The “leave” campaign won the referendum on withdrawing Britain from the European Union because the arguments on which the “remain” side relied made leave’s case. The remain campaign began with a sham, was monomaniacal with its Project Fear and ended in governmental thuggishness.
“VOA will present the policies of the United States clearly and effectively, and will also present responsible discussion and opinion on these policies.” — VOA Charter
By Barbara Slavin The results of the British referendum on leaving the European Union are another reminder of how much more thoughtful and yes, mature, the millennial generation is turning out to be. By large majorities, Britons under 45 voted to remain in the EU while their elders, with fewer years to bear the consequences, tossed […]
The US guards its democracy with more hysterical jealousy than any other country on earth….For the United States to tell us in the UK that we must surrender control of so much of our democracy – it is a breathtaking example of the principle of do-as-I-say-but-not-as-I-do.
The European Union doesn’t moderate British influence – it magnifies it. A strong Europe is not a threat to Britain’s global leadership; it enhances Britain’s global leadership.
It takes a lot to uproot oneself (and family), arrange travel via a trafficker, step onto a boat with a few possessions and no guarantees.They are called migrants or refugees—or both. Whichever term comes to mind, they are all people, many looking to improve their lot in life. But most, experts say, are running from instability and violence. According to the United Nations, the recent wave of migrants represents the largest dislocation of people since the Second World War. The estimated number of migrants in Europe runs in the hundreds of thousands, up to over a million registered asylum seekers. Thus, the term “migrant crisis,” which is useful shorthand, but doesn’t allow for the scale and scope of human suffering involved. As Europe struggles to cope with the influx (via the sea from Turkey or Libya into Greece or Italy, for the most part), America is bracing for the expected spillover.
Republican front-runner Donald Trump would go farther, having described the 28-state alliance as “obsolete” more than once during his push for the GOP presidential ticket. Members don’t pay up their fair share, or at all, and the clunky security organization is ill-suited for the war on terror, according to Trump. After the deadly terrorist attacks on Brussels, which just happens to be NATO’s homebase, and moves by Russian President Vladimir Putin in Ukraine and elsewhere, others have also raised questions about the relevance of the alliance in a shifting world order.
But this week while hosting NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg at the White House, President Barack Obama declared NATO “…a linchpin, a cornerstone of our collective defense and U.S. security policy.” Still, influential pundits and columnists have raised legitimate concerns about NATO’s lack of agility, bloated bureaucracy and lopsided financing that leaves the military bills largely in the hands of the United States.
There have been other public figures (former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates for one) to voice dim views of NATO, originally created in 1949 after the Second World War—a time when the Soviet Union was fully intact and on a mission to expand. Which raises yet another set of questions: has NATO evolved along with the world? And is the alliance equipped to respond to modern threats?
“Americans are from Mars and Europeans are from Venus.” With one pithy line 14 years ago, the foreign policy theorist Robert Kagan captured what seemed like obvious differences between the U.S. and Europe….in this time of political turmoil on both sides of the Atlantic, it’s so striking to watch Mars and Venus reverse their Bush-era alignment.
Just days before Greece began deporting migrants to Turkey under a deal to ease Europe’s migrant crisis, Amnesty International released a report alleging the forced return of Syrians in Turkey back to the very war zone they fled. Not all of the migrants stuck in temporary centers on the coast of Greece are Syrian, but they are migrants nonetheless — vulnerable, stateless and subject to abuse. Fears that terrorists (Syrian migrants are the most likely to be targeted as such) are among them have been stoked from Europe to the United States, while others are protesting what they say is an inhumane policy. Every single person who is now deemed a “migrant” has a story, a compelling reason for leaving their homes, often under dangerous circumstances that are hard to imagine. Migration is a fact of life, historically documented. More than 100 years ago, America was the destination point for those hoping for a better life. Now it’s Europe’s turn. After deadly terrorist attacks in the heart of Europe — Paris and Brussels — the basic human desire to create a better life is colliding head on with rising fears that terrorist groups like ISIS can attack at any time and in any place.
As it stands, the returns would contravene a number of European and international laws, including the European Convention on Human Rights, which states that a country must investigate each individual asylum case, and the 1951 UN Refugee Convention stating that no person be returned to a country where their life or freedom could be threatened.
By Barbara Slavin As the European Union struggles to find a way to reduce the inflow of Syrian refugees to manageable proportions, it is under pressure to downplay human rights violations by Turkey and Russia. Turkey, which has lost much of its democratic luster in recent years because of a crackdown on political opposition by […]
by James Kirchick Sometimes, when judging the merits of opposing arguments in a contentious debate, one can decipher the more just position merely by surveying the contestants on either side. The issue of whether or not the United Kingdom should remain within the European Union – which British voters will decide in a June referendum […]
Some 200,000 mainly Muslim children are entering German schools. Imagine if America, which has four times the German population, were to register 800,000 mainly Muslim children in schools in a few months. On reflection, don’t even try.
Europe’s entire security order, while not quite collapsing before our eyes, seems to be increasingly under strain and stress … This is bad news for the United States, of course, because a strong, confident, and united Europe represents the best pool of available partners for the U.S. in any part of the globe.