By granting candidate status to Ukraine and Moldova and by recommitting to the EU membership of the Western Balkans, the European Union opened a new phase of its enlargement which will redesign the European political map again. It was undoubtedly the right decision to assert European sovereignty and also to welcome an embattled country which is showing with bravery that it belongs to the European future and not to a war of the past. A war of the past in Europe because it combines the clash of empires of WW I with the clash of political regimes of WW II. The future in Europe is being created by the values of freedom, equality, solidarity, democracy and sustainability and by a process of European integration which involves enlargement but also deepening. Deepening is a pre-condition for successful enlargement. But as enlargement has now become a political and moral imperative, the issue today is not about choosing between one or another. It is rather about how to make both with a new approach.
Even before the Covid pandemic has subsided, Europe is now facing another major shock in the form of the Ukraine war. It is threatening economic growth and jobs, and the accompanying soaring inflation is hitting low-income households especially hard. In all this, it is unclear how long the war will last and how drastic the restrictions on energy supply will be.
At Hungary’s elections last Sunday the worst-case scenario came about. The Orbán regime not only survived but also received a two-thirds constitution-making supermajority again. This is a very bad news not only for Hungary, but also for the European Union since Viktor Orbán’s regime will continue its troublemaker role and will disrupt European integration both […]
Progressives have long been arch defenders and advocates of the European project, pushing the EU to strengthen its union and advance European integration. Yet when it comes to EU defence, progressives have been less vocal. Perhaps this is down to defence being seen as the domain of conservatives and progressives prioritising domestic spending. But strengthening […]
In Germany, the SPD has won the elections and has the chance to lead the next government. However, Olaf Scholz will need both the liberal FDP and the Greens to support him to become chancellor. Both parties could alternatively support Armin Laschet, whose centre-right CDU/CSU-party came second. Talks between all four parties are underway and […]
On March 17, the Dutch went to the polls in the middle of the Covid pandemic and a faltering roll-out of the vaccination programme. In addition, the government had resigned shortly before the elections over a scandal of racial profiling of families claiming child support. Neither the scandal nor the botched vaccination scheme seemed to […]