Tuesday, July 24, 2007

A Fistful of Euros

A Fistful of Euros is a good, solid, multi-authored blog on general European affairs, not restricted to EU politics. Which makes it a refreshing change for those of us who spend so much time with our spectacled eyes glued to our EU navel that we feel s wee bit out of touch with the Real World!

It's somewhat left of centre in political sympathies, but reassuringly free of party politics and the inevitable defence of party lines that this entails.

A recent post that attracted my attention was from July 16, by Alex Harrowell, on the EU as a force for reform amongst its neighbours. This is a truism that you often hear in the Eurobubble, and the stock examples given are the EU's activities in promoting civil society in places like Georgia, Ukraine, and Russia, as well as the gradual adoption of the acquis communautaire and associated reforms in candidate countries such as Croatia and Turkey.

The nice thing about this post is that it gives an example of a specific EU action that has resulted in reform in a neighbouring country - the effect of the EU's blacklist of airlines on Moldova. Perhaps a little light on detail, but interesting nonetheless. If there are any Moldova experts reading this, I'd be curious to know if there was any background that A Fistful of Euros is missing and that might be important - e.g. pre-existing plans to ban the banned airline, the detailed context of national politics, the role of Russia and other neighbours, etc.

Anyway, A Fistful of Euros, well done for being thought-provoking. Keep up the good work.

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