The European Union no longer exists, at least not as we know it. And the question is not what will be the form of the new Union, but rather why this Europe, which was the focus of so many of our dreams no longer exists. The answer is simple: today, all of the pillars that served to build and justify the existence of the European Union have collapsed.
Chief among these was the memory of the Second World War. A survey of German secondary school students in the 14-16 age bracket, which was published a little over a year ago, showed that a third of these young people did not know who Hitler was, and 40 per cent were convinced that human rights had been respected to an equal degree by every German government since 1933. This in no way implies that there is a nostalgia for fascism in Germany. No, it simply means that we now have to contend with a generation that has nothing to do with this history. Today the conviction that the EU continues to derive legitimacy from its roots in the war is in an illusion. Continue reading
Almost everyone is unprepared when it comes to fending off the Russian bear. So long as everyone continues to believe Russia is a backwards country, coupled with country leaders that continue to make concessions (i.e. Obama administration), this will continue to happen. Eventually, they will have first strike capability — if they don’t already. Every so often, and more often during the last few years, the ‘intelligence community’ is caught by ‘surprise’ about a new capability from countries such as Russia, China, Iran, etc…
According to the Svenska Dagbladet, after midnight on Mar. 29 (Good Friday), the Swedish radars detected six fast planes coming from the east, originating from the St. Petersburg area and overflying the Gulf of Finland.
In reality, the route the aircraft were flying wasn’t suspect: Russian bombers periodically fly across the Baltic Sea to reach the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad, located between Lithuania and Poland.
However, on Mar. 29, the two Tu-22M3 Backfire heavy bombers, capable of carrying cruise missiles and nuclear weapons, and their four Su-27 Flanker fighter jets escort got dangerously close to the Swedish airspace and, at 2 AM local time, they skirted Gotland island, some 30-40 kilometers off the Swedish territorial waters. Continue reading
In order to continue raising awareness that Moscow can still be on the doorstep of Europe and NATO, one can likely conclude that Moscow will repeat the nuclear preemptive attack training on Warsaw, Poland. As was reported a while ago:
Belarus and Russia will stage a joint military exercise on Belarusian territory in September, allegedly to rehearse a defense against a Polish attack on the country. Controversy concerning plans for Zapad 2013 relate to the issue of whether Moscow will repeat the pattern from Zapad 2009 and also rehearse a pre-emptive nuclear attack on Poland. On April 4, the Belarusian defense ministry issued a statement to refute this claim in response to an article that appeared on a Polish news website (Interfax, April 8). Continue reading
This is more or less Russia doing the string pulling, not Belarus, although it is in the Soviet proxy sphere of influence.
The West is becoming more and more alarmed about Zapad 2013 war games.
NATO troops will carry out military exercises in Poland practising defence of Estonia, while Belarus and Russia will repel an imaginary attack from Poland: They plan to rehearse a pre-emptive nuclear strike on Warsaw, Polska Times reports.
Tension between Russia and NATO has been growing since the beginning of the year. The Alliance prepares for Steadfast Jazz 2013 military exercises that will take place in Poland, Lithuania and Latvia, while Belarus and Russia will carry out Zapad 2013 war games. Continue reading
With some predicting China will import 79% of its oil by 2030, could domestic shale gas extraction help China meet its energy needs?
As shale gas fever sweeps through Beijing, analysts are looking at the costs and benefits of extracting what is increasingly a controversial source of energy. But for China, with its growing middle class, the immediate and long-term demand for energy has the potential to spark a revolution in shale gas before sufficient and safe technological know-how and regulations are developed.
The emergence of shale gas is a game changer. Countries that have traditionally relied on hydrocarbon exports for political clout (the Persian Gulf, Russia, Venezuela) will inevitably lose some of their petro power. Europe could become less energy dependent on Russian supply by importing liquid natural gas (LNG) from North America and by exploiting the potentially significant shale gas deposits in Poland and other countries. Australia, which has significant deposits and much of the pre-existing infrastructure to begin extraction, could see its clout in the energy politics of the region increase– forcing a significant redraft of Canberra’s “Australia in the Asian Century” White Paper. Continue reading
The deadlier the Syrian arsenal, the higher chance of being able to effectively strike back. The higher chance of being able to effectively strike back, the higher probability Damascus will be flattened. Point being: Dictator or not, and no one questions that Bashar al Assad is a bad man, this is a man who will not back down.
What makes him more dangerous is that he saw what happened with Saddam Hussein, Hosni Mubarak and then Muammar Gaddafi. He knows surrendering is a concrete death sentence.
He is nearly cornered with his back against the wall and will more than likely choose to use every means necessary to defend his corrupt regime. And by defence, we’re talking the use of WMDs. WMDs are the proverbial “line in the sand” and once they are used, all bets are off — ergo, Damascus shall be no more as foretold in Isaiah 17:1.
Hours after NATO agreed on Tuesday to send Patriot missiles to Turkey because of the crisis in Syria, Russia delivered its first shipment of Iskander missiles to Syria.
The superior Iskander can travel at hypersonic speed of over 1.3 miles per second (Mach 6-7) and has a range of over 280 miles with pinpoint accuracy of destroying targets with its 1,500-pound warhead, a nightmare for any missile defense system.
Although it’s going through a crisis, the new economic infrastructure groundwork is already being laid in for the next phase. The political differences are being worked out between nations who are willing to forge a new alliance and merge economic contributions. Some nations within the EU will stay, some will be shed. Many will be surprised to hear that China won’t be the next world leader. Enter the next superpower and make way for the United States of Europe — a last day’s 10 nation bloc with an army that no man has ever witnessed since the beginning of time. Today it’s being called upon and tomorrow it shall be formed.
Europe needs a new military structure to coordinate its combined operations, five EU nations said in a joint communique after a meeting in Paris on November 15. The foreign and defense ministers of France, Germany, Italy, Poland and Spain published the document to “confirm our readiness to foster an ambitious European policy in the field of security and defense.”
Poland’s Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski was surprisingly clear on his reasons for wanting a military. “If the EU wants to become a superpower, and Poland supports this, then we must have the capability to exert influence in our neighborhood. … Sometimes we must use force to back our diplomacy,” he said, according to the EU Observer. Continue reading
France plans to use the European Union’s military mission in Mali as a “Trojan horse” to create an EU military headquarters, the Telegraph reported November 11, citing a “senior French Defense Ministry source.” France is also planning a “major offensive” to stop individual nations from being able to veto defense issues.
The report comes ahead of a meeting between Germany, Italy, France, Spain and Poland in Paris to discuss how to move forward on European defense. Continue reading
Polish investigators conducting the inquiry into the plane crash that killed President Lech Kaczynski and 95 others in 2010 have detected “chemical structures similar to those in high-energy materials such as, for example, explosive materials” in the wreckage. However these materials could have come from many sources, including pesticides, according to prosecutors.
The announcement follows a report in Poland’s Rzeczpospolita newspaper which claimed traces of explosives including nitroglycerine and TNT had been discovered amid the wreckage of the TU-154 plane. Traces of the chemicals were found on the wings and in the cabin, including on 30 seats, during analysis in Russia, the paper reported. Continue reading
After the cataclysms of two world wars and the communist collapse, are we again seeing a new wave of German immigrants in Poland? While this is hardly an exodus yet, Poland has become one of the favourite places where Germans relocate permanently. In 2006, Poland ranked fifth among such countries, and today more Germans settle in Poland than in Spain or France. According to the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis), 9,434 German passport holders settled in Poland only last year, making Poland the third most popular destination for Germans relocating abroad, now ahead of Austria and behind only Switzerland and the United States.
Only a few years ago, when someone in Germany said they were going to work in Poland, the usual reaction was one of astonishment. Today no one in Germany finds this strange. For unemployed Germans, especially from the former DDR, Poland represents an opportunity for getting a permanent job, and for young graduates it offers the prospect of a faster career track and being entrusted with more ambitious and responsible tasks.
Full article: The Germans are coming back to Poland (Presseurop)
There’s no knowing how and where it will all end. But it is clear with every week that passes in Europe’s biggest crisis that Britain and the rest of the EU are heading in starkly different directions.
Last week the European commission signed up to the German blueprint, while unveiling problematic EU legislation making the European Central Bank the policeman of the eurozone banking sector. Britain will have no part of that, either.
On Tuesday the German foreign ministry extended the federalising economic policy-making to foreign and defence, along with 10 other EU foreign ministries carefully chosen to reflect the non-UK EU mainstream – small countries, big countries, single currency members and those outside the euro, core western states and newer east European countries. The likelihood is that the 11-country consensus will swell into a majority among the EU’s 27. Britain also stands apart from this. The 11 include Germany and France, the big ones, plus Italy, Spain and Poland – after Britain the biggest EU countries.
Full article: Britain and EU close to point of no return (Presseurop)
Pages five and six of the report (PDF file) detail the European Army.
In order to solve the euro crisis and survive in the modern world, European Union nations need to give up more powers, forge a political union and create new institutions like a European Army, 10 EU foreign ministers said in a report presented to EU officials on June 19.
Several of the finance ministers also called for the creation of what has been termed a “super-president” as a single figurehead for the union.
Sometimes called the “Berlin Group” or “Berlin Club,” the group began meeting at the suggestion of German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle to reinvigorate European integration.
“We take the current crisis to be a wake-up call,” its interim report said. “Time for far-reaching reforms is short …. What we are ultimately talking about is making the European Union and the euro irreversible.”
But the recommendations go beyond the current crisis. “New political and economic global players are gaining more influence,” said the report. “In dealing with these new powerhouses, we Europeans will only be able to uphold our values and pursue our interests effectively if we pool our strengths much more, both internally and in dealings with the outside world.”
In the long term, this means a “European Defense Policy,” which could include a “European Army” for some nations, the report said. When it comes to defense policy, “most foreign ministers feel that we should be more ambitious,” says the report.
In the shorter term, the European External Action Service (eeas)—the EU’s diplomatic, intelligence and military unit—must “be strengthened more.” The EU also needs “a more dynamic Common Security and Defense Policy, stronger eeas planning and command capabilities for civil-military operations, more pooling and sharing.”
The report also says, “We should also aim for a common seat in international organizations,” presumably referring to the EU’s longstanding goal of gaining a seat on the UN Security Council.
The group plans to continue meeting, focusing especially on how to make Europe “a global player.”
The 10 foreign ministers endorsing the report are from Germany, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal and Spain. French representatives also attended some of the meetings.
Full article: Report: 10 EU Nations Call for Economic and Political Union, and a European Army (The Trumpet)