Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Is there a relationship between #nuclearban and #G20?

THIS WEEK: #nuclearban talks resume at @UN!

I noticed that two events are happening in rapid succession:

Negotiations on a global nuclear weapons ban treaty take place at the UN in New York City June 15 through July 7.

The G20 meets July 7 through 9 in Hamburg.

The United States opposes the former, and has convinced most of its allies to oppose it, too.

The United States views the latter as "home turf" -- it consists of the countries it sees itself leading into a new century of global economic interdependence and prosperity.

What will it look like when US President Donald Trump stands before his colleagues in Hamburg, after opposing the nuclear disarmament efforts of 100+ countries at the UN in New York?

When I first thought about this question, I had the recent NATO events in mind. So my first thought was, "Oh, well, the G20 is a lot like NATO -- those are all the same allies the US has roped in to opposing the #nuclearban . . . ."

But when I looked more closely, I realized that the G20 is not just another rooting section for the USA and its wishes. In fact, with specific reference to #nuclearban, it's a very mixed bag:

* G20 members Mexico, South Africa, and Indonesia were co-sponsors of the original motion to hold nuclear ban negotiations. And since the EU is a G20 member, we need to count co-sponsors Austria, Ireland, Malta, and Sweden. (In addition, Philippines and Vietnam, who will be in Hamburg as guest attendees, were also co-sponsors.)

* Argentina, Brazil, Saudi Arabia, and EU-member Cyprus voted in favor of the nuclear ban negotiations. (In addition, so did Hamburg guests Guinea, Senegal, and Singapore.)

Sure, there will big opponents of #nuclearban at Hamburg (USA, Russia, UK, Australia), as well as some nominal opponents (Germany, France, Italy, Canada, Turkey).

But what about China, India, Japan, and South Korea? Where exactly they stand (or will stand) on #nuclearban is an open question.

G20 economies (see theconversation.com)

Now, it may seem that #G20 has nothing to do with #nuclearban. The #G20 is about trade and development, and #nuclearban is about weapons, right? And isn't most of the #G20 economic activity is accounted for by the opponents of the #nuclearban?

Perhaps. But what if we flip that on its head and ask: "What would the chart of the economic activity of the big 20 economies look like in a world without nuclear weapons?" After all, the #G20 is all about shaping the world economy of tomorrow, not perpetuating the past.

#G20 and #nuclearban may end up having quite a bit to do with each other.

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