Mugabe’s mouthpiece the Sunday Mail says President Jacob Zuma is erratic and disaster prone.
It criticises South Africa’s support for a no-fly zone over Libya. It says Zuma's duplicity is astounding and adds that, with such leaders, Africa is in mortal danger.
Under former president Thabo Mbeki, South Africa was accused of overlooking Mugabe’s despotism and human rights abuses.
As the new regional mediator on Zimbabwe, Zuma has been more circumspect.
Last week, he joined his counterparts from Namibia and Mozambique in expressing disappointment about delays in implementing the global political agreement between Mugabe and his rival and prime minister Morgan Tsvangirai.
They recorded their concern at a wave of political violence, arrests and intimidation ahead of elections expected later this year.
They did not mention Mugabe by name.
But pro-Mugabe media have reacted angrily to perceived regional pressure.
South Africa hit back - saying that, should Zimbabwe’s government wish to understand its position on Libya or any other matter, it should contact the South African government through the normal channels.