Europe

The Secrets Hidden Beneath the Palm Tree: A picture book about deafness

I’ll start with a disclaimer: I love Angeliki Pedersen, author of The Secrets Hidden Beneath the Palm Tree. We attend the same parish, and I think I must have met her the first time we visited here. She’s the kind of person that reaches out to strangers at coffee hour and makes them feel welcome. © Charlotte Riggle As Angeliki and I got to know each other, we learned that we’re more than just members of the same parish. We’re also ... Read More »

Secret probe shows Erdoğan planned purge of Turkey’s military long ago

The government of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan secretly launched an investigation to build a case for a purge in Turkey’s military as early as 2014 and enlisted the help of unsavory characters who… Abdullah Bozkurt Nordic Monitor According to secret documents obtained by Nordic Monitor, a number of former officers who were dismissed from the military in recent years for sexual misconduct were called in to give a statement by a… In exchange for filing criminal complaints against critics of ... Read More »

Germany’s refugee intake begins to boost economy as settlers soothe country’s worker shortage

To maintain economic well-being, country ‘needs about half a million immigrants every year’ In his native Syria, Mohammed Kassim worked as an electrician. Luisa Beck, Griff Witte The Inependent But having learned the trade informally, he lacked the credentials to show for it. Now, in his adopted homeland, the 30-year-old is receiving the training he never had and he is getting paid to do it by a company dangling the promise of a job that could vault him from struggling refugee ... Read More »

The European Union Can Barely Hold Itself Together—and Putin Knows It | Opinion

Brexit and similar populist movements in Europe have prompted Brussels to question itself and its policies. Theodore Karasik Newsweek Whatever happens to these insurgencies, there must be a wholesale re-examination of how the EU treats states and economies dependent on it —both inside and outside its borders. Since the founding of the European Union, it has almost by default become associated with international solidarity, open trade, and rights for citizens. This is a natural consequence of any union between countries ... Read More »

Turkey is playing both Russia and US

During the past week the Western press has reported Russian and Syrian bombing of north-western Idlib province and the flight of thousands of civilians from targeted villages. Michael Jansen Gulf Today Writers complain that Moscow and Damascus have been violating the “de-confliction” deal reached last year between Russia and Turkey with the aim of halting an all-out military operation against… Those who have reported the situation in this way are indulging in promulgating “fake news.” Russian and Syrian government forces ... Read More »

Inside Facebook’s European election war room

The social network has created a team in Dublin to counter wrongdoing, but political ads and misinformation are still reaching voters. Mark Scott Politico DUBLIN — In a sparsely decorated office in the center of the Irish capital, dozens of Facebook staffers are working to protect the upcoming European election. The group of twentysomething coders, engineers and content specialists sit hunched over multiple screens, scanning the platform for potential illegal behavior. Wall-mounted television monitors keep them up to date on the latest ... Read More »

Europe’s Glorious Years of Peace and Prosperity

The Munich Security Conference was a depressing gathering this February. By Michael A. McFaul The New York Times THE GLOBAL AGE Europe, 1950-2017 By Ian Kershaw Throughout the Cold War and for decades thereafter, Wehrkunde (as the conference was known when it started in 1963) was the premier event for Europeans and Americans committed to NATO, trans-Atlantic ties and the West. For decades, Senator John McCain led the American congressional delegation. In his last address to the conference in 2017, ... Read More »

Gambling industry fails to meet charity donation target

MPs call for compulsory levy as GambleAware reveals many firms gave £10 or less in 2018-19 Rob Davies The Guardian The gambling industry has fallen short of a target of £10m in voluntary donations to the leading charity that funds addiction treatment and research, fuelling renewed calls from MPs for a… Data released by GambleAware, the recommended recipient of donations, showed the industry gave it £9.6m in 2018-19, with some firms ensuring their presence on the list of donors by ... Read More »

Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un need the European Union

Much ink has been spilled analyzing the surprising turn of events at the US-North Korea Hanoi summit in late February. Tereza Novotná and Alessandro Ford Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists Accounts differ as to what happened, or which side overstepped first with its demands. At a late-night post-summit press briefing, North Korea sought to make its position abundantly clear: It would give up the nuclear production facilities in the Yongbyon complex in… The United States, on the other hand, has ... Read More »

Turkey’s deal with Sudan on intelligence and military affairs in limbo

Cooperation between Turkey and Sudan in intelligence and military affairs, spearheaded by ousted Sudanese leader Omar al-Bashir, was thrown into limbo when Islamist Turkish… Abdullah Bozkurt Nordic Monitor Having invested so much stock in al-Bashir, Erdoğan was frustrated to see that his credit may not be as good with the transitional government. Speaking at a ruling Justice and… He nonetheless vowed to continue supporting his brothers in Sudan. Erdoğan and his people point fingers at Egypt and Saudi Arabia in ... Read More »

Searching for the European spirit

The European Parliament will be held from May 23rd to 26th across the European Union (EU). Tara Varma ORF EU’s democratic foundations may be endangered not just by the rise of anti-European parties but also by the faltering efforts at renewing the European project. The European Parliament will be held from May 23rd to 26th across the European Union (EU). The Parliament is the only EU body elected by direct universal suffrage, thus constituting one of the EU’s main democratic ... Read More »

The Western Allies Need More Eyes on the World

The “Five Eyes” intelligence-sharing alliance should expand, starting with Israel and Japan. James Stavridis Bloomberg Every challenge the U.S. faces today — the rise of China, a resurgent Russia, the North Korean nuclear weapons program, Iranian adventurism throughout the Middle East, cyberthreats and… And as any intelligence expert will tell you, an accurate picture is not a sweeping oil painting, it is a mosaic. You build up that picture one small stone at a time until you can step back ... Read More »

How the European Union’s eastern expansion created Brexit and made an enemy of Russia

Fifteen years on from the EU’s enlargement, the extension arguably sabotaged more than just the quest for an ever-closer union Mary Dejevsky Independent Fifteen years ago this week, the European Union grew overnight from 15 members to 25 in the biggest and most ambitious enlargement it had ever ventured. The new members, eight of them former Soviet-bloc states, were ablaze with celebratory fireworks; there was ecstatic waving of blue and gold flags; Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” played on a seemingly eternal ... Read More »

Just making fathers take parental leave won’t solve much

Greater workplace gender balance needs broader approach Maeve McElwee The Irish Times Achieving greater gender balance and equality in the workforce has been a long-standing policy and economic priority. The proposed Parental Leave and Benefit Bill announced last week is a small step in the right direction in this regard. The measure, which would introduce two additional weeks of parental leave benefit for both parents within the first 52 weeks, seeks to begin a rebalancing of the share of responsibility ... Read More »

All you need to know about the European Parliament elections

The European Parliament vote is often considered mundane but with Brexit and rising populism, this year could surprise. Stephane Faure Al Jazeera Between May 23 and 26, millions will choose who represents them at the European Parliament (EP), the European Union‘s (EU) parliamentary institution directly elected by citizens aged 18 or… The EU is often considered an obscure and technocratic body – somewhere between a nation-state and an international organisation such as the United Nations. Many have lost faith in its… ... Read More »

Disgraced MP Fiona Onasanya loses seat after recall petition

Brexit party to field first candidate in Peterborough byelection triggered by move Rajeev Syal The Guardian Fiona Onasanya, the MP found guilty of lying to avoid a speeding ticket, has become the first parliamentarian to be removed from office after a recall petition, triggering a byelection in her Peterborough seat. Nigel Farage’s Brexit party will field its first parliamentary candidate in the seat, which voted 60-40 to leave the EU. The bellwether constituency usually swings behind the party that wins a general ... Read More »