Democracy – a Covid Collateral?

Opinion Piece by Irina von Wiese

EU

 

Now, rather than after the end of the Covid-19 crisis, is the time for pro-democratic parties to act. Paralysed by the scale of the current threat, we are tempted to stick our heads in the sand and focus on survival. This is exactly what others are hoping for. They are seizing the moment, building on today’s fear to instil tomorrow’s obedience. If we don’t take care, much of the damage done to basic rights, democracy and the rule of law will be irreversible. 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

Belgium Pulls itself Together

How the liberal head of government Sophie Wilmès is becoming a competent crisis manager

 

The rapid spread of the corona virus hit Belgium at the worst possible time. At the beginning of March, Germany’s neighbouring country already lacked an effective government for more than a year and was well on the way to a serious national crisis. But then the Belgians recalled their greatest virtue, compromise, and got to know their Prime Minister afresh. Continue reading