Shirts-off! On back of G20 Putin-Abbott showdown, 6 pack parade of Soviet & Mideast political heavies

Published November 18th, 2014 - 16:21 GMT

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Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott closed the G20 summit Sunday, 16 November, by detailing promises made by world leaders to boost their respective economies by at least 2.1% by 2018, for an impressive $2 trillion total uptick. Good for global economics. Much of the summit had focused on Russian President Vladimir Putin's position on the crisis in Ukraine, but there’s scant news on that other international confrontation: who won the now-infamous “shirtfront” challenge?

Tony "Tough Talk" Abbott had thrown down the gauntlet (promising to shed his shirt too) in a manly assets challenge with "Virile" Vladimir Putin. And we thought Latin America held the winning hand on machismo! Continue reading below »

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Abbott versus Putin: who would win in a shirtless face off? Both men boast sizeable pecs and larger than life egos, but would Putin really stand a chance against Abbott’s Iron Man trained bod? And it takes a real man to pull off a hot pink swim cap.
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Image 1 of 12:  1 / 12Abbott versus Putin: who would win in a shirtless face off? Both men boast sizeable pecs and larger than life egos, but would Putin really stand a chance against Abbott’s Iron Man trained bod? And it takes a real man to pull off a hot pink swim cap.

Enlarge
The much-hyped battle between the two leaders kicked off a photoshopping field day with many imagining how the brawl would take place. It also sparked a digital debate: do you prefer your leaders hirsute or fuzz-free?
Reduce

Image 2 of 12:  2 / 12The much-hyped battle between the two leaders kicked off a photoshopping field day with many imagining how the brawl would take place. It also sparked a digital debate: do you prefer your leaders hirsute or fuzz-free?

Enlarge
Looking good, King Hussein! Jordan’s former leader was major eye candy. An avid sportsman, his passion for flying, fishing, boating and dancing kept him in royal condition throughout his too-short life.
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Image 3 of 12:  3 / 12Looking good, King Hussein! Jordan’s former leader was major eye candy. An avid sportsman, his passion for flying, fishing, boating and dancing kept him in royal condition throughout his too-short life.

Enlarge
Saddam Hussein appeared consistently fit and trim. It’s not known what his preferred workout routine was, but he is alleged to have had five wives. Say no more.
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Image 4 of 12:  4 / 12Saddam Hussein appeared consistently fit and trim. It’s not known what his preferred workout routine was, but he is alleged to have had five wives. Say no more.

Enlarge
Last year, The Jerusalem Post ranked Benjamin Netanyahu third on the list of the 'Most Influential Jews in the World'. It’s near-impossible to gauge the “build” on this former architecture student: his wet-t-shirted float in the Dead Sea is the closest we can get!
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Image 5 of 12:  5 / 12Last year, The Jerusalem Post ranked Benjamin Netanyahu third on the list of the "Most Influential Jews in the World". It’s near-impossible to gauge the “build” on this former architecture student: his wet-t-shirted float in the Dead Sea is the closest we can get!

Enlarge
Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal may be as bashful as Bibi, as His Highness also favors public modesty. Last year, Forbes listed Al-Waleed as the 26th-richest man in the world, with an estimated net worth of $20 billion.  He argued it was more like $26 billion.  Keep your shirt on, Prince! What’s a few billion between friends?
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Image 6 of 12:  6 / 12Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal may be as bashful as Bibi, as His Highness also favors public modesty. Last year, Forbes listed Al-Waleed as the 26th-richest man in the world, with an estimated net worth of $20 billion. He argued it was more like $26 billion. Keep your shirt on, Prince! What’s a few billion between friends?

Enlarge
Hubba hubba! Dubai’s Crown Prince has no problem flashing his toned stomach. Grab your dirty t-shirts - you could do laundry on these washboard abs!
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Image 7 of 12:  7 / 12Hubba hubba! Dubai’s Crown Prince has no problem flashing his toned stomach. Grab your dirty t-shirts - you could do laundry on these washboard abs!

Enlarge
His Highness, Jordan’s King Abdullah cuts an imposing figure on the world stage, especially in these turmoiled times.  We’re happy to see it’s not all shoulder pads and bespoke tailoring!
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Image 8 of 12:  8 / 12His Highness, Jordan’s King Abdullah cuts an imposing figure on the world stage, especially in these turmoiled times. We’re happy to see it’s not all shoulder pads and bespoke tailoring!

Enlarge
Will the real Mahmoud Ahmadinejad please stand up?  Or maybe better that this spoof image of the Iranian President remains seated! Now we understand why plastic slipcovers were invented.
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Image 9 of 12:  9 / 12Will the real Mahmoud Ahmadinejad please stand up? Or maybe better that this spoof image of the Iranian President remains seated! Now we understand why plastic slipcovers were invented.

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I wish this were an option guys -- Morsi’s head planted on a topless woman for Femen too spoofy, eh spoof within spoof?
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Image 10 of 12:  10 / 12I wish this were an option guys -- Morsi’s head planted on a topless woman for Femen too spoofy, eh spoof within spoof?

Enlarge
Take it off! Wait, put it back on! We’d rather not see Leonid Brezhnev bare-chested. And  can someone please pull down an Iron Curtain to hide that barrel-belly?  Luckily, the end of the cold war seemed to incite the Russians to warm up to better fitness.
Reduce

Image 11 of 12:  11 / 12Take it off! Wait, put it back on! We’d rather not see Leonid Brezhnev bare-chested. And can someone please pull down an Iron Curtain to hide that barrel-belly? Luckily, the end of the cold war seemed to incite the Russians to warm up to better fitness.

Enlarge
Boris Yeltsin was the first President of the Russian Federation, serving from 1991 to 1999 when - in a surprise announcement - he resigned and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin took over as acting president. By some estimates, his approval ratings when leaving office were as low as 2%.  Maybe he should’ve kept his shirt on.
Reduce

Image 12 of 12:  12 / 12Boris Yeltsin was the first President of the Russian Federation, serving from 1991 to 1999 when - in a surprise announcement - he resigned and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin took over as acting president. By some estimates, his approval ratings when leaving office were as low as 2%. Maybe he should’ve kept his shirt on.

Enlarge

1

Abbott versus Putin: who would win in a shirtless face off? Both men boast sizeable pecs and larger than life egos, but would Putin really stand a chance against Abbott’s Iron Man trained bod? And it takes a real man to pull off a hot pink swim cap.

Image 1 of 12Abbott versus Putin: who would win in a shirtless face off? Both men boast sizeable pecs and larger than life egos, but would Putin really stand a chance against Abbott’s Iron Man trained bod? And it takes a real man to pull off a hot pink swim cap.

2

The much-hyped battle between the two leaders kicked off a photoshopping field day with many imagining how the brawl would take place. It also sparked a digital debate: do you prefer your leaders hirsute or fuzz-free?

Image 2 of 12The much-hyped battle between the two leaders kicked off a photoshopping field day with many imagining how the brawl would take place. It also sparked a digital debate: do you prefer your leaders hirsute or fuzz-free?

3

Looking good, King Hussein! Jordan’s former leader was major eye candy. An avid sportsman, his passion for flying, fishing, boating and dancing kept him in royal condition throughout his too-short life.

Image 3 of 12Looking good, King Hussein! Jordan’s former leader was major eye candy. An avid sportsman, his passion for flying, fishing, boating and dancing kept him in royal condition throughout his too-short life.

4

Saddam Hussein appeared consistently fit and trim. It’s not known what his preferred workout routine was, but he is alleged to have had five wives. Say no more.

Image 4 of 12Saddam Hussein appeared consistently fit and trim. It’s not known what his preferred workout routine was, but he is alleged to have had five wives. Say no more.

5

Last year, The Jerusalem Post ranked Benjamin Netanyahu third on the list of the 'Most Influential Jews in the World'. It’s near-impossible to gauge the “build” on this former architecture student: his wet-t-shirted float in the Dead Sea is the closest we can get!

Image 5 of 12Last year, The Jerusalem Post ranked Benjamin Netanyahu third on the list of the "Most Influential Jews in the World". It’s near-impossible to gauge the “build” on this former architecture student: his wet-t-shirted float in the Dead Sea is the closest we can get!

6

Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal may be as bashful as Bibi, as His Highness also favors public modesty. Last year, Forbes listed Al-Waleed as the 26th-richest man in the world, with an estimated net worth of $20 billion.  He argued it was more like $26 billion.  Keep your shirt on, Prince! What’s a few billion between friends?

Image 6 of 12Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal may be as bashful as Bibi, as His Highness also favors public modesty. Last year, Forbes listed Al-Waleed as the 26th-richest man in the world, with an estimated net worth of $20 billion. He argued it was more like $26 billion. Keep your shirt on, Prince! What’s a few billion between friends?

7

Hubba hubba! Dubai’s Crown Prince has no problem flashing his toned stomach. Grab your dirty t-shirts - you could do laundry on these washboard abs!

Image 7 of 12Hubba hubba! Dubai’s Crown Prince has no problem flashing his toned stomach. Grab your dirty t-shirts - you could do laundry on these washboard abs!

8

His Highness, Jordan’s King Abdullah cuts an imposing figure on the world stage, especially in these turmoiled times.  We’re happy to see it’s not all shoulder pads and bespoke tailoring!

Image 8 of 12His Highness, Jordan’s King Abdullah cuts an imposing figure on the world stage, especially in these turmoiled times. We’re happy to see it’s not all shoulder pads and bespoke tailoring!

9

Will the real Mahmoud Ahmadinejad please stand up?  Or maybe better that this spoof image of the Iranian President remains seated! Now we understand why plastic slipcovers were invented.

Image 9 of 12Will the real Mahmoud Ahmadinejad please stand up? Or maybe better that this spoof image of the Iranian President remains seated! Now we understand why plastic slipcovers were invented.

10

I wish this were an option guys -- Morsi’s head planted on a topless woman for Femen too spoofy, eh spoof within spoof?

Image 10 of 12I wish this were an option guys -- Morsi’s head planted on a topless woman for Femen too spoofy, eh spoof within spoof?

11

Take it off! Wait, put it back on! We’d rather not see Leonid Brezhnev bare-chested. And  can someone please pull down an Iron Curtain to hide that barrel-belly?  Luckily, the end of the cold war seemed to incite the Russians to warm up to better fitness.

Image 11 of 12Take it off! Wait, put it back on! We’d rather not see Leonid Brezhnev bare-chested. And can someone please pull down an Iron Curtain to hide that barrel-belly? Luckily, the end of the cold war seemed to incite the Russians to warm up to better fitness.

12

Boris Yeltsin was the first President of the Russian Federation, serving from 1991 to 1999 when - in a surprise announcement - he resigned and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin took over as acting president. By some estimates, his approval ratings when leaving office were as low as 2%.  Maybe he should’ve kept his shirt on.

Image 12 of 12Boris Yeltsin was the first President of the Russian Federation, serving from 1991 to 1999 when - in a surprise announcement - he resigned and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin took over as acting president. By some estimates, his approval ratings when leaving office were as low as 2%. Maybe he should’ve kept his shirt on.

Reduce

World media is mum on how that pectoral slap-down played out (Putin left the summit in a huff, claiming he needed to catch up on his sleep!), but we wondered what if Middle Eastern leaders indulged in the same silliness?

A quick spin on a search engine fleshed out far more than our imaginations could ever conjure up, and Photoshopped images filled the gaps that paparazzi failed to capture.  Putin may best some of his Rusky comrades in the skin department, but some of our regional specimens can quite respectfully hold their own.

Brace yourself for this revealing run through some Middle Eastern leaders who are too sexy for their shirts. After viewing this dirty dozen, you’ll want to offer up a word of appreciation to our lady leaders who wisely just stick to politics.

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