G8 Summit: Is the world a better place yet?

The G8 (+5) met in Heiligendamm, Germany last week. The world's richest countries came to agreements on climate change and poverty in Africa that are unlikely to satisfy most critics of global capitalism.

Global Voices has linked to comments from India, Russia, and Africa in the past week. And people from as far away as Peru and Japan have participated in protests against the meeting.

Jewels in the Jungle in Germany has kept track of some of the best articles and blogging on the G8 around the web (especially from Africa), and says:

I’m not as disappointed and pessimistic about the outcome of these talks as some people seem to be but at the same time you have to wonder, are the G8 Summits relevant anymore? Were they ever useful in helping to solve the world’s problems?

It has all become such a circus for the politicians and every group under the sun to voice their outrage and anger about all kinds of causes that have little or nothing to do with the summit agendas that one has to ask, why bother?

Francisco Xerinda on the excellent AfricaVox2007 blog of nine African journalists is more positive:

The last four days here in Germany have been dominated by the anti-globalisation protests. The roads are constantly blocked and the police keep telling us to take a different route.

But for me the practical irritation is worth it; such protests really do matter to me. I saw the impact they had two years ago when pressure from civil society at Gleneagles led to debt relief for my country, Mozambique.

Patricia Daniels, on openDemocracy's openSummit blog reported on the G8 Summit and Alternative Summit from the perspective of women's rights. She advises readers not to bother reading the G8-Summit declarations. “They mainly contain bland statements which commit the G8 to nothing,” she says.

Predictably, millions of YouTube viewers were more interested in whether newly-elected French president Nicolas Sarkozy was drunk at his G8 summit press conference…


  • […] was? Ah, genau. Also, bitte nicht toppen! Danke. Hoffentlich kommt Putin nicht. Nicht, dass Sarko wieder besoffen dort auftritt (G8 lässt […]

  • Raye Howard

    Less talk more action. I’m so tired of people who have spent their lives hoarding personal wealth meeting, visiting, touring and speaking. All in an effort to ‘bring awareness’ so someone else will save the poor. Instead of holding yet another meeting to discuss the issues simply set an example. People learn by our example not our words anyway. So, instead of holding yet another meeting — donate the money that would have been spent on private jets, limos and luxurious hotels to the poor. And spend the time you would have spent talking swinging a hammer at an orphanage. Stop the talk talk talk about making a difference and MAKE A DIFFERENCE.

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