Tensions in Hamburg: The G20 Fractures

Tensions in Hamburg: The G20 Fractures

By Dr. Binoy Kampmark – Global Research, July 09, 2017

“I think it’s very clear that we could not reach consensus, but the differences were not papered over, they were clearly stated.” – Angela Merkel, BBC News, Jul 8, 2017

Such gatherings and summits are not always smooth, but on a planet bearing witness to a Trump presidency, there was always going to be a chance for more excitement at the G20 meet at Hamburg. Storm clouds have been brewing over economics, trade, and security, and these threatened to open with a deluge of resentment and threat. As proceedings continued, a general sense did eek through discussions: the G20 would have been far more appropriately termed the G19+1.    

Opening shots suggesting this discord came from Jean-Claude Juncker, who described the EU as being in “elevated battle mood” at the US slide towards protectionism, notably on promises to protect the steel industry.   [Read more]

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  • Clyde Duncan  On 07/10/2017 at 2:34 pm

    In G20 Photo, TRUMP Couldn’t Shove His Way To The Front and Centre Of World Leaders

    By Jason Le Miere | Newsweek

    We all know that President Donald Trump likes to get prime position in any photo opportunity.

    On his first visit to Europe in May, he appeared to shove the prime minister of Montenegro aside in order to get to the front of the pack of world leaders, providing yet another viral sensation for the internet.

    Unfortunately for Trump, he was unable to use the same tactics in Hamburg Friday as he posed for his first G20 photo.

    Instead, Trump was left on the outside looking in, to the far right of the group, only prevented from being on the very outer limits by French President Emmanuel Macron, who made a late move to stand next to the American leader.

    While it certainly would have been interesting, any attempts by Trump to ensure a more prime position in the shot likely would have proven futile.

    There are complex protocols that go into determining the positions of the world leaders in the official photo but it primarily comes down to how long they have been in office.

    Thus, Trump, who only entered the White House in January, was on the outskirts, with Macron, who became French president in May, to the outside of him. On the other side of the shot was South Korea’s newly elected leader, Moon Jae-In.

    Meanwhile, taking up prime position in the center of the photo was Germany’s Angela Merkel, who has held power in Germany since 2005.

    The protocol involved didn’t stop many from attaching plenty of symbolism to the U.S.A. president being on the outer reaches of world leaders, particularly when a year ago President Barack Obama was FRONT AND CENTRE next to Merkel.

    Trump has embraced a set of “America First” policies that put the values of international cooperation firmly to the backburner.

    Most notably, he pulled the United States out of the Paris climate accord, making the U.S.A. only the third country not signed up to the historic agreement to tackle climate change.

    In his speech announcing the decision, Trump encapsulated his approach by plainly stating that he represents the people of “Pittsburgh, not Paris.”

    Predictably, the decision was met by widespread condemnation around the world, notably by Macron and Merkel. Following Trump’s first visit to Europe, during which he failed to pledge the United States’ commitment to NATO’s Article 5, the principle of common defense, Merkel said that the era of Europe being able to fully rely on the U.S.A. was over under Trump’s leadership.

    In another publication, against footage of Trump being shunted to the margins of the G20 Summit big group photo, Australian reporter, Chris Uhlmann paints an excruciatingly vivid word portrait.

    “Trump was an uneasy, lonely, awkward figure at this gathering and you got the strong sense that some of the leaders are trying to find the best way to work around him.”

    Uhlmann added, “We learned that Donald Trump has pressed fast-forward on the decline of the United States of America as a global leader. He managed to isolate his nation, to confuse and alienate his allies and to diminish the status of the USA.”

  • Clyde Duncan  On 07/11/2017 at 3:12 pm

    After Ivanka’s G20 Summit backlash, Trump tried to go after Chelsea Clinton …. and boy was she not having it. Talk about a gentle but painful smuckdown!

    Ouch Mister President … Ouch!!!!!

    [sounds like Licks, to me – where we from they call it “brushin’ flies!”]

    Trumps obsession with Obama and the Clintons is really creepy. Reeks of insecurity. That Chelsea was the first thing on his mind after landing back home is even creepier!

    – @realDonaldTrump – 4:47 AM – 10 Jul 2017
    If Chelsea Clinton were asked to hold the seat for her mother, as her mother gave our country away, the Fake News would say CHELSEA FOR PRES!

    – @ChelseaClinton – 5:25 AM – 10 Jul 2017
    Good morning Mr. President. It would never have occurred to my mother or my father to ask me. Were you giving our country away? Hoping not.

    Aue! Aue! Mister President … Aue!!!!!!

    by Doroma | Daily Kos

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