Monthly Archives

May 2018

European, Politics

Reforming the European Union!

Rather than letting “Brexit” divide the Nation, the UK should take a lead in reforming the E.U.   Having just returned from London after 4 years absence, I was reminded of the greatness and attractiveness of the British capital. However, I was struck by the contrast between the apparent aloofness of the population concerning Brexit and the spectacle of a deeply divided country sleepwalking towards an uncertain future. This may not be as surprising as it seems: when talking to – or reading the pronouncements of – real or self-appointed experts on the subject, it became fairly obvious that discussions centred mainly around arcane legal or practical technicalities leading to dubious conclusions that were more influenced by political ideology and/or…

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European, Politics

Is there an alternative to a “Federal European Union”?

The current mood is reminiscent of the atmosphere prevailing on the eve of WWI which was so admirably described by Christopher Clark in his book “The Sleepwalkers”. The main difference is that the unconcern of the period has been replaced by ignorance, misunderstanding and a disregard for the reality of a situation in which political, social and technological factors are intertwined in a maze, the complexity of which has become difficult to apprehend. Combined with the increasing rejection of the political establishment by the population and the incapacity to bring concrete solutions to people’s preoccupations, a dangerous situation is emerging in which individualism is growing significantly, at the expense of collective interests. As far as the EU is concerned, its…

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Uncategorized

Inequalities

“Liberté –Egalité -Fraternité”, this emblematic motto adorns the front of every French Town Hall and boasts the new values that the country adopted on the morrow of its great revolution. Since then France has undertaken, with undeniable success, to propagate them worldwide. If the words seem to form a coherent juxtaposition, they express, nevertheless, concepts that belong to complementary but by no means identical, categories. “Liberty” can be classified as belonging to the list of “human rights”, limited only by the freedom of others. “Equality” is an aspiration towards which one can yearn without ever reaching it. “Fraternity” is a sentiment, applied voluntarily, aiming at reducing inequalities. The social compact implicit in the adoption of this motto is based on…

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European, Politics

The new aspects of international conflicts.

  Communication surrounding the Syrian crisis offers a perfect example of thoroughly outdated rhetoric. Indeed, the subtle analysis of commentators draw the attention – correctly – on the dangers of a military escalation of the conflict which has the capacity of destroying the planet; however, for this very reason, it is unlikely to happen as was the case during the Cuban missile crisis many years ago. Nevertheless, confrontations have not disappeared since then, but have developed new characteristics among which one can pinpoint “terrorism”, “cyber warfare” or “sanctions”. If the UN was created with the hope to bring an end to “classic” wars, one can but acknowledge the total inadequacy of its charter to deal with these new forms of…

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