The bull in the china shop

Here’s what the Guardian has to say about the upcoming UN summit: World summit on UN’s future heads for chaos.

The British government is mounting a huge diplomatic effort this weekend to prevent the biggest-ever summit of world leaders, designed to tackle poverty and overhaul the United Nations, ending in chaos. . . .

Ricardo Alarcon, speaker of the Cuban parliament, whose hopes of attending the summit along with President Fidel Castro were dashed when he was denied a visa by the US, said in Havana the summit “has been totally devalued, its original purpose kidnapped”. . . .

Mr Bolton has so far made only one significant concession, dropping his demand for the term “millennium development goals” to be deleted.

But Mr Bolton said the US will not renew a promise to pay 0.7% of gross domestic product towards aid, regarded as necessary for meeting the millennium development goals.

Controls on arms is likely to be dropped. But agreement is almost certain on creation of the human rights council. A deal could be reached on the peace-building commission, in spite of disagreements over who should run it.

There is a divide over the definition of terrorism, with pro-Palestinian states objecting that the proposed terminology be amended to exclude Palestinian fighters.

The most significant reform, expansion of the 15-member security council to about 25 members, has been shelved until at least December.

What really got me was the part about the US denying a visa to the speaker of the Cuban parliament. This summer at least two Cuban Friends were denied visas to attend Quaker gatherings. What a foolish and shortsighted situation.