World debt, the Arab Spring, and Western “leadership”.

The year of 2011 has seen the Portuguese, Greek and Irish economies collapse under the weight of unsecured debt. Italy, a member of the elite club of rich countries called the G8, may be next.

And there is genuine cause for concern that an Italian cold will create an influenza epidemic on the American financial markets.

So, imagine my surprise when I saw a headline that read: “G8 countries pledge US$38 BILLION to Arab states”.   That’s right – 38 billion dollars.

And look who will benefit:

One of the first on the list is Egypt, whose leadership has shown that it is interested in supporting Ankara as it edges closer to Iran. And this weekend, the temporary military leadership in Cairo were amazingly late in preventing the Israeli embassy from burning down, as diplomats literally fled for their lives.

And then there are the pledges for Libya, the sixth largest global producer of oil. The average Libyan may not have benefitted from the petro dollars, but surely Western banks can release money from Ghadaffi’s bulging accounts for use of his former people?

How about some of the richer states like Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi chipping in with a couple of bucks for their neighbours? Why does the West always feel so morally guilty?

In comparison, Britain, America et al are trying to introduce austerity packages whilst promoting job packages. What a pickle.

I live in Israel. Last Friday, S&P raised the country’s credit rating to A+. Despite an expected downturn in growth for 2012 of around 2.5%, the agency noted that:

The rating action reflects our view of Israel’s improved economic policy flexibility as a result of strong growth and careful macroeconomic management…Israel is on a credible path toward continued government debt burden reduction and stronger external indicators.

 In September, the next session of the UN will open in New York. Israel will again be criticised for the problems of the world.

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