Europe

The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker review – a feminist Iliad

This brilliant retelling of Homer’s epic poem focuses on the cost of war to women through the story of Briseis, Achilles’ concubine Emily Wilson The Guardian In The Iliad, a poem about the terrible destruction caused by male aggression, the bodies and pretty faces of women are the objects through which men struggle with each other for status. The women are not entirely silent, and goddesses always have plenty to say, but mortal women speak primarily to lament. They grieve ... Read More »

Turkey will reportedly start getting Russia’s advanced missile defense system in 2019, despite US efforts to block it

Russia will start delivering its advanced S-400 missile defense system to Turkey in 2019, the Interfax news agency cited Russian state arms exporter Rosoboronexport as saying on Tuesday. Christopher Woody and Reuters Business Insider A Turkish defense official said in April that the delivery of the S-400 batteries had been brought forward from the first quarter of 2020 to July 2019. Turkey and Russia negotiated the purchase throughout 2017, finalizing a deal worth some $2.5 billion at the end of ... Read More »

Is Washington pushing Turkey and Europe toward each other?

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is seeking new allies to offset Ankara’s worsening ties with Washington, which have come to a breaking point over Turkey’s continued detention of American pastor… Semih Idiz Al-Monitor Erdogan’s remarks show that his heart is set on Russia and China. Ironic as it may seem, though, Turkey’s crisis with the United States is rekindling its ties with Europe, even though these ties had hit rock bottom not so long ago. Recent European statements of support for ... Read More »

Turkey-U.S. Tiff Shows How Deep NATO’s Problems Run

Europe can’t just blame Trump if everything falls apart. Hal Brands Bloomberg NATO is having a rough summer. Fresh off President Trump’s deliberately disruptive behavior at the alliance summit in July, NATO has suffered a high-stakes blowup between two key members: the U.S. and… That dispute crystallized over the fate of an American pastor, Andrew Brunson, being held in Turkey on spurious charges of supporting a failed coup against Recep Tayyip Erdogan in 2016. It has been punctuated by economic sanctions, ... Read More »

Russia Considers Its Next Moves in Syria

The Syrian civil war has entered a new phase since the government takeover of Daraa and Quneitra in the country’s southwest. Stratfor Now, for the first time in the conflict’s seven-year history, all meaningful territory in Syria is either under the direct control of loyalist forces or subject to a significant foreign presence. The Syrian Democratic Forces and allied U.S. troops control the northeastern portion of the country, while Turkish troops are embedded in northern Aleppo province and Idlib province, ... Read More »

Why the EU can’t outsource its migration crisis

Brussels’ proposal to create processing centers in North Africa creates more problems than it solves. Melanie Ward Politico LONDON — When disagreements over how best to share the responsibility for asylum seekers and migrants in the European Union flared up earlier this summer, EU policymakers reached once again for a familiar proposal. Rather than seek out a compromise over how best to protect people seeking refuge from conflict or persecution, Europe’s leaders agreed to explore creating so-called “regional disembarkation platforms” — centers outside ... Read More »

The Greek Financial Crisis May Be Over, but Greece, and the Eurozone, Will Never Be the Same

Like many English words, “crisis” has a Greek origin — the word “krisis,” which in its initial form meant “a decisive moment.” Stratfor It is an ironic twist of fate that during the past decade the word has become so intimately linked to the country where it first originated. In recent years, any discussion about Greece has demanded acknowledgement of the deep financial, economic, political and social crisis that has afflicted the country since the late 2000s. And that makes ... Read More »

Greece exits its third bailout – but eurozone still has much to learn from the crisis

After nine years of unprecedented peacetime economic hardship, Greece exits its IMF bailout programme on August 20. Dimitrios Syrrakos The Conversation So ends a series of three bailouts organised by the so-called troika of the IMF, European Central Bank and European Commission. A total of €336 billion was lent to Greece in the wake of the financial crisis, to stop it defaulting on its national debt, with approximately €300 billion used so far. What’s more, over 90% of the funds ... Read More »

Denmark as a Model for American Socialists?

Here are some facts to consider before American “democratic socialists” look to Denmark for guidance, as Senator Bernie Sanders did during the 2016 presidential campaign. Lars Hedegaard Gatestone Institute First of all, Danes actually pay for their brand of socialism through heavy taxation. In Denmark, everyone pays at least the 25% value-added tax (VAT) on all purchases. Income tax rates are high. If you receive public support and are of working age and healthy enough to work, the state will ... Read More »

Defiant Erdogan Gets Political Support From Russia, China and Qatar

“The Turkish crisis is not in any way shape or form a financial one. It’s an unequivocal attempt to punish Erdogan for his geopolitical transgressions against the Pax Americana. Ivan Danilov Sputnik The crisis will either break Turkey or help radically reshape the global order.” US-Turkish relations are at their lowest point in recent history. The crisis only appears to be financial, even though it has some painful financial implications for Turkey. Although Erdogan’s incompetent monetary policy made Turkey excessively vulnerable to American economic sanctions, ... Read More »

SPD’s Andrea Nahles says Germany may give aid to Turkey

Ahead of Turkish President Erdogan’s trip to Germany in September, the SPD’s Andrea Nahles has said German aid is a possibility. It comes as tensions between the US and Turkey rise over the house arrest of a… DW The head of Germany’s Social Democratic Party (SPD) Andrea Nahles has said there could be circumstances in which Germany would provide financial assistance to Turkey during its economic… “A situation might arise where Germany needs to help Turkey, regardless of political tensions ... Read More »

Turkey’s currency collapse shows just how vulnerable its economy is to a crisis

If you happen to be a tourist in Turkey right now, consider yourself lucky. Otherwise, things look grim. Authors: The Conversation The Turkish lira has lost as much as a third of its value relative to the U.S. dollar in less than a month and recently hit a record low. As a result, all imported goods became more expensive practically overnight. And because Turkey is heavily dependent on foreign goods, most everything was affected, including gasoline, food, furniture and clothing. ... Read More »

Brexit: Ford warns UK it will take ‘whatever action is needed’ after profits hit

The car company blamed withdrawal from the EU for a £760m drop in profitability in 2017 Joe Watts Independent Car manufacturer Ford has issued a Brexit warning to British politicians that it will take “whatever action is needed” to protect its business. The ominous words came after the American car giant blamed uncertainty over Brexit for a colossal £760m drop in its European earnings in 2017. The firm pointed the finger at plummeting confidence in the UK since the Brexit referendum and raised fears of ... Read More »

A Nuclear Armed Germany Would Be a Mistake

It was a mistake to consider it in 1957 under Chancellor Konrad Adenauer and it is a mistake to consider it now in 2018. Tobias Fella The National Interest In German post-war mythology, the Federal Republic’s first chancellor Konrad Adenauer is synonymous with Western Integration and unshakeable trust in America. Yet, if push came to shove, he did not want to have to trust in U.S. nuclear protection. Thus, in a cabinet meeting in December 1956, he called for the Bundeswehr to ... Read More »

‘It’s NOT too late!’ Ex-civil service boss claims it’s NECESSARY to rethink & DELAY Brexit

BRITAIN may have to “pause” it’s exit from the European Union and “re-examine” its decision to leave the bloc if the Government is unable to strike a deal with Brussels, claimed the former head of the… Charlotte Davis Express Remainer Lord Kerslake claimed it is “necessary” to delay Brexit and insisted it is “not too late” to “reopen the question” on whether the UK should proceed with Brexit. Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme on Saturday, Lord Kerslake hit out at the Government’s ... Read More »

Bans on full-face Muslim veils spread across Europe

Washington: Earlier this month, Denmark became the fifth country in Europe to introduce a ban on face coverings in public places. Rebecca Tan The Age Washington Post The policy is widely viewed as being targeted at Muslim women who wear veils such as the niqab. Despite protests in the capital, Copenhagen, police have started enforcing the law in earnest. On August 3, a 28-year-old wearing the niqab, which covers the entire body except the eyes, was attacked by another Danish woman ... Read More »