Kassandra

The weeks before the first 100 days of President von der Leyen: Dilemmas...

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European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen went from zero to hero, with her College of Commissioner’s being approved by the European Parliament with 461 votes in favour, 157 votes against, and 89 abstentions....

Tono takes Zabreb by storm, stands up for EPP’s values

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It took a strong showing of EPP Secretary General Antonio López-Istúriz to set the tone of the entire congress of the EPP, and give a glimpse as to the EPP’s cementing of their values...

Weber’s renewed force

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EPP Chairman Manfred Weber gave a very powerful speech in Zagreb as well. German Chancellor Angela Merkel symbolically spent some time sitting between Weber and European Commission President-elect Ursula Von der Leyen. Weber, who...

Tusk makes new first EPP impression

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Newly elected EPP President Donald Tusk made a new first impression in Zagreb. And it was positive. “After five years, I am fed up of being the European Bureaucrat-in-chief; I am ready to fight,...

The Congress afterparty brought to you by Star Alliance

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Berlusconi’s popularity was at its peak at the 2006 congress in Rome. And while the luscious dinners and afterparties in Rome were much more extravagant than the also beautifully organized Zagreb congress, it seems...

VdL’s theatrical stomping ground

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European Commission President (-elect for a few more fleeting moments) Ursula von der Leyen made a major speech in the EPP’s congress in Zagreb, showcasing her EPP team of Commissioners, and talking about her...

The Berlusconi show

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It was nearly strange to imagine. Silvio Berlusconi, at 83 years old, seemed to be more popular than ever at the EPP congress in Zagreb. Constantly chased by cameras, starstruck fans (who took countless...

Communisme à la Chinoisé

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The threat of China is global and concerns the entire Western Bloc – which now consists of the US and Europe – and Russia. The West, with its wider vision and in-depth understanding, now...

Yes, but how?

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President Jean Claude Juncker wanted a “political” Commission and to this effect, despite the rigidity of the Commission “system”, he made some progress. The new president, Ursula von der Leyen, is even more ambitious....

Monkey See, Monkey Do

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The White House is working with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to drastically limit the use of scientific research to determine public health regulations, despite the fact that it will reduce the scientific underpinnings...

Communism is dead, Communists can still be useful

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Global disorder is the manifestation of an ever-changing world. The conservative pillars of societies insist that they view it as an infectious disease curable with third generation social antibiotics. This includes the suppression of...

Brexit, EU unity, and non-negotiable democracy

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Every time we think this whole Brexit madness is going to finally come to an end, it just doesn’t. Always one step forward, two steps back – and with every move that the UK...

Enlargement dezinformatsia

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France is taking the lead in filling the vacuum as a result of Brexit and several EU political leaders made a series of false allegations against Paris as part of their effort to argue...

Let’s get one thing straight: Reforms are, first and foremost, for national benefit

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We can all argue about whether enlargement of the European Union is a good thing or not, but let us not try to sell to our citizens and to the citizens of the applicant...

Enlargement Kaput

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As New Europe wisely predicted in recent weeks, neither Albania nor North Macedonia received a date at the EU Summit to launch negotiations for their EU accession. Both countries needed the date, particularly Albania as...

Enlargement yes, but why…

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Western Balkan countries are anxious to get a date to start entry negotiations and this is good because most of the countries of the former Yugoslavia suffered a lot in the last three decades....

France unmoved on EU Enlargement

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Recent diplomatic exchanges cited by Reuters indicate France has not backed off of its opposition to the immediate launch of EU accession talks with Albania or North Macedonia, leaving the situation much as it...

Good-bye Downing Street, bienvenue Élysée!

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After so many good-byes, though without leaving, I think that the time for the United Kingdom has come to say a final adios! to the bloc within a matter of days; maximum, in a...

Enlargement tales: Albania, North Macedonia, and influencers of a different kind

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On October 15, the General Affairs Council may decide whether to issue a starting date for EU Membership negotiations with Albania - the first in line to join - and North Macedonia, who is...

LIFE is easy with spaghetti con salsa italiana (abbondante)

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Margrethe Vestager is the new Executive Vice-President for Competition, plus Digital, who was graciously nicknamed by Donald Trump as “tax lady” and who earned great praise for raising record multi-billion fines on American tech...

Scary Movie in Cine Beijing

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Whoever thinks that last week’s shooting of a Hong Kong demonstrator while Chinese President Xi Jinping addressed - in a Mao Zedong-style suit, no less - a parade of 100,000 adoring people in Beijing,...

Scary Movie (Part II) (update Oct. 3 08:47 CET)

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Whoever thinks that the shooting of a Hong Kong demonstrator while Chinese President Xi Jinping addressed - in a Mao Zedong-style suit, no less - a parade of 100,000 people in Beijing was not...

Scary Movie

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The Chinese experiment, which separates the Communist socio-political system into a political dictatorship and a Wild West-type market economy, has failed. In China, the market economy is private but under the total control of the...

Hungary and Romania need to send other Commissioner candidates after new European Parliament vote

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In a morning vote on 30 September 2019, the European Parliament Legal Affairs Committee voted that Commissioners-designate from Hungary and Romania cannot stay on. The two separate votes pertained to whether the Commissioners-designate are...

Von der Leyen faces dilemma as OLAF concludes Polish Commissioner-designate Wojciechowski must return €11,243

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The European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) has concluded its investigation of Polish Commissioner-designate Janusz Wojciechowski and recommended the European Parliament recover €11,243 that had been unduly paid to him while he was a Member of...

Kovesi clears hurdles and prepares to take charge of EPPO

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Will the new Chief Prosecutor of  EPPO be A European from Romania or a Romanian in Europe? Laura Codruta Kovesi has cleared (perhaps) the most difficult hurdle in her appointment as Europe›s first Chief Prosecutor, though...

Von der Leyen’s first big win: Diversion from substance

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While some squabble over the European Way of Life, von der Leyen is working on everything that matters Political backlash for a non-issue followed by the subsequent media frenzy. This is the only way to...

A fair way out

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Never is late, but sooner or later late becomes too late. Absolutist Europe died four centuries ago as a result of the Renaissance and was slowly and gradually replaced by compromise. Nowadays, however, instead of...

Italy – EU turn the page, for now

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A few years ago, my son who has passion for watches, went to our family house in Corfu and returned to Brussels wearing a beautiful, antique Omega watch that he proudly showed me. I...

Watch your language CJEU!

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Because Kassandra can always have more friends Kassandra gets some fan mail, and sometimes even hate mail. What we love most is communication from concerned citizens and stakeholders. A few days ago, Kassandra was made...

Greek tax collectors prepare for hand-to-hand combat

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Over the summer, as the Greek government sought to curb tax evasion during its peak season, several incidents of attacks of tax collectors took place. Some came away unscathed, being chased out of restaurants,...

Change on the horizon; brace for impact

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The European Union has entered into a phase of critical uncertainty. The Brits made the second blunder in their post-war history with Brexit and are totally confused. The first mistake was that upon the end...

It’s time to make EU funding opportunities equal for all

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Sucking the LIFE out of Europe’s economy As Kassandra has explained in the last year, the tender for the monitoring of the LIFE program worth €80 million over four years, has been at least problematic....

Ursula von der Leyen’s incoming Commission is now ready

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With former Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni being announced as the 27th European Commission member for the incoming mandate, President-elect Ursula von der Leyen is now ready to present a complete picture to the...

What were the Americans thinking at the Thessaloniki International Fair in 2018?

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As the 84th Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF) is inaugurated 7 September, high-level officials, pundits and regional business leaders will be focusing on economic policy pronouncements made by Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, this year...

Why the Cypriot Auditor General undermines the solution of the Cyprus’ EU related waste...

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Despite its immense natural beauty and the fact that its heavy industry is tourism, the Mediterranean island of Cyprus is facing a growing waste management problem and is missing a golden opportunity to absorb European Union funds to tackle this key issue that is rapidly becoming one...

Can Ursula, be the emerging Margaret of Europe?

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The fact that in last spring’s European elections, Euroscepticism did not hit the record levels many were afraid of, does not mean that the danger is over. On the contrary, the threat is there...