Ceps bilde

Book Publication: Is Europe Facing a Democracy Crisis? 

Author:Rasmuss Filips Geks

The European Union has a democracy problem. The polycrisis that has plagued the EU for years has led to a cacophony of voices calling for fundamental change to the integration project. Yet despite the shock of the Brexit referendum and the electoral upsets caused by nativist parties across the continent, few of the plans for EU reform include concrete proposals to address the perennial democratic deficit. Read

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We Will Unite the Continent in the End! 


You are not acceding to a market, you are acceding to a political Union that is more political than 10 years ago and most likely will be more political in 10 years. If you want a political Union to function, you have to give it the institutional means to do so. If that means renouncing a couple of votes in the Council or the rotating presidency, I think that is a price worth paying. Read

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Poland’s Referendum – choosing between a sin and a miracle? 1

Author:Dace Akule

A leading EU-sceptical movement sent a letter allegedly written to a Byelorussian mother by her son living in the EU. In the letter posted at the end of 2005, the son complains about the high prices and asks for one kilo of real, natural ham. Read

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Transatlantic Relations: A crisis, but not a rift 


I was very critical of Germany when it announced that it would not send its forces to Iraq under any circumstances. In diplomacy and politics it is very important to keep one’s options open. On the other hand, I did understand the Latvian reaction. I can understand some of the leading politicians, who – based on their personal biographies – felt that an autocratic leader should be disciplined. Read

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Let's go Slovakia, let's go, everyone! 

Author:Dace Akule

The official Yes campaign started only 2 weeks before the referendum and it cost almost one million Euro. Several NGOs have announced their plans to file a complaint with the Constitutional court - they claim the referendum was undemocratic, as the few public discussions on the EU excluded EU-sceptics. Read

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The Hungarian EU referendum - a passive choice? 


An evaluation of the three-month long government campaign reveals that it did not address the important questions of accession. Instead, the huge pro-EU posters said, “Can I open a confectionery in Vienna? YES!”, “Are there nice girls in Europe? YES”, “May I eat poppy-seed bread in Europe? YES”, etc. Read

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The next great challenge: turning our attention eastward 


The problem of how to deal with the strong-arm tactics of Russia’s oil-pipeline monopoly has lain bare the exceptionally soft underbelly of our nation’s foreign policy and is but a foreshadowing of the great reevaluation of priorities and policy that awaits us in the near future. Read

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Iraq (2). The Interest of small States in the International Legal Order 


The war against Iraq is unlawful, so is the official support of military action in Iraq without a UN Security Council resolution. The UN Charter does not say that if one country breaches a binding resolution, other countries have the right to attack it. The precedent thus created is especially dangerous for small countries like Latvia, which has experienced the consequences of a failure of enforcing international law. Read

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EU foreign policy: destined to fail 


A common foreign policy cannot succeed because it is contrary to the EU's inherent identity as an organization of sovereign states. If it is to be realized, member states must, by definition, be deprived of the sovereignty that they would never agree to relinquish. Read

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Slovenians back the slogan “At Home in Europe, Safe in NATO” 

Author:Dace Akule

Slovenia could well go down in history as the most EU-optimistic candidate country, as Slovenes seemed to agree that the country had received a very good deal in the accession negotiations. For NATO the support was lower, but here one of the major turning points was the assassination of Serbian Prime Minister Zoran Djindjic. Read

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The EU referendum in Malta: slogans lose to negotiation results 1


The EU supporters won out because they had a package to sell - the results of Malta’s EU negotiations - while the opposition only used slogans promoting a concept without any content. However, next month’s general elections will be Malta’s second EU referendum. Read