Miracles and Irrelevance – the Future of the G8

Two weeks after the G8 leaders met in Germany an impression remains that they wrought a political miracle in Heiligendamm. Three things were supposedly saved at the G8 summit: world climate, Africa, and relations between Russia and the United States.

It seemed that a world government had met on the shores of the Baltic Sea. In the face of European unity, George W. Bush was transformed from a notorious sinner against the world’s climate to a born again climate protector. Some bold observers, indeed, regard this change of heart by Bush as a clear indication that Europe had assumed a new role in world politics. But no real miracles occurred; instead, the G8 will need a miracle not to lose its relevance.

In faraway America, however, where people are normally more religious than in old Europe, belief in the Heiligendamm miracle is less widespread. Indeed, Americans were rather indifferent to the summit. The reason for this is not only the public arrest of the tabloid newspapers’ current favorite, the heiress Paris Hilton, but also the fact that the only expectations Americans now have of President Bush is for him to finish his term. Because of Bush’s perceived impotence, Americans believed that no real decisions could be taken at this summit.

We hope you're enjoying Project Syndicate.

To continue reading, subscribe now.

Subscribe

Get unlimited access to PS premium content, including in-depth commentaries, book reviews, exclusive interviews, On Point, the Big Picture, the PS Archive, and our annual year-ahead magazine.

http://prosyn.org/DpQFFX2;

Cookies and Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. To find out more, read our updated cookie policy and privacy policy.