United Kingdom

Brexit talk is pushing the City of London closer to Frankfurt

My five years as a PhD student, first in Oxford (Brookes) and then as a post-doc at LSE, have told me that the smart people from the UK, especially those working in the City, see the Euro project thus: European Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) is like a ship [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Why people join ISIS

Why do young European-Arab Muslims, and converts, go to join the Islamic State (ISIS or Daesh) to fight or sacrifice themselves, in Syria, Iraq and Libya, among other places, and, when they return, in Europe itself? It is essential to find out. The explanation frequently comes more from anthropology [...]

The euro: an orphan who no longer needs his parents?

When my colleague Erik Jones told me that Martin Sandbu’s Europe’s Orphan: the Future of the Euro and the Politics of Debt was the best book on the Eurozone crisis, I was sceptical. Usually the analysis that comes from the Anglo-Saxon world does not grasp the complex sociology and [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Brexit: possible political disasters

It is commonplace to talk more about the economic impact, but a British exit from the EU (so-called Brexit) could lead to a variety of political disasters. First, Ireland This would be the country most affected by Brexit, due to the impact it could have on the Ulster peace [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega European prose for David Cameron: not much changes

David Cameron emerged with his spoils. But also to some extent did we. He secured a special status in the EU. But he already had that, and things have scarcely changed. In the final analysis, like Monsieur Jourdain, he has done nothing but talk in European prose, although the [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega Cameron and Europe: much ado about a few things

David Cameron will have to summon all his capacity for patience, as will his colleagues in the EU too. Feelings running high in the fight against the terrorism of the Islamic State (IS) and in the refugee crisis, together with Cameron’s own tardiness in submitting his proposals will make [...]

Global Spectator, by Andrés Ortega The Paris attacks: another lost opportunity for European defence

Listening to La Marseillaise sung by spectators at Wembley Stadium during the England-France match was a moving experience. The Defence Ministers of the 28 meeting for the first time to unanimously activate Article 42.7 of the Treaty of the EU, appertaining to mutual assistance, was a milestone, although in [...]

On power, presence, heavy and lightweights

Recently, Portland Communications has launched Soft Power 30, an index aiming at classifying countries according to their capacity to ‘softly’ influence others.  By means of “positive attraction and persuasion”, a country may exert soft power through a variety of channels such as engagement (diplomatic network, commitment to global development), [...]

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