It’s extremely rare for a top diplomat to offend so many people and countries in a single speech. Diplomats, after all, are supposed to be diplomatic. Even China’s infamous “wolf warrior” envoys have not managed such a feat. But take it from Josep Borrell, the European Union foreign policy chief; he’s done it. You may have already heard about his offending and now viral speech, in which he compares the EU to “a garden” and everywhere else “a jungle”. Guess you and I are all just wild animals! Ironically, he said it at the new European Diplomatic Academy in Bruges, Belgium, before its students. The furore and now his “sorry, not sorry” apology make for excellent teaching materials, as a negative example of what not to do or say for a diplomat. In an online post, he said he was sorry some people were offended. In other words, “too bad you’re so darned sensitive!” He has whipped up such a diplomatic storm that the United Arab Emirates has summoned the acting head of the EU delegation in the emirates to condemn his remarks as “inappropriate and discriminatory”. Critics have denounced his speech as “racist” and “imperialist”, “a time warp” back to the bad old days of European colonialism. China competition swamps all other EU relations with Beijing, top diplomat says After all, Borrell did say: “The rest of the world … is not exactly a garden. Most of the rest of the world is a jungle, and the jungle could invade the garden … The gardeners should take care of it, but [they] have to go to the jungle … Otherwise, the rest of the world will invade us, by different ways and means.” He repeated himself at the end: “Keep the garden, be good gardeners. But your duty will not be to take care of the garden itself but [of] the jungle outside.” In his speech, he also said a diplomat must always tell the truth, but not the whole truth. Does this extend to stating and quoting facts correctly? He was comparing himself to the great US diplomat George Kennan, as he said he was also “present at the creation” of an international rules-based order: “These memoirs are still considered the best insider account of the framing of the United States policy in the post-war [era].” Unless I am mistaken, I think he was referring to Present at the Creation , the famous memoirs of Dean Acheson, Harry Truman’s secretary of state.