Leader of the Free World
“REPORTER: So what are your outlook and hopes for U.S.-Malaysia relations, and especially with Malaysia being the 10th largest trading partner?
DUBYA: First of all, I do believe we ought to have — take this notion of trade and have meaningful discussions with a potential free trade agreement with Malaysia. Secondly, I respect Prime Minister Badawi, admire his leadership. When his wife died I tried to call him early just to let him know I cared about him.
REPORTER: He has remarried.
DUBYA: Has he? Good. I’ll congratulate him. Thanks for giving me that heads-up. Don’t put that in the article that you had to tell me that. You can put it in there if you want. I’ll be glad to — I’m going to congratulate him. That’s neat.
[NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL AIDE] DENNIS WILDER: You did, sir.
WILDER: You did congratulate him.
DUBYA: Exactly. I’m going to congratulate him again. I’ll double the congratulations. That’s right, I did write him a note. I forgot. Did I call him or write him a note?
WILDER: You wrote him a note.
DUBYA: That’s right, yes. Sent him a couple flowers. Anyway, Malaysia is an interesting example of how a free society can deal with movements that could conceivably change and alter the nature of the free society.
— Dubya highlights his close rapport with (and flawless memory of) Malyasian Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi in round table interview with foreign journalists, White House, Aug. 30, 2007″