US President Barack Obama wanted to win at the G-20 summit in St. Petersburg allies for a military strike against Syria. The mission has failed: Not only the Russian host Putin proved to be stubborn – and other nations remain skeptical.
Shortly after 17 clock drove the black Cadillac from the United States before before Constantine Palace. Hosts Vladimir Putin was waiting to receive Barack Obama. The handshake between the two presidents took only a few seconds, but for the cameras put Obama on a wide grin. Putin also smiled – purely professional, of course.
The friendliness was just played. Obama going into the “lion’s den”, the American news agency AP had announced the visit of Putin’s hometown of St. Petersburg. The U.S. President returned with a clear mission for the G-20 summit: he wanted to gain international supporters for a military strike against Syria. House Mr Putin wanted to prevent exactly this.
The blockade was thus marked out as the leaders of the 20 major industrial and emerging countries later sat down to dinner in the Peterhof Palace. Immediately before the start of the summit Putin had announced that they would talk while eating but now Syria – contrary to the Protocol, which provided for an exchange of views on “sustainable development for all.
” Russian President seemed pretty sure he would not be driven into a corner on this evening. The majority of those present shared his doubts about a military strike.
Obama: It’s about the credibility of the world community
The dinner began with more than an hour late and lasted about four hours until well after midnight. At the end there were fireworks and a concert (“La Traviata”), but Harmony did not adjust so well. The talks had confirmed the division of the summit participants, tweeted the Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta.
Obama once again recruited for a limited attack on Syria to the recent use of poison gas of 21 August 1400 to punish with death. The massive violation of the UN Convention on Chemical Weapons must not go unpunished, the U.S. president argued for days. A unique punitive action is appropriate and necessary. At issue is the credibility of the world community.
Russian President Vladimir Putin was unimpressed. The Kremlin Mr. doubts remain officially because his ally Bashar al-Assad have ever used poison gas. This is not “logical”, the Russian line, after the Syrian government had no military reason. The evidence provided by the U.S., Germany and France wipes the Kremlin aside: You are not conclusive. As well might the Syrian rebels behind it. There is therefore no basis for a retaliatory strike.
Thus, St. Petersburg, originally built by Peter the Great as a symbol of Russia’s opening to the West, this evening the scene of a new power struggle between Moscow and Washington.
G20 majority against military strike
In the tug of war the Kremlin chief was already first successes before the start of the summit: The Pope interfered, demanded by the Summit participants by letter a political solution. Then, China was still speaking out against a military strike. An attack on Syria would drive the oil price up and threaten the world economy, said Deputy Foreign Minister Zhu Guangyao. While this came as no surprise, after all, along with Russia, China had prevented several Syria in the UN Security Council resolutions already. But Putin’s plan to make it appear isolated Obama seemed to be working.
During the dinner, it became clear that although all condemn the use of poison gas, but no country wants to be so active. Nor did the audience but the U.S. to prevent a solo career. The military strike, as it seemed participants, now depends only on the approval of the U.S. Congress.
Putin and Obama preserve their politeness – even if you do not particularly think much of the Kremlin from the U.S. president. Here sit the followers of classical geopolitics: meddling in the affairs of other states and foreign military intervention in the name of humanity reject it. A U.S. attack on Syria could lead to a “total destabilization of the region,” said Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov abroad transmitter of the Kremlin, Russia Today. An intervention without UN mandate would be “the next nail in the coffin of international law”.
That the U.S. president after the summit nor government opponents and gay and lesbian encounters, is perceived as a provocation in the Moscow power elite. “To resolve the Syrian conflict unpleasant for him, Obama would have to contact with the request for cooperation with Russia,” said the pro-government newspaper “Izvestia”. “Instead, he only talked nonsense about Russia in recent months and presented as a medieval despot’s rule.” Place to deal seriously with Syria, he would rather meet with gays.
Obama’s allies: France, Saudi Arabia, Turkey
Conversely must be able to accuse the Kremlin that he has any common solution in the UN Security torpedoed yet. Also originally been planned for summer-Syria peace conference is ultimately failed because Russia does not want to move away from Assad. Putin’s persistent refusal to accept the evidence of the western secret services for a poison gas attack by the Syrian regime in Washington is considered to be cynical denial of reality. The reference to the rebels as criminals is completely “implausible,” Obama adviser rant.
In the marvelous castle hall, the debate of state leaders therefore turned in circles. The opponents of a military strike without UN mandate were – from Argentina to South Africa – clearly in the majority. The Europeans were split. Although there is agreement in the requirement that the use of chemical weapons must not remain without consequences. But want to participate neither Germany nor Britain on an insert. Chancellor Angela Merkel and Prime Minister David Cameron did in Petersburg both for a diplomatic solution greatly. Only France is fully in Obama’s side – along with Australia, Saudi Arabia and Turkey.
The Russian news channel Rossija24 closed his great reportage from the first day of the summit pathetic: “Tomorrow evening will be clear whether the leading powers of the world are willing to abide by international law – or if they do go their separate ways after a lot of talk.”
For Obama, the summit is likely to end up the same knowledge available, which he had already expressed before departure to Europe on the relationship with Russia: “We have gone some way in front of a wall.”
However, the President already plaguing other worries: Not even he can be sure of his home. While the Foreign Affairs Committee of the U.S. Senate on Wednesday gave the green light for a military strike. Also, the faction leaders of Republicans and Democrats advertise for use. But even the President of the Senate, neither the majority nor the deputies in the House of Representatives behind. When voting in the coming week is about his credibility.