At this year’s BRICS summit, Russian President, Vladimir Putin’s security detail was challenged while trying to enter a building.
Armed guards from Vladimir Putin’s entourage were involved in an ugly fight in South Africa after they were ordered to put top secret suitcases – believed to contain the codes for Russia’s nuclear arsenal – through a security scanner.
Angry ‘pushing and shoving’ broke out after some members of Putin’s security detail were prevented from following the Russian president into the conference hall staging the summit, which was hosted by South Africa’s president Jacob Zuma and also involved Brazil, Russia, India and China.
What’s interesting is the apparent lack of diplomacy that happened next, when a Russian spokesman threw the host of the summit (South Africa) under the bus.
Kremlin officials blamed the embarrassing bust-up on the South Africans, with Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov saying: ‘They manage football better. A lot of confusion.’
He added: ‘The incident happened because of the fault of the inviting side.’
Also interesting? The spokesman said South Africans “manage football better” in response to the incident over the suitcase presumed to have nuclear codes. This is interesting, because the American counterpart to that suitcase just so happens to be referred to as a “football” by members of our President’s security. (of course, in this case, “football” refers to “soccer”, but an interesting tidbit, still)
SO WHAT IS THIS BRICS SUMMIT ABOUT, ANYWAY?
Simply put, it’s a group of five (it used to be four) nations that happen to have large populations and a lot of economic potential, but they lack the same kind of pull that the United States and Europe have enjoyed over the years. It has been their hope that maybe they can band together and use their synergies to help achieve prominence and leverage on the world stage that they haven’t been able to obtain individually. As this piece on Bloomberg details, their results, so far have been mixed at best.
WHO ARE THESE BRICS NATIONS?
An investment analyst at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. famously came up with the BRIC designation (South Africa was an afterthought) in 2001
Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa.
While the Bloomberg piece suggests that the BRICS summit can sometimes (or often) come across as a fruitless endeavor, it should be noted that these countries are becoming more and more coveted by various corporations around the world due to their large populations and practically untapped markets.
India, for example, has been seen by many as the next place for a great smartphone boom, as more of it’s 1.2 billion citizens become upwardly mobile.