Thursday

2nd Feb 2023

Mars, god of war, returns to Europe

Political scientist David Rowe has been looking into why so much of Europe wasn't ready for Putin — and the consequences for the Western allies of not spilling their own blood in Ukraine.

Ethics after Qatargate

The dumpster fire at the European Parliament may be largely of the EU's own making.

Bad Karma

While the European Union openly criticises China for abusing its the mostly Muslim Uyghur population, the EU turns a blind eye to the way India treats its own Muslim minority — because it wants India as a strategic ally.

Latest News

  1. MEPs launch anonymous drop-box for shady lobbying secrets
  2. Hawkish ECB rate-rise 'puts energy transition at risk'
  3. MEPs push for greater powers for workers' councils
  4. How Pavel won big as new Czech president — and why it matters
  5. French official to take on Islamophobia in EU
  6. EU green industry plan could spark 'dangerous subsidy race'
  7. Wolves should be defended, EU ministers urge
  8. EU Commission wants drones for Bulgaria on Turkey border
The Decolonisers

In this episode: a look at when top EU diplomat Josep Borrell branded most of the world a jungle — and then got away with making only a grudging apology.

How Europe helped normalise Georgia Meloni

Should Georgia Meloni be considered neofascist? She insists she's a patriotic conservative. And indeed, if she's prime minister, she's expected to respect Italy's democracy — if only to keep money flowing from the EU.

Model minority myths

There are many things to love about France. But a stated policy of colour blindness is not one of them.

Bianca's story revisited

Europeans howl in outrage about US backsliding on abortion rights — but they don't exactly have their own house in order. Take the case of Bianca. She's a Romanian.

The curious case of the racial Muslim

Legal scholar Sahar Aziz says people who identify as Muslim are often perceived in racial terms, like black and brown people, in white-dominated societies. That makes Muslims on both sides of the Atlantic the subject of similar forms of racism.

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Bonjour, Vladimir

French journalist Guy Lagache spent the first six months of this year in close proximity to Emmanuel Macron, making a film that ended up focusing on the French president's Putin strategy.

Ultraconservatives in Putin's shadow

Vladimir Putin's Ukraine war has threatened to be a public relations disaster for hard-right gatherings like the Conservative Political Action Conference — now meeting in Budapest and featuring Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orbán, who remains highly-cordial with the Kremlin.

To Kyiv — and back

Would you pick up a gun and fight for Ukraine? The injustice of the Russian invasion has led white-collar professionals like Florent and Thomas to trade suits and ties for camouflage and Kalashnikovs.

Eurafrique

Could Françafrique — the French sphere of influence that outlived the end of French colonialism — still be revived on a European scale, as Eurafrique?

European shibboleths

Europe is green, humane and has defeated populism. These are common views among the EU chattering classes. But they often seem more reflexive than reflective, and some of them amount to shibboleths.

Transparency, Interrupted

The European Union adopted its access regulation at the turn of this century. But as work went digital, the rules have failed to keep pace. A lot still goes unrecorded or unregistered, and cannot be accessed easily, if at all.

Quick Take: Enrico Letta

Speaking at the Global Progressive Forum, former Italian prime minister Enrico Letta describes the victim-shaming of Italy and Spain during the financial crisis — and explains how a big bag of money from Brussels may be helping heal the wounds.

Book Club: The Scent of Wild Animals

Liberal lawmaker Sophie in 't Veld says the European Union's survival depends on overcoming creeping sclerosis, ending acquiescence to autocrats, and embracing the kind of political spectacle that captures the public imagination.

The climate allies Europe needs

With the COP26 climate conference about to get underway in Glasgow, major breakthroughs look elusive. Among the spectres at the feast are raging geopolitical tensions, high energy prices, the ongoing pandemic and a lack of diplomatic vigour from Europe.

Hedegaard on the hazards of stalling climate action

In 2009 Connie Hedegaard presided over the Copenhagen climate conference that ended in rancour — and left Europe on the sidelines. Hedegaard went on to become the first European commissioner for climate action.

Book Club: The Last Bluff

In this first EU Scream Book Club, co-authors of The Last Bluff recount how the world watched in awe — and often admiration — as a scrappy government in Athens tried to stare down Europe's financial and political establishment.

A hunger strike at the heart of Europe

This summer some 450 undocumented workers and migrants in Brussels refused food during two months. They were protesting Belgian immigration rules that human rights officials and campaigners say arbitrarily obstruct them from legal and stable residency.

Eurocrats who look like Europe

There is a double standard at the heart of the European Commission. Women — mostly white women — benefit from affirmative action when applying for jobs. But people of colour seeking advancement do not benefit from special consideration.

First aid for Polish democracy

Parallels with the Soviet era are increasingly evident in Poland — where the ruling coalition hounds judges and captures courts.

Why Ursula von der Leyen won't go

Ursula von der Leyen appears secure in her job as president of the European Commission. That's despite a troubled vaccine rollout in which delayed deliveries can cost lives and livelihoods.

Keeping the Red Flag flying

The hard-left is often associated with the colours red for revolution, and black for anarcho-syndicalism. But the movement is more and more green these days too.

Taking Brexit personally

James Crisp has Boris Johnson's old job in Brussels covering EU affairs for The Daily Telegraph. He often writes with that jaundiced eye on the European project you'd expect from a correspondent on a venerable Conservative UK newspaper.

When Conservatives endanger democracy

In this episode Daniel Ziblatt discusses the dilemmas facing Europe's modern-day conservative parties — including the German Christian Democratic Union and the European People's Party.

Citizen deliberation in light of an insurrection

Can the EU do more to hold back the kinds of malign forces that overran the US Capitol? It's not an idle question. Democratic shortcomings in the EU are regularly invoked by the far-right to whip up nationalist sentiment.

Honesty is the best policy

Politicians mostly talk about shutting migrants out. That endangers migrants' lives and obscures an important truth: that Europe already relies on large numbers of migrants for farming and manufacturing.

Showdowns over the rule of law

Brussels is increasingly expected to serve as the European Union's sheriff on rule of law — but its ability to enforce adherence to democratic norms and values remains weak.

Europe on a power trip

"Strategic autonomy" has become the mantra for European Union officials. But now with Joe Biden as US president-elect, and prospects for a renewal of trans-Atlantic ties, the urgency and relevance of the concept are again up for debate.

Apostles of intersectionality challenge Europe

Intersectionality is the concept that overlapping identities — disability, gender, race and sexual-orientation for example — create forms of discrimination that can go unaddressed. But many EU leaders are wary of the kind of identity politics that intersectionality implies.

Online violence: Stories from Bulgaria and Spain

Bigots and far-right extremists are using online violence to try to silence feminists and LGBT people. It's a cowardly tactic since perpetrators don't even have to meet their targets. We hear stories from two Europeans on the receiving end

Ylva Johansson on Migration and Drama Queens

Commissioner for home affairs, Ylva Johansson, would like to win the approval of all EU member states for a new proposal for a common asylum and migration policy — something her predecessors failed to do.

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