Wednesday, February 23, 2011




"Do you remember those not so distant times when the EU had the figure of Mr. CFSP? The High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy post fell to the Spaniard Javier Solana, with an active political agenda he had to solve devilish problems from dusk 'til dawn. His frenetic pace of travel and his effort made towards everyone, made him a regular and prominent player in the international media, the leading voice of Europe at any place where there was a situation worthy of being reviewed and commented.

Interviewing Solana became a forecasting exercise that required to close the meeting with many weeks in advance at the number of commitments to be met, and the many meetings he had with leaders around the world made him appear on the screen almost more than CNN Larry King himself.

A voice that had it
There were times when the EU's voice was heard, and also at times, when needed, which became a noted prominently in the international political scene. After a long period, and after the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon, Solana left office, he returned to Spain and his place was taken by Catherine Ashton, who in the period that has carried out his duties might well have won a prize of inactivity, given what you are missing any conflict scenario.

Late and wrong
After the events in Egypt and the change experienced in the country by the power of citizens, Solana's successor has taken it in stride and it took no less than two weeks to appear in Cairo. Must be a High Representative who understands that the rush is not good and avoids, therefore, succumb to any kind of stress in the course of their languid functions.

Inexplicable timidity
This indolence manifested joins, if anything is missing, the irritating timidity of the foreign ministers of the European Union, which seem to lag behind the events and react with a maddening slowness before the wave of change that is occurring in Islamic world. Is not to irritate, absence of speech or mere negligence, the truth and the truth is that Europe's voice is heard less and less power and therefore with a low weight that it becomes irrelevant in the world. Over and over again is the U.S. Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, who takes the initiative and goes beyond the rhetoric that seems to dominate timid old Europe.

Fear Gaddafi
One thing is not wanting to embarrass Gaddafi, in avoidance of a dangerous escalation of illegal immigration to Italy-Libya position would be questionable, and other inane issue a statement in which he was not quoted by name, nor to his army. Limited to seeking restraint when what is being perpetrated is an attack on the civilian population in blood and fire, is so pathetic and ridiculous. Given the massive crime can expect a strong and unequivocal position in Europe, and not the application of hot packs to leave the EU in a position irrelevant, and worse, unnecessary.

Ashton does not work
The Heads of State and Government of 27 are forced to rethink the role of the Union in the international arena and the work of Catherine Ashton in front of your normal diplomacy. The lack of British leadership is obvious and its limited application to the assigned task. Her substitution ('relevo') before her glaring incompetence becomes even more obvious could mean a significant repulsion and revitalization of the EU in a crucial area where this is missing, and put back in his area the one with much drive, dedication and desire, the today so much missed Javier Solana Madariaga."

Antonio San José is a journalist and political analyst

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