SOTT Exclusive: G7 games politicians play


© AP Photo/Grigory Dukor, Pool
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

The upcoming G7 summit in Germany is revealing some of the games politicians are playing.

Last year Russia was excluded from the G7 summit for the first time in 17 years. It was to be held in Sochi but was canceled following the Crimea referendum to join Russia. The Western nations deemed it as an "illegal annexation" of territory.

Canada's Stephen Harper came out shouting that Russia will not be a part of the upcoming G7 meeting in Germany as long as Putin is the leader of Russia:

From RT:

Canadian PM Stephen Harper has pledged to "strongly oppose" Russia rejoining the Group of Seven nations as long as Vladimir Putin is president. The G7 suspended Moscow last year over the conflict in Ukraine, but hasn't ruled out allowing it back.

"I don't think Russia under Vladimir Putin belongs in the G7. Period," Harper said in an exclusive interview with AP ahead of his trip to Ukraine and the G7 meeting in Bavaria this week. "Canada would very, very strongly oppose Putin ever sitting around that table again. It would require consensus to bring Russia back and that consensus will just not happen."

According to Harper, who faces re-election in October, Moscow is hard to get on with.

"Russia is more often than not trying deliberately to be a strategic rival, to deliberately counter the good things we're trying to achieve in the world than for no other reason than to just counter them," Harper said, adding that the "mindset of the guy we are dealing with is that the Cold War has never ended and, 'I've got to fight to change the ending somehow.'"

"I don't think there is any way under this leader Russia will ever change," Harper said.


© Reuters/Grigory Dukor

It is pretty clear from Harper's statement that he is frustrated with Russia because they don't play along with the West's imperial goals. But he seems to be alone in wanting Russia to stay away:

Russia's Absence at G7 Summit is a Loss:

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that the absence of the Russian Federation at the summit of G7 is a loss.

However, she added that such a step was necessary.

"In a certain sense, [it] is a loss, but it was necessary," the politician stated.

Merkel stressed that the fighting in eastern Ukraine and Russia's actions in Crimea violated the "peaceful order in Europe that formed after the Second World War."

"Some things require a lot of time, but in this case we need a change in Russia's position, which I currently don't see," Merkel said in an interview with radio station RTL.

So Merkel is on board, but not all German politicians agree:

German Politicians Want Putin at G7 Summit:

Global economy, security, environmental protection and other key issues cannot be effectively addressed without Russia, China and India, ex-leader of the German Left, Oskar Lafontaine, said Wednesday.

"The [G7] lineup is questionable. I believe we must invite Putin," Lafontaine said during Wednesday's Anne Will talk show aired by ARD television.

His opinion was fully echoed by ex-Education Minister Klaus von Dohnanyi from the Social Democratic Party and by former Bavarian Prime Minister

Edmund Stoiber from the Christian-Social Union Party said Russia's expulsion from G8 was a mistake because key global issues cannot be discussed without Russia.

"There is no way you can possibly resolve the Syrian crisis without Russia's participation. Neither can you the Iranian problem," Stoiber underscored.

Klaus von Dohnanyi said he thought this idea should be put across to the other members of the "western camp" located "west of Germany".

"We need to tell them loud and clear that problems are not resolved by shutting off someone simply because his opinion is not shared by the rest," he added.

Here is what the US has to say about the meeting:

President Barack Obama, who will join the leaders of Britain, Germany, France, Italy, Canada and Japan at the upcoming G7 summit in Germany, plans to urge European allies to continue with sanctions against Russia. White House officials said they are concerned by the outburst of violence in Ukraine earlier this week.

"We continue to see very concerning Russian aggression in eastern Ukraine," Obama's deputy national security adviser, Ben Rhodes, said in a conference call with journalists, AP reported. "That is why it's so important that sanctions are kept in place, so that they're not just seen as one-time punishments that are then able to be waited out by countries that continue to violate international law and international norms."


© AP Photo/ Geert Vanden Wijngaert

So is Russia worried about their exclusion from the G7?

Kremlin comments on Canadian PM's words about Putin:

The Kremlin has voiced regret over the revival of the irreconcilable cold war rhetoric with regard to Russia's leaders.

"As for such irreconcilable attitude towards our president, this is not something new," Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, commenting on the remarks by the Canadian Prime Minister that Russia wouldn't return to the G7 during Vladimir Putin's tenure. "We can only voice regret over the fact that the rhetoric of the 1970s has revived so quickly," Peskov added.

Commenting on the sanctions issue, he noted, "This is not our issue on the agenda."

G7 Summit Without Russia: Problem for the West, But Not for the Kremlin:

Moscow's absence at the G7 summit in Germany does not mean that Russia is politically isolated in the world. Moreover, it helps the Kremlin to pursue a more independent policy, wrote.

The proximity to the Western world is no longer an absolute value for modern Russia, the German newspaper wrote.

Moscow seeks to follow a sovereign foreign policy and is not willing to impose itself on Western countries, the article said, referring to the upcoming G7 summit, which will be held in Germany on Sunday without the participation of the Russian leader.

"Will the Russian President sit on Sunday in the Kremlin and grieve about the fact that the G7 leaders met in the Elmau castle without him? Unlikely. The days when the Russian President wanted to just stand next to his Western colleagues are over," the newspaper wrote.

As Lavrov notes:

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov then said that no one had actually excluded Russia from the G8.

"The G8 is an informal club, no one gives out membership cards and no one can expel members", he added.

Russia is hardly excluded from world geopolitics. European leaders, including Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico, regularly visit Russia. In a few days, Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to visit the Russian pavilion at the international exhibition "EXPO-2015" in Italy. In the Vatican, he will have a private meeting with Pope Francis.

Russia is also expanding its contacts within the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and maintains fruitful cooperation with Asian countries. With this regard, the Kremlin's non-participation in the G7 summit is just a little episode in its foreign policy activities, noted.

These games the G7 politicians are playing just go to show the absurdity of their world views and how they are increasingly becoming irrelevant.