Whereas other papers around the world, including the New York Times, headlined the 'U.S. Walkout' at the Montreal Conference, not so the Washington Post. In fact you have to read from the front page to the inside continuance of the story before you are even told in the Washington Post story about the 'U.S. Walkout'. This from the Wash Post story:
The United States, which generates a quarter of the world's greenhouse gases, had questioned the need to engage in even nonbinding talks on the subject. When the Europeans and Canadians proposed such talks Thursday, chief American climate negotiator Harlan Watson rejected it on the grounds that it would be tantamount to formal negotiations.
"If it walks like a duck and talks like duck, it's a duck," Watson told the other delegates, according to several participants in the closed midnight session.
As Watson walked out, one of the other delegates, baffled, responded: "I don't understand your reference to a duck. What about this document is like a duck?"
At times this week, Washington and its traditional allies seemed on the brink of divorce, especially after Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin told reporters Wednesday, "To the recalcitrant nations, including the United States, I would say this: There is such a thing as a global conscience, and now is the time to listen to it."
State Department spokesman Adam Ereli responded Friday: "If you want to talk about global consciousness, I'd say there's one country that is focused on action, that is focused on dialogue, that is focused on cooperation and is focused on helping the developing world. And that's the United States."
At one point Bush's deputies threatened to boycott the meetings if Clinton, who was invited by Montreal's mayor and the Canadian Sierra Club, spoke. Clinton offered not to come, said sources close to the former president, but the Canadians stood by the invitation.