Conclusion after Wednesday: We have to stop meetings like this!

Article published on Oct. 28, 2011
Article published on Oct. 28, 2011
By Aoife O'Grady As EU leaders gathered once more in Brussels for a night of revelry and Greek plate smashing, they, like the rest of us, probably felt a distinct sense of deja vu. Barely had they waved goodbye to each other on Sunday than they were air kissing hello again on Wednesday. And not for the first time.
In fact, these late-night Belgian soirées are something of pattern for our distinguished leaders who have met at a whopping 17 summits since the start of 2010.

All that quality time together smiling through gritted teeth has surely brought our leaders closer than ever before. Rather than awkward acquantances who shuffle in and out for an obligatory 'state of play' meeting every two months, this motley creware becoming like a familiar gang of class mates (all, unfortunately,failing economics). There is the prim and proper one (Merkel), the rogue (Sarko), the one with “problems at home” (Papandreou) and the letch (guess who).

Such is their familiarity now that thebig boys (and girl) probably don't even have to nudge an aide to feed them the names of lesser presidents. Neither do they all have to wear phonetic name stickers, and the energetic ice-breaker games are surely no longer necessary. Wouldn't even surprise me if the get-to-know-you speed-dating sessions have been completely dispensed with. Instead, there's just some i-phone photo sharing and a quick giggle together at the latest youtube video gem before getting straight down to business.

With the Euro teetering and few electorates around Europe enamoured with their leaders, can we blame it's no wonder that our Heads of State for enjoying some alone time together? And, with a third summit of this week already be ingrumoured, they might be wise to set up camp in the Council for an extended school tour.