[The Telegraph, U.K.]



Les Dernières Nouvelles d’Alsace, France

The Men and the Mermaid


"The 120 heads of state and government decided to find yet again in favor of the 'sacred' defense of national interests. … The E.U. doesn't yet know how to stand up to the Chinese and American giants. Even united, the French, British and Germans don't carry sufficient political weight."


By Jean-Claude Kiefer



Translated By Juliet Fox


December 19, 2009


France - Les Dernières Nouvelles d’Alsace - Home Page (French)

The statue of The Little Mermaid at the port of Copenhagen - according to Hans Christian Andersen's fairy tale - promised to work for the good of humanity … But frankly, the climate talks did anything but. As we go to press, the talks have accomplished the bare minimum, i.e.: a non-binding (or very slightly binding) political declaration, postponing any decisions to other conferences. And under a banner as diplomatic as it is hypocritical: a “significant but insufficient agreement …”


Nevertheless, what expectations and what a din! And how dramatic as well. For example Nicolas Sarkozy’s speech on Thursday night [watch below]. Was it in vain? After nearly two weeks of endless palaver between experts and lobbyists, 120 heads of state and government decided, by a vast majority, to find yet again in favor of the “sacred” defense of national interests.


French President Nicolas Sarkozy exhorts his fellow world leaders to

act, at the Climate Summit in Copenhagen, Dec. 18.

[Click here or click photo to watch speeches by German Chancellor Merkel; Iran

President Ahmadinejad; Brazil President Lula; and French President Sarkozy.]
  osted by WORLDMEETS.US

Of course, they did so while begging others to take the first step in the name of the climate and promising action … But, except for Europeans, Brazilians and a number of Africans, they refuse to submit to international controls. China, the world's champion polluter, rejects any interference. It's true that in comparison with an inhabitant of the United States - and to a lesser extent, a Western European - the pollution caused by each of China's 1.3 billion citizens is minute. It is equally true that, for financial reasons, Europeans and Americans have either abandoned production of the dirtiest products or outsourced it to Asia, in order to re-import them at lower prices without having to account for the conditions under which they are made …


China’s obstinacy has led the United States to be equally reluctant, since Washington connects the “transparency” of Beijing to its own contribution to an annual pledge of $100 billion by the “rich” to less advanced countries, beginning in 2012. And without that help, it would be useless to hope for “harmonious development” in the South or for a halt in deforestation there.


Even if the American “pre-commitments” fall short of European expectations, we've seen that the real game must be played out between the two superpowers, the United States and China, and a rivalry that resembles that of the Cold War. By the end of the summit, Prime Minister Wen Jiabao hadn't conceded a thing. Nor had Barack Obama, despite his “fine” speech …


Nevertheless, the European Union was the driving force of this conference, and more specifically Nicolas Sarkozy, Gordon Brown and Angel Merkel. Apparently, the E.U. doesn't yet know how to stand up to the Chinese and American giants. Even united, the French, British and Germans don't carry sufficient political weight - a lesson learned. And Andersen’s little mermaid - that mythical representation of nature - must have said to herself that the tale is the reality: she has no luck with men.   


[Editor's Note: In the Anderson tale, the Little Mermaid falls in love with a human prince and in the end, dies without the man she has given up her life as a mermaid for.]  



El Pais, Spain: 2009 - The Year Earth Outgrew Nation States

El Watan, Algeria: The 'Madness' of Copenhagen

Le Quotidien d'Oran, Algeria: Fiasco!: West Bets Climate Change Will Hurt Poor

Der Spiegel, Germany: German Press Concludes: 'Copenhagen Was All-Out Failure'

The Telegraph, U.K.: British Leader Says China and U.S. to Blame for Summit Failure

The Telegraph, U.K.: There'll Be 'Nowhere to Run' from New World Government  

Liberation, France: Global Cooperation - Gone Like a 'Mirage'

Le Monde, France: Copenhagen Climate Talks - 'Failure and Disappointment'

Le Figaro, France: The Climate and the Challenge of Governing a Planet

Der Spiegel, Germany: Gunning Full Throttle Into the Greenhouse  

Estadao, Brazil: The Rich Show Their Hand at Copenhagen

Rossiyskaya Gazeta, Russia: Gorbachev Presses World Leaders to Deliver on Climate

Kurier, Austria : Potentially Negligent Mass Murder: Climate Change Must Be Faced

Guardian Unlimited: Climate Summit in 'Disarray' After Leak of 'Danish Text'  

Frankfurter Rundschau, Germany: 'Grotesque Behavior' of Climate Powers

Financial Times Deutschland, Germany: Beijing Instead of Copenhagen  

Hurriyet, Turkey: History's Judgment of Our Generation Depends on Climate Summit  

Rossijskaya Gazeta, Russia: Gorbachev: Dialogue Only Way to Resolve Korea Crisis


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Posted by WORLDMEETS.US, Dec. 30, 4:39pm


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