I don’t know how it was reported in the commercial media, but as seen through DemocracyNow! it looked as if America’s loss of stature is coming home to roost in the climate negotiations. Andrea Mitchell at NBC (on Rachel) said that it appears that Obama was not invited to a meeting between China and other nations and blundered his way in.
obama clearly ticked “wen” china’s premier sent jr aide to crucial meeting. was obama dissed by china? He never got 2nd one on one w/ wen
obama aides on af1 say he didnt barge in on leaders frm china,brazil,india s africa – thot he was seeing china alone, stumbled into caucus
Here’s the NYT reporting on it from John Broder:
The deal eventually came together after a dramatic moment in which Mr. Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton burst into a meeting of the Chinese, Indian and Brazilian leaders, according to senior administration officials. Mr. Obama said he did not want them negotiating in secret.
The intrusion led to new talks that cemented central terms of the deal, American officials said.
Sergio Serra, Brazil’s senior climate negotiator here, confirmed that Mr. Obama had joined a meeting of Brazilian, Indian, Chinese and other officials, although he did not say that Mr. Obama walked in uninvited.
The rest of the world was basically p–sed at Obama’s high-handed speech and his very brief stay at Copenhagen. This is an excerpt from Obama. Notice his failure to mention that the major holdout has been the US, including its Senator Ridiculous (R-Imhofe)
I just want to say to this plenary session that we are running short on time. And at this point, the question is whether we will move forward together or split apart, whether we prefer posturing to action. I’m sure that many consider this an imperfect framework that I just described. No country will get everything that it wants. There are those developing countries that want aid with no strings attached and no obligations with respect to transparency. They think that the most advanced nations should pay a higher price—I understand that. There are those advanced nations who think that developing countries either cannot absorb this assistance, or that will not be held accountable effectively, and that the world’s fastest-growing emitters should bear a greater share of the burden.
We know the fault lines, because we’ve been imprisoned by them for years. These international discussions have essentially taken place now for almost two decades, and we have very little to show for it other than an increased acceleration of the climate change phenomenon. The time for talk is over.
In other words, “Take it or leave it, suckers.”
AMY GOODMAN: Lumumba Di-Aping, you have called two degree increase a suicide pact, yet we see these leaked UNFCCC documents that indicate current negotiations would lead to three degree increase. What do you mean by “suicide pact”? And what’s your reaction to these latest documents? Did you know about them?
LUMUMBA STANISLAUS DI-APING: … I read from the IPCC report. “In all four regions of Africa, and in all seasons, the median temperature [increase] lies between 3 degrees C and 4 degrees C, roughly 1.5 times the global mean response.” One hundred and fifty times, so a two degrees is not three; it’s actually 3.5 and above.
So, for me, it means simply I will accept the total destruction of my continent, her people, in Copenhagen. That, I would not do. That should not be asked of Africa, because it is effectively saying Africa is not the part of the human family.
AMY GOODMAN: Secretary of State Hillary Clinton just arrived here in Copenhagen, dealing with the questions of will these talks collapse and making her announcement about what the US is putting on the table. Naomi Klein, your response?
NAOMI KLEIN: Well, it was an extraordinary press conference, because it was really like just the most naked form of blackmail. She put this figure on the table. She said the US will contribute to a $100 billion fund, but only if the terms of their deal are agreed to by all of the countries here. So it was “agree to our terms.” And those terms are very clear. They’re kill the Kyoto Protocol, instead of legally binding emissions, transparency, which I don’t even know what that means, and no overall target, but these national plans. And as Jade has just outlined, those national plans do not meet the crisis. So it’s a horrible choice that the United States has put before the world: accept a completely unacceptable agreement that will not solve the climate crisis, or receive no money to deal with the effects of that crisis, which you are already living—the droughts, the floods, the malaria.
PRESIDENT EVO MORALES: [translated] … The budget of the United States is $687 billion for defense. And for climate change, to save life, to save humanity, they only put up $10 billion. This is shameful. The budget for the Iraq war, according to the figures we have, is $2.6 trillion for the Iraq war, to go kill in Iraq. Trillions of dollars. But directed towards paying the climate debt, $10 billion. This is completely unfair.
SUNITA NARAIN: Well, I think if President Bush was in kindergarten, President Obama is in first grade, but nothing more than that.