the European Union to Hitler.

Ian Forsyth / Getty Images

"Napoleon, Hitler, various people tried this out, and it ends tragically," Johnson told British newspaper the Sunday Telegraph, where "it" refers to building a united Europe. "The EU is an attempt to do this by different methods."

6. That time he wrote a filthy limerick about Turkish president Recep Erdogan.

Adem Altan / AFP / Getty Images

Here's the full thing, which by the way he wrote THIS YEAR:

There was a young fellow from Ankara
Who was a terrific wankerer
Till he sowed his wild oats
With the help of a goat
But he didn’t even stop to thankera.

7. The time he said that "part-Kenyan" President Obama had an "ancestral dislike of the British Empire."

Jonathan Ernst / Reuters

The row began when Obama backed Britain remaining in the European Union and escalated when Johnson wrote an article for The Sun in which he lambasted Obama for moving a bust of Winston Churchill out of the Oval Office. Really. Obama responded that he loves Churchill and basically subtweeted Johnson instead of calling him out directly.

8. That time he was ~weird~ and kinda insulting towards China over ping-pong.

Jewel Samad / AFP / Getty Images

"I say this respectfully to our Chinese hosts, who have excelled so magnificently at Ping-pong," he said during the handover of the Olympics from Beijing to London back in 2008. "Ping-pong was invented on the dining tables of England in the 19th century and it was called Wiff-waff!”

(Literally nobody had any idea what he was on about.)

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9. That time he made a joke about Papua New Guinea and cannibalistic orgies.

Christopher Furlong / Getty Images

"For 10 years we in the Tory Party have become used to Papua New Guinea-style orgies of cannibalism and chief-killing," he wrote in an op-ed in the Telegraph in 2006. He later said he would "add Papua New Guinea to [his] global itinerary of apology."

10. That time he referred to the UK's former colonial subjects as "piccaninnies" with "watermelon smiles."

Jack Taylor / Getty Images

"What a relief it must be for Blair to get out of England. It is said that the Queen has come to love the Commonwealth, partly because it supplies her with regular cheering crowds of flag-waving piccaninnies," he wrote in 2002.

He later apologized and said he's not racist — something he also had to do and say regarding an article claiming black people have lower IQ than other races that was published when he was editing The Spectator.

11. That time he said basically anything about women.

Tom Shaw / Getty Images

"Voting Tory will cause your wife to have bigger breasts and increase your chances of owning a BMW M3," he once claimed. Johnson also once joked that women only go to college to find husbands, in the all-too-recent year of 2013.

He's also penned an ode to beach volleyball that read: "As I write these words there are semi-naked women playing beach volleyball in the middle of the Horse Guards Parade immortalised by Canaletto. They are glistening like wet otters and the water is splashing off the brims of the spectators’ sou’westers."

CORRECTION

Boris Johnson's award-winning limerick about the Turkish president referred to Erdogan as a wanker who performed a sex act with a goat. A previous version of this article included the prompt for the poetry contest, which included a different sex act, also with a goat.

Hayes Brown is a world news editor and reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.

Contact Hayes Brown at hayes.brown@buzzfeed.com.

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