The Struggle for Europe

Discussion of current events
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Sertorio
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Re: The Struggle for Europe

Post by Sertorio » Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:21 am

Europeans' trust in US as world leader collapses during pandemic

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/ ... 1593416785

The coronavirus crisis has caused a dramatic deterioration in the European public perception of the US, extensive new polling reveals.

More than 60% of respondents in Germany, France, Spain, Denmark and Portugal said they had lost trust in the United States as a global leader.

A report based on the survey’s findings argues that the shock of the pandemic has “traumatised” European citizens, leaving them feeling “alone and vulnerable”.

In almost every country surveyed, a majority of people said their perception of the US had deteriorated since the outbreak. Negative attitudes of the US were most marked in Denmark (71%) Portugal (70%), France (68%), Germany (65%) and Spain (64%). In France, 46% and in Germany 42% said their view of the US had worsened “a lot” during the pandemic.

In an analysis of the data, the policy experts Susi Dennison and Pawel Zerka say that trust in the US is “broken” as a result of its handling of the health crisis and that support for the transatlantic alliance has been “hollowed out”‘.

Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, warned in an interview with the Guardian on Friday that the world could no longer take it for granted that America still aspires to be a global leader. The survey suggests that public opinion is already conscious of the shift.

The report states: “Europeans’ trust in the US is gone. Many have been appalled by the [US’s] chaotic response to Covid-19; the lack of solidarity it showed with Europeans in the 12 March closure of its border to members of the Schengen area; and its lack of leadership in tackling the coronavirus crisis at the global level – or even engagement with the issue (beyond a war of words with the World Health Organization).”

The survey was commissioned by the Berlin-based European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR) thinktank and conducted by Datapraxis and YouGov at the end of April and the first week of May, across nine EU countries which together account for two-thirds of the bloc’s population.

So low is confidence in the future of the transatlantic partnership that only 2% of respondents in Germany and 3% in France said they would expect US support as Europe rebuilds its damaged economy.

“Europeans have digested the fact that the US is no longer necessarily a friend for Europe in times of need,” Dennison said.

The ECFR’s analysis suggests the shift in European attitudes transcends hostility to Donald Trump or his administration’s poor handling of the virus outbreak in the US.

Its authors believe there is now a more profound uncertainty about America as a force for good, America’s commitment to multilateralism and the US’s ability to lead the world.

Trump has been clear about his antipathy to the European Union for years. He accuses it of “ripping off” the US on trade. He recently ordered the withdrawal of 10,000 US troops from Germany.

Without the US at the head of the multilateral system, the authors conclude, Europeans want the EU to take more “ownership” of international challenges such as the pandemic and the climate emergency.

Initial data from the ECFR survey released last week showed a big surge in public backing for greater EU cooperation, despite widespread disillusionment at the EU’s poorly coordinated response and at national governments’ effectiveness in the crisis.

The authors believe the demand for more EU cooperation is grounded in the realisation that the post-1945 world order is changing and that relying on the US is not an option. They identify the US retreat from multilateralism as one of three reasons for a new mood of insecurity in Europe. The other factors are the flawed handling of the pandemic by European governments at national level, and the EU’s failure to take the initiative on global issues.

“Europeans now have to live with the knowledge that, despite all the structures we have put in place to protect ourselves at the EU and global level, our continent can move from complacency to full economic and social shutdown in a matter of weeks. This realisation may have profound consequences for the way that Europe engages with the rest of the world.”

The polling also found:

Strengthened support for action on climate change. More than 40% of people in six of the nine countries surveyed said their support for meeting climate commitments had increased despite the Covid-19 crisis.
An increase in negativity towards China. More than 60% of people in France and Denmark reported that their view of the country had deteriorated.

Widespread support (57%) for stricter controls at Europe’s external borders, which the authors say is linked to feelings of insecurity.

Attitudes to Russia remained largely unchanged, other than in Italy, where nearly a quarter of respondents said they perceived the country more positively as a result of the pandemic. Russia sent military doctors and supplies to Italy’s hardest-hit region, Lombardy, during the early phase of the emergency.
It may take some time, but Europe will finally free itself from the US, NATO and American imperialism. It should have happened long ago, but better late than never...

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dagbay
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Re: The Struggle for Europe

Post by dagbay » Tue Jun 30, 2020 4:23 am

Just an idea, in the current statue wrecking history remaking culture maybe people need to move priceless works of art from reach of vandals of France?
I'd rather be diving or flying alas for now I am on terra firma.

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Sertorio
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Re: The Struggle for Europe

Post by Sertorio » Tue Jun 30, 2020 4:41 am

dagbay wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 4:23 am
Just an idea, in the current statue wrecking history remaking culture maybe people need to move priceless works of art from reach of vandals of France?
Why France?...

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dagbay
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Re: The Struggle for Europe

Post by dagbay » Tue Jun 30, 2020 10:15 am

Not only but the riots and fires in Paris are alarming. And it's dominant Muslims are known for destruction of non-Muslim art and structures.
I'd rather be diving or flying alas for now I am on terra firma.

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Sertorio
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Re: The Struggle for Europe

Post by Sertorio » Tue Jun 30, 2020 10:29 am

dagbay wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 10:15 am
Not only but the riots and fires in Paris are alarming. And it's dominant Muslims are known for destruction of non-Muslim art and structures.
Knowing the French, I'm sure they would more readily remove their Muslim immigrants than their priceless works of art...

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Sertorio
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Re: The Struggle for Europe

Post by Sertorio » Thu Jul 02, 2020 4:13 am

Former German Chancellor Says U.S.-EU Alliance Could Now End
by Eric Zuesse for The Saker Blog
https://thesaker.is/germany-sitrep-form ... d-now-end/

A German equivalent to UK’s Financial Times and America’s Wall Street Journal is the Dusseldorf Handelsblatt or “Commerce Sheet,” which headlined on June 30th, “Former Chancellor Schröder: USA Ending Transatlantic Partnership”.

They reported:

Former German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder has condemned possible new US sanctions against the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline as “deliberate termination of the transatlantic partnership.” A draft law currently under discussion in the US Congress is “a widespread, unjustified attack on the European economy and an unacceptable interference with EU sovereignty and the energy security of Western Europe,” Schröder writes in his statement for a public hearing of the Economic Committee scheduled for Wednesday in the Bundestag.

The article closes:

Schröder sees the relations with the USA as “heavily burdened” by “escalating tariffs and going it alone” policy by the Americans. Schröder writes: “Economic fines against a NATO ally during the current economic recession are nothing other than a deliberate termination of the transatlantic partnership.”

This is as if Jimmy Carter or Barack Obama were to say that EU policymakers had a trade policy toward the U.S. that is so hostile and uncooperative that in order to comply with it, the U.S. would have to subordinate itself to the EU and lose some of its own sovereignty, and as if he were to tell the U.S. Congress that for them to okay the EU’s demands in this matter would be “nothing other than a termination of the transatlantic partnership.”

Congress has not yet passed this legislation (new economic sanctions legislation that is co-sponsored in the U.S. Senate by Republican Ted Cruz and Democrat Jeanne Shaheen) but it (“S.1441 – Protecting Europe’s Energy Security Act of 2019”) enjoys strong bipartisan support and has been considered almost certain to be passed in both houses of the U.S. Congress and signed into law by President Donald Trump. It is not a partisan issue in the United States.

Neither is it partisan in Germany. Both of Germany’s main political Parties (Schröder being SPD) support strongly the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline, which will be considerably more economical for supplying natural gas to the EU than would be the U.S. Government’s demand that American shipped fracked liquified natural gas be used, instead of Russian pipelined natural gas, in Europe. Though this U.S. legislative initiative is called “Protecting Europe’s Energy Security,” its overwhelming support in the U.S. Congress is instead actually for protecting U.S. fracking corporations. The bill’s title is only for ‘patriotic’ propaganda purposes (which is the typical way that legislation is named in the United States — as a sales-device, so as to sound acceptable not only to the billionaires who fund the Parties but also to the voters on election day).

Both of America’s political Parties are significantly funded by America’s domestic producers of fracked gas. One of the few proud achievements of U.S. President Obama that has been proudly continued by President Trump has been their boosting U.S. energy production, largely fracked gas, so as to reduce America’s foreign-trade deficit. However, if this control over the U.S. Government by frackers continues, then there now exists a strong possibility, or even a likelihood, that the transatlantic alliance will end, as a result.
Little by little Americans are making it not only possible but probable for Europe to set itself free from US diktat. The US/Europe alliance is comatose and is expected to die in the near future. Which is very good news indeed. Europe should be partners with Russia to make sure the world is not dominated either by the US or by China. Now that the EU has freed itself from the UK it is to be hoped that we will move in the right direction.

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