The World Food Summit has just ended in Rome, at which the head of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, lauded the declaration as "an important step towards the achievement of our common objective--a world free from hunger."
Sadly, the declaration itself is written in UN prose, a bloodless language created in committee and intended to be as bland as possible. Even the snappy summary, found in the press release, reads like it has been translated from English to Esperanto and back again by someone armed only with a dictionary of international management consultancy:
Renewed commitment to end hunger... Countries also agreed to work to reverse the decline in domestic and international funding for agriculture and promote new investment in the sector, to improve governance of global food issues in partnership with relevant stakeholders from the public and private sector, and to proactively face the challenges of climate change to food security... UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon called the current food crisis "a wake-up call for tomorrow."
Luckily, I speak fluent UN and, for your edification, here's a handy guide to what it all means:
"Renewed commitment" is a fairly straightforward way of saying "we're sticking to the promises we've made before, and we feel terrible that so many people are going hungry." The purpose of the summit was to create the political will to end hunger. Specifically, the goal was to change old policies and commit to spending the $44 billion a year required to end hunger by 2025. (To put this into some context, rich countries spend $1.3 trillion every year on weapons.) No such commitments were forthcoming. Instead, it's business as usual, and the same old promises for change. As Francisco Sarmento from ActionAid puts it, "unfortunately, the poor cannot eat promises."