Brexit: The Ship has Sailed 

Failure of the negotiations becoming more likely

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The ship has sailed. This sentence probably best describes the general interest in Brexit and the state of the British opposition. Yet the important decisions are being made only now.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson won the landmark House of Commons elections last December and led his country out of the European Union on 31st January. Since then, the Brexit is no longer a spectre of political debate, but a fact.

The general interest in the UK’s withdrawal from the EU has waned noticeably on both sides of the English Channel. This is all the more true since the coronavirus pandemic has swept across Europe and its catastrophic consequences have overshadowed other events. Continue reading

Europe Today – Remaining Confident, Becoming More Sovereign 

New EU states

 

Europe in May 1945: a destroyed continent, over 50 million war victims, tens of millions of refugees, uprooted and injured. Hunger, devastated lands and torn societies. Continuing civil wars and partisan fights in Italy, the Balkans, Greece and Eastern Europe. A political geography of failed states with dysfunctional judicial and financial systems, mistrust and a desire for revenge between neighbouring states.

Europe in May 2020: A continent in corona lockdown, Brexit on the doorstep, a difficult transatlantic partner, China as a rival gaining influence, deep mistrust of neighbour Russia, which is waging a hot war in Europe. Climate change and migration as megatopics challenging Europe’s material and political resources.

Is Europe finished? No, because Europe today is also the following: one of the three largest economic areas in the world, winner of the Cold War in the 20th century, a community of continuously developing and expanding work of peace and prosperity by former enemies of war. Europe, that is the reality of a deeply integrated area of economy and law, of learning and research, of free encounters and free speech. A place of longing for millions who want to escape misery and make the dream of a better life come true.

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Ice Age between the Czech Republic and Russia 

Protest against Putin’s trivializing interpretation of history

 

 

The Corona crisis was used quickly and efficiently – now that there was no need for protests, he was disposed of: General Konev, Marshal of the Soviet Union. Not himself, of course, but his monument in the Prague district Bubeneč. Since then there has been great disagreement between the Czech Republic and Putin’s Russia. But the dismantling of the monument is only one of a long series of targeted provocations directed at the Kremlin, with which people in the Czech Republic are protesting against Vladimir Putin’s neo-Stalinist history policy and for an appropriate remembrance of the victims of communism. Continue reading

From Poland With Love – April 

 

PART I: COVID-19 IN POLAND

 

(Some) Restrictions Lifted

After Easter, the Polish government announced its plans on how some of the restrictions introduced in response to the Covid-19 epidemic would be lifted. In the first period, parks and forest were open for the public. Bigger changes were planned for May 4th.

As part of the second stage of exiting the lockdown, Poland opened a number of facilities on the first day after the long weekend (May 1st and May 3rd are bank holidays in Poland). The list of facilities that were opened includes: Continue reading

Corona and the Struggle for Sovereignty of Interpretation 

The pandemic will determine the rules of international politics in the future

 

In a statement of 24 March 2020 Josep Borell, the European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, formulated a fundamental insight. According to him, we are currently experiencing a global struggle to interpret what is actually happening in the context of the pandemic. In this struggle we must not overlook the geopolitical dimension. According to Borell, the central question here is who will play the role of “saviour”. Ultimately, then, it is a question of nothing less than the readjustment of political influence on the world stage. It should not be forgotten that this debate is also being conducted with those who want to dismantle the European Union. Continue reading

Europe’s Corona Governance 

During the Corona crisis, the EU member states mainly take individual measures, while the EU does not currently seem to play a major role in their coordination.

 

“Schengen dead – borders closed in Europe”, “Monster traffic jam at the Polish border”, “Ministries all over Europe on a mask hunt”, “The South is dying, the North is hoarding”. Such or similar headlines and stories can be found in current times of the Corona crisis across classic and social media. The verdict: Member states do what they want and the EU, “Brussels”, does nothing; once again failing across the board. But, what is true about EU bashing on corona accounts? Continue reading