The coronavirus pandemic has strained the EU’s efforts to promote democracy. Nowhere is this clearer than in the Western Balkans, where China and Russia have used vaccine diplomacy to strengthen their roles in the region.
EU funding mobilized for the Western Balkans’ green transformation could ultimately flow right into the coffers of Russia and China. The European Commission cannot ignore the geopolitical implications of its Green Agenda for the region.
To reap the benefits of being valuable partners in promoting democracy abroad, the Visegrad Four countries must address democratic backsliding at home, improve coordination among themselves, and make bigger financial commitments.
Poland and the EU are locked in a bitter battle over the rule of law. At stake is something so fundamental to both sides: the meaning and exercise of sovereignty.
Biden’s recognition of the killing and deportation of Armenians as genocide has caused outrage in Turkey. Dealing with a nation’s past is immensely complex. It can only be done by a country’s leaders and citizens.
Russia is bound to have prepared for different military scenarios in Ukraine. Spreading uncertainty is an essential part of Putin’s policy.
Three factors explain why most European countries have found it difficult to deal with the pandemic: an unsuitable level of integration, an inability to make rapid decisions, and a breakdown of trust between governments and the governed.
Branding Europe as a unique civilization undermines the EU’s attractiveness to the rest of the world. Europe is better served by reckoning with its colonial history and underlining the universality of human rights.
EU governments are undermining the rule of law, independent judiciaries, and vibrant media. What a bonus for Russia’s and China’s efforts to weaken and divide Europe.
Despite its ambitions, modern Georgia continues to wait for Europe’s full embrace. To turn romantic notions into more concrete realities, the next generation of Georgians must carve out a special place for themselves on the margins of Europe.