This is a blog written by alumni of the EPA MA programme in Maastricht.
Bursting the Bubble

Charismatic mediator: Donald Tusk, the new president of the European Council

1 September 2014 | by

Donald Tusk, the newly elected President of the European Council, is hardly a surprising nomination. His candidacy had been considered in the bidding process for several months, although he kept distancing himself from the recurring rumours about his plan to move to a new job in Brussels. But who is he? A moderate, compromise-seeking leader with strong political talents, or a waving flag, conforming to where the wind blows from?

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Summer Holiday

10 August 2014 | by

Dear readers,

We would like to thank you for all your support in reading, liking and sharing our articles in the past year. Our commitment to you is the driving force behind our efforts in continuing to deliver interesting and good quality articles.

During the upcoming summer weeks our team will be taking some time off, but do not despair! We will be back in September with more to look forward to.

The team wishes you a very wonderful summer!

Having learnt from mistakes of past, the EU must avoid new ones: Need for a more inclusive & enlarged Union

30 July 2014 | by

Europe, in its long and eventful history, has become both victim to and perpetrator of the most horrific acts of brutality. This year marks the hundredth anniversary of one of the bloodiest displays of carnage that human kind has ever seen. World War I was bound to end all wars and a decisive victory of one side or the other was to cement the world order for centuries to come. Instead, one bloodshed was replaced by another; World War II. Not having learnt lessons from the Great War, Europe was again plunged into a conflict, which this time proved far more consequential than anticipated.

The heaviness of individual and collective suffering served as an impetus to rebuild Europe on the grounds of mutual economic, cultural and social dependence. Although this moment marked the end of a long and painful evolution, by moving from conflicts to cooperation, it has proven to be the beginning of something even bigger: the birth of the European integration. This has consequently led to the creation of the European Union, which is now the best testimony to Europe’s understanding of the lessons of its violent past.

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European Crisis: 28 July 1914 & 28 July 2014 – Marking the Centennial of World War I

28 July 2014 | by

“Against the vast majority of my countrymen… in the name of humanity and civilisation, I protest against our  share in the destruction of Germany. A month ago Europe was a peaceful comity of nations: if an Englishman killed a German, he was hanged. Now, if an Englishman kills a German, or if a German kills an Englishman, he is a patriot who has deserved well of his country.” Bertrand Russell

“We see men living with their skulls blown open; we see soldiers run with their two feet cut off …Still the little  piece of convulsed earth in which we lie is held. We have yielded no more than a few hundred yards of it as a prize to the enemy. But on every yard there lies a dead man.”  Erich Maria Remarque

The word [Economic] ‘crisis’ or ‘The Crisis’ has been a fixture of global and European headlines since 2008. The World Financial Crisis (although this continues to change) became the European Sovereign Debt Crisis and still forms the fundamental base for many policies being adopted at European level, as well as a mantra for many Eurosceptics, who recently increased their presence in the EU’s policy machine. 100 years ago to this day, 28. July 1914, crisis was also the mot de jour. The July Crisis was the final tipping point before the Ausbruch of the First World War – the first shots of which were fired “today” between Austrian and Serbian forces – the first of the many great traumas Europe, and the wider world, were set to endure in the 20. Century.

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Eurosceptics are not anti-European. They are just wrong!

18 July 2014 | by

Those of us who believe in a more integrated Europe have moved too closely and too comfortably to the idea that the best way to fight Euroscepticism is to label it as an anti-European movement operating on the fringes of our societies. Yet the recent surge of anti-EU parties, wishing to turn the time back proves that they are but a marginal force. Eurosceptics may represent a vision for Europe that is backward looking and outdated, but they do represent a vision that is becoming increasingly popular with more and more people. They despise the EU and wish to return to a system of limited cooperation (if any at all) between nation states. Some would say they love Europe but hate the EU. Clearly their vision of Europe does not fit with that of those arguing on behalf of the ever closer union. However, this does not make them the anti-Europeans that we often make them to be. For our own sake and for the sake of the future of the European Union, let us be honest: Eurosceptics are not anti-European. They are just wrong!

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