When we met in Copenhagen in 2009 and, literally, President Obama and I were hunting for the Chinese, going throughout this huge convention center, because we knew we had to get them to agree to something. Because there will be no effective efforts against climate change unless China and India join with the rest of the world.
Hillary Clinton at the Democratic debate 10/13/15
When one considers that the essence of U.S. diplomacy in Asia involves pushing China and India into opposition, forcing these two rivals into an alliance is a remarkable if dubious achievement.
India, for its part, was frank about its identity of interests with China, at least on the issue of climate change India has come out quite well in Copenhagen: Ramesh (Lead):
[Environment Minister] Ramesh said: “A notable feature of this conference is the manner in which the BASIC group of countries (Brazil, South Africa, India and China) coordinated their position.
“BASIC ministers met virtually on an hourly basis right through the conference; India and China worked very very closely together.”
…“India, South Africa, Brazil, China and other developing countries were entirely successful in ensuring there was no violation of the BAP [Bali Action Plan] (of 2007),” Ramesh said.
“Despite relentless attempts made by developed countries, the conference succeeded in continuing negotiations under the Kyoto Protocol for the post-2012 period”, when the current period of the protocol runs out.
But over the next two years it became clear to environmentalists that what had really happened at Copenhagen was not a "r*atfucking" by the PRC, as Kevin Rudd put it, but the first stage of a persistent US campaign to gut the Kyoto Treaty.
The sheen was already off the U.S. climate change policy a scant 10 months later, when increasingly concerned and unhappy enviros assembled in Tianjin. I blogged it at the time.
Things got uglier and uglier at Cancun and Doha. Readers who want to delve deeper into the post-Copenhagen misery & the Kyoto-killing antics of Clinton's bespoke climate goon Todd Stern can go here.
Now it looks like awareness is seeping into the mainstream.
But I have a feeling that the takeaway from the debate will not be "Hillary Clinton delivered a load of hypocritical BS about climate change" but "Hillary hunts Chinese!"
And I expect she'll be quite satisfied.