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A new approach to peace and to war

Nick Robinson | 16:10 UK time, Friday, 25 September 2009

Pittsburgh: Snub? What snub?

So Gordon Brown had the ultimate answer to those who said he'd been snubbed by Obama.

Gordon Brown and Barack ObamaThis morning, he stood shoulder-to-shoulder with the American president - not to make war, as his predecessor did, but to try to prevent one in the Middle East.

I sense that this moment may come to matter just as much as the time that Tony Blair and George Bush warned that Iraq was developing weapons of mass destruction, even though the approaches of the two pairings are totally different.

This time, the American president has declared his belief in the United Nations; in working with other nations and not alone; and in negotiation not military action.

However, if tougher sanctions do not flow - or if they do and Iran remains unmoved - war could still follow - waged not by the US and the UK, but by Israel which will insist it has no choice.

A new approach to peace and to war is now under test. The outcome cannot be predicted.


  • Comment number 1.

    It's interesting that Brown hated Blair yet now spends his time chasing a Blair clone. Caledonian Comment

  • Comment number 2.

    It makes no difference. Gordon Brown will still be Gordon Brown, and doing his job just as badly whether he meets Obama or not. It really is a non issue.

  • Comment number 3.

    Still didn't get his meeting though, did he?

    Call an election

  • Comment number 4.

    "Pittsburgh: Snub? What snub?

    So Gordon Brown had the ultimate answer to those who said he'd been snubbed by Obama."

    Ha ha ha ha ha. You make me laugh Nick.

    Your labour spin machine just hit overdrive.........

  • Comment number 5.

    What arrogance !
    Here we sit with WMDs and the US has them up to their armpits,other countries have them but Iran for some reason is deemed a greater danger than North Korea.
    If some idiot proceeds to blether about how G Brown saved the world I will lose all control ," and take arms against a sea of troubles"

    We have already increased the numbers of those who hate us in the larger world by invading Iraq and Afghanistan, do we really need to add on Iran?
    What if China , Africa, India ,Iran , Korea etc etc decided that WE were the " rogue " states and had to be curbed in the same way the West has
    " curbed " Iraq?
    What then?
    Ah! But they'd be terrorists, we after all are the good guys.
    Double standards which disgust me.

  • Comment number 6.

    Obama: "Hey Gordon, how's it going. You know, I'm alright, my budget deficit will be 13.5%."

    Brown: "Well Barack, mine will be slightly larger." (this annoying poster guestimates close to 20% this year and next)

    Obama: "Don't worry, you got that central bank of your neighbouring country to buy half the conventional gilts out there, so yields are still modest and your electorate think you can finance all that debt cheaply. Fed is doing a great job too, you know - kick ass. No bubble trouble!"

    Brown: "I'm so glad I can cuddle up to you because you did the right thing with those duties on Chinese tyres. I wasn't serious when I said the world should not relapse into protectionism. We should teach those Chinese exporters and savers a lesson, despite that they buy all your treasuries to finance your debt."

    Obama: "You're not making fun of my tire plan, are you?".

    Brown: "You mean tyres, not tires, big man?"

    Obama: "Watch it, or next time I won't even meet you in the kitchen!"

    Brown: "Ok, ok. Something else: I've got this plan to put one my aides in place to push the deficit spending agenda. She will also advocate quantitative easing and low interest rates. Should help prevent the Germans get across their views that deficits should be reduced as quickly as possible."

    Obama: "Yeah, that sounds quite clever. We got to keep printing money, I mean: keep interest rates low and spend. It would help the democrats in the next elections, as it will help you next year."

    Brown: "Great, I'll get the news out back home. Should help me with my party conference next week"

    Obama: "Ok, slam dunk for us money printers. Those German and Asian savers should change their ways. We'll make them, Gordo!"

  • Comment number 7.

    Not sure why but I am not surprised by this.

    The Iran story made it necessary that they both sing from the same hymn sheet but as a duet. Look what happened when Blair followed Bush's lead.

    As big a non-story as the first one.

    I will, however, wager that if the Iranians had not been playing the fool then this meeting would not have taken place.

    Purely circumstancial.

  • Comment number 8.

    Good old President O.

    He's doing what George W and his predecessors never did.

    Instead of the usual bull-in-a-china-shop approach singing "I'll Do It My Way" (with full orchestra), Barack is choosing to use internationally agreed channels.

    Back in the 50's and 60's Britain realised it was no longer an autonomous island. Now the US are realising they can't go it alone either.

    However, the problem has only been temporarily shelved. The UN is principally a reknowned talking shop. Little action will emerge, and any that does will be so flabby, because it can only be a consensus of so many disparate views and vested interests.

    So when push comes to shove, what will be done to prevent the proliferation of nuclear arms in the Middler East ?

  • Comment number 9.

    Leave it out Nick, the damage has been done.
    "The ultimate answer?" That is paper thin and you know it. Calling five times to set up face time, (true or not, that is what people now believe to be true) is beyond undignified.

  • Comment number 10.

    It's quite pathetic, our PM throws his toys out of the pram and the President has to placate him.

    There, there Gordon it's alright. Look your here with me now aren't you?

    Aaah didums.

    The Gordon Brown issue aside, I can't help thinking that the extremists will win this one.

    It is not enough to stand and say we'll win through negotiation when your enemy has just left a fizzing bomb behind your back.

    The war on terror is not based on reason.


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