Aptly described "Out of the Ashes" given the "fire", "fire", "fire" that was called by the US officials that set off the global panic, Prime Minister Gordon Brown has written a nice piece in the Washington Post (online tonight for publication tomorrow). As someone who just last night pleaded for him to keep pleading the case for a "new financial architecture", I commend the Prime Minister on his pleas.
But, I am even more convinced that I have to redouble my lobbying because the silence remains deafening about what will happen to developing countries.
The Prime Minister writes: "The global problems we face require global solutions. At the end of World War II, American and European visionaries built a new international economic order and formed the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and a world trade body. They acted because they knew that peace and prosperity were indivisible. They knew that for prosperity to be sustained, it had to be shared." Good intentions, perhaps. Achieved? Definitely not. Long before the crisis was felt in the developed world, the developing world cried tears and blood about the imperfections of these institutions. Respectfully, visionaries from other countries need to be in this reform dialogue.
The Prime Minister writes: "Today, the same sort of visionary internationalism is needed to resolve the crises and challenges of a different age. And the greatest of global challenges demands of us the boldest of global cooperation." Agreed, but if the Prime Minister is serious about the reality of the crises and challenges, and the necessity of global cooperation, then we have to try NEW "visionary internationalism" . The "same sort" will not do.
The Prime Minister writes: "There are no Britain-only or Europe-only or America-only solutions to today's problems. We are all in this together, and we can only resolve this crisis together." Agreed. Does that "we" include the developing world? Because it MUST.
I look forward to the Prime Minister's next article, interview, statement and/or press conference. And remain hopeful that somewhere sometime very soon he will at least include some reference to how the needs and views of the developing countries of his fellow Commonwealth states that are developing countries would be included in this reform process. Because that would not only be a significant start, it would mark the difference between the beginning of the creation of "a new financial architecture" and that of a stronger, more stable, more equitable and more sustainable global financial and economic system.