The recent G7 economic summit included exchanges between Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro and French President Emmanuel Macron that was nearly as heated as the Amazon wildfires.

During the summit, the G7 nations had agreed to send aid to fight the fires in the Amazon. Brazil rejected that offer, with a concise reminder about the Notre Dame blaze and European deforestation.

At a summit in France on Monday, the Group of Seven nations pledged $20 million to help fight the flames in the Amazon and protect the rainforest, in addition to a separate $12 million from Britain and $11 million from Canada.

Onyx Lorenzoni, the Brazilian president’s chief of staff, sharpened the criticism, saying Europe should use the funds for its own reforestation. Then he referred to Notre Dame, the medieval monument in Paris that was ravaged by fire in April, shocking the world.

“Macron could not avoid an obvious fire in a church that is a world heritage site,” Lorenzoni said, according to Brazil’s G1 news website.

The South American officials make a profound point. Deforestation in Brazil declined by 70% from 2004 to 2012 and is currently 62% forested. On the other hand, Europe has been substantially deforested through its history, losing over 50% in 6000 years of history.

Bolsonaro is now mulling over whether to accept the money.

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro says he will think about accepting offers of international aid to fight raging fires in the Amazon region if French President Emmanuel Macron apologizes for comments he deemed offensive.

Bolsonaro said Tuesday that Macron called him a liar, and accused the French president of questioning Brazil’s sovereignty amid tensions over fires in the region — which Macron described as an issue “for the whole planet.”

The diplomatic tensions escalated, thanks to a social media exchange involving Macron’s wife.

French President Emmanuel Macron has described his Brazilian counterpart Jair Bolsonaro as “extremely disrespectful” after the South American leader appeared to mock his wife, Brigitte Macron, in a Facebook post.

In a post on Bolsonaro’s Facebook page, a user posted a meme comparing the appearance of the Brazilian president’s wife with that of the French first lady, and implying that Macron was jealous. “Don’t humiliate the guy … haha,” read the reply from Bolsonaro’s account.

https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/status/1165417573955067906

The good news in this exchange: The press did not accuse President Trump of being the worst bully during the summit.

However, that is not to say Trump received high praise for his trade deals or diplomacy.  For example, there was pearl-clutching over a missed climate change session.

On Monday, before the close of the G7 meetings in France, the heads of those nations gathered to talk about climate change and what could be done to address the warming of our planet. Donald Trump didn’t go.

“The President had scheduled meetings and bilaterals with Germany and India, so a senior member of the Administration attended in his stead,” press secretary Stephanie Grisham said by way of explanation for Trump’s absence.

Additionally, Macron said the U.S. did not join charter against online hate speech.

“We formalized an agreement for the first time with several Anglo-Saxon and European platforms and with support from nearly all (G7) countries,” Macron told reporters after the summit, which was held in southwestern France.

“We had a very good discussion with the United States, which for legal reasons was not able to formalize the agreement on this point,” Macron said, adding he was hopeful it could be done in the coming weeks.

In a nutshell, it appears that the G7 summit shows that conservative leaders are fighting back with snark and robust public policies. Of course, the American press will portray the event as anything but a success.

Hopefully, the summit organizers will take Trump up on his offer to hold the next G7 at a Trump resort. The press head explosions would be epic.

 
 
donate
Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.