By George Friedman
Last week’s G-7 summit was a mostly drama-free affair. The confrontation between U.S. President Donald Trump and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau came only after the summit ended. Members of the G-7, including the United States, issued a joint communique in which they agreed on the need for free and fair trade. The U.S. withdrew its support, and a war of words between the heads of state of two staunch allies ensued. Putting their spat in perspective requires an understanding of what the G-7 actually is.
What we now call the G-7 was meant to be an organization of the leading industrial countries in the world. It originated in the 1970s in response to the Arab oil embargo, which had hit the industrial world hard. It hit back by forming an entity that represented the major industrial powers that were struggling with high energy prices.
What the group was supposed to do remains unclear. What’s clear is that it accomplished very little. It didn’t