Press

A trade surplus is not always a sign of strength

04 March 2009
Financial Times
There has been a queue of commentators arguing that the strong economic performance of the US and the UK in the run-up to the financial crisis was an illusion, a product of excessive borrowing and an inflated financial sector.

Wij moeten de zwakke eurolanden helpen

02 March 2009
NRC Handelsblad
Twaalf maanden geleden leek het nog ondenkbaar dat een EU-lidstaat in een staatsschuldencrisis zou belanden. Toch behoort dit nu tot de mogelijkheden.

Fighting the leaderless jihad

01 March 2009
E!Sharp
The planned closure of the controversial US interrogation centre and prison at Guantánamo Bay should usher in deeper transatlantic cooperation in the fight against terrorism and other common security threats.

How to avoid a eurozone debt crisis

24 February 2009
The Wall Street Journal
Twelve months ago it seemed inconceivable that any European Union member could face a sovereign debt crisis. It would have been the stuff of fantasy to argue that Ireland or Austria could be among those at risk.

Belarus: An artful balancing act

23 February 2009
International Herald Tribune
Compared with most former Soviet states, Belarus has a lot going for it. The government is less corrupt than in neighboring Russia and Ukraine. Belarus has no oligarchs, since the state never sold its big companies, and social inequalities are low.

The Runway 3 red herring

22 January 2009
The Guardian
Simon Jenkins, Martin Kettle and Polly Toynbee are columnists I respect and quite often agree with. So when they - and many Comment is Free contributors - join the George Monbiots of this world in attacking the proposed third runway for Heathrow, I read them carefully.

Pipe down, price up

Tomas Valasek
06 January 2009
The Guardian
The Russian-Ukrainian gas dispute is turning from a bilateral spat into a regional crisis. EU countries that share a border with Ukraine have reported dramatic drops in the volume of gas deliveries.

Review: Pipelines, politics, and power: The future of EU-Russia energy relations

Philip Gordon
02 January 2009
International Affairs
As energy prices rose dramatically during the early years of this decade, Europeans began to realize the degree to which their dependence on Russia for energy supplies complicated an already difficult relationship. Russia's abrupt application of market prices to gas exports to Ukraine in 2006 (which led Ukraine, in turn,...

Defending European defence in partnership with NATO, strengthening the EU's military muscle is the right idea

Tomas Valasek
09 December 2008
The Wall Street Journal
Ten years ago in St. Malo, Tony Blair and Jacques Chirac launched the European security and defence policy, or ESDP. They had the right idea: The European Union needs a defence arm if it is to play a global role, and with the demand for peacekeepers rising, ESDP could give a needed boost to the efforts of NATO and the United Nations. Or at least that was the theory.

Unilateral Germany threatens to weaken Europe

05 December 2008
Financial Times
In Brussels, Paris, Washington and other capitals, one increasingly hears the same complaint: Germany is acting unilaterally. On a broad range of issues, the Germans seem to think the European Union no longer advances their interests and are more prone to go their own way. Germany’s foreign policy has evolved...

Crisis shows imbalances are not sustainable indefinitely

27 November 2008
Financial Times
Sir, Paul Betts (“All for one, but none for all to revive Europe’s fortunes”, November 24) argues that Germany should wait for other countries to boost their economies (and hence demand for German exports) rather than taking steps to boost German domestic demand.

This is no time to listen to the siren call of the euro

Philip Whyte, Simon Tilford
14 October 2008
The Guardian
Since the Labour party entered office in 1997, the UK economy has become more "European". One of the government's first acts in office was to sign up to the EU's social chapter. It followed this with the introduction of a minimum wage in 1999, along with sustained increases in public expenditure.

Don't undermine free markets

Philip Whyte, Simon Tilford
08 October 2008
International Herald Tribune
Commentators and politicians have been falling over themselves to read the last rites to "Anglo-Saxon" capitalism. Anglo-Saxons have undoubtedly been guilty of profligacy and hubris.

The Russian challenge

Katinka Barysch
03 October 2008
Yale Global Online
The US and Europe increasingly seem at odds over an assertive Russia, flush with oil money, strong militarily and ambitious with an educated, nationalistic population. This two-part YaleGlobal series explores the implications for Europe, the US and the world.

Brussels's Bad Medicine

02 October 2008
The Wall Street Journal
Europe's prosperity depends on its developing and sustaining high-tech businesses. Twenty years ago, Europe was the center of the pharmaceutical industry, which invested roughly 30% more in R&D here than in the U.S.

Europe and the Georgia-Russia conflict

Katinka Barysch
30 September 2008
Open democracy
The European Union played a key diplomatic role in mediating the Caucasus war. Now it must do more to manage the wider tensions with Russia that have followed. Katinka Barysch offers a policy checklist.
The headlines about the conflict in the Caucasus in August 2008 have been replaced by news about...

The new Russia and how to deal with it

18 September 2008
Open democracy
Dmitri Medvedev compares '8/8', the date of Georgia's attack on South Ossetia, with 9/11. The Russian president is right that the war in Georgia, and the way the West reacted, have fundamentally changed the worldview of many Russians.

Conflit russo-géorgien: un nouveau souffle pour l'OTAN

09 September 2008
RIA Novosti
Le conflit entre la Géorgie et la Russie donnera une nouvelle impulsion à l'OTAN, a estimé dans un entretien accordé à RIA Novosti mardi le directeur du Centre britannique pour la Réforme européenne, Charles Grant.
"L'OTAN a été confrontée au problème de son activité à l'issue de la "guerre froide". Certes...

Europe must bring Ukraine into the fold

Tomas Valasek
07 September 2008
In a spectacular case of bad timing, Ukraine’s government all but collapsed last week. President Viktor Yushchenko withdrew most of his deputies from the ruling coalition with Yulia Tymoshenko, the prime minister.

The bear's Achilles heel

15 August 2008
The Guardian
For many American commentators, plucky little Georgia has been the victim of Russian imperialism. The Guardian's Seumas Milne takes an simplistic view: Russia is blameless for a war caused by US "expansion".