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European Union, The (EU)

Self Description

July 2002: "The European Union (EU) was set up after the 2nd World War. The process of European integration was launched on 9 May 1950 when France officially proposed to create 'the first concrete foundation of a European federation'. Six countries (Belgium, Germany, France, Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands) joined from the very beginning. Today, after four waves of accessions (1973: Denmark, Ireland and the United Kingdom; 1981: Greece; 1986: Spain and Portugal; 1995: Austria, Finland and Sweden) the EU has 15 Member States and is preparing for the accession of 13 eastern and southern European countries."

Third-Party Descriptions

July 2016: "As the vote approached, pro-Brexit newspapers — including The Sun, The Daily Mail, The Express and The Telegraph — wrote stories that exaggerated how many immigrants were coming to Britain because of its E.U. membership and their effects on social services, reported that Queen Elizabeth II was secretly pro-Brexit, and quoted claims from pro-Leave politicians that Britain was sending 350 million pounds ($464 million) a week to the European Union that could be used instead to shore up the National Health Service."

May 2014: 'What is clear is that with his re-election, Orbán has consolidated a well-orchestrated constitutional coup that has rattled the European Union’s complacency about being a club of well-behaved democracies. Since 2010, Fidesz has rewritten the Constitution without engaging any opposition parties and has granted overwhelming and unchecked power to its party leader, who in turn wasted little time in wresting control of every state institution from opposition hands, entrenching his political allies everywhere, bringing the judiciary to heel and radically centralizing political authority. The Fidesz constitutional “reform” has spawned a Frankenstate, a form of government created by stitching together perfectly normal rules from the laws of various EU members into a monstrous new whole. The component pieces of the Hungarian Frankenstate might have operated perfectly well in their original contexts, but combined in a new constitutional system, these once-normal rules produce abnormal results. As government spokespeople have said every time there is criticism of a particular aspect of the new constitutional order: that rule exists in Greece. Or Germany. Or the United Kingdom. It’s normal. End of story. But nowhere do all those rules exist together, except in the Hungarian Frankenstate.'

February 2013: "Mr. Yaacoub’s testimony offered unaccustomed insights from an active Hezbollah member into the militant group’s secret operations. But it carried potentially greater significance for the European Union, which has thus far resisted following Washington’s lead in declaring the group a terrorist organization. Experts say that a conviction here would substantially raise the pressure on the bloc for such a designation."

November 2011: "On the surface, Greece and Italy seem remarkably alike. Both countries have entrenched patronage networks that predate the European Union by centuries and suffocating regulations and work rules. And both Mr. Papademos, 64, and Mr. Monti, 68, the president of Bocconi University in Milan, have close ties to European Union officials, who are taking a strong hand in managing the affairs of both countries because the fate of the euro hangs in the balance."

June 2011: 'The European Union, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund, known as the “troika,” say that is the only way out for a heavily indebted Greece, while some economists say the program resembles medieval bloodletting — a dose of pain highly unlikely to revive the patient.'

February 2011: "A French company, 1plusV, which owns, one of three European companies that have already filed charges against Google, said it sent a supplementary complaint to the European Commission, the executive arm of the European Union."

May 2010: "BRUSSELS — The European Union fined a group of computer chip makers 331.3 million euros ($409 million) on Wednesday for price fixing in the first use of a new procedure that allows settlement of cartel cases in Europe."

May 2010: 'Lebanon has been seeking approval from the European Union to register hummus as a national dish. "What we have been trying to do is just what the Greeks have done with feta cheese," said Fadi Abboud, president of The Association of Lebanese Industrialists, in January.'

April 2010: "The details of the plan have been settled in negotiations here with officials of the European Union, the I.M.F. and the European Central Bank. Greek officials close to the discussions said the deal would include as much as 130 billion euros in aid over the next three years at reasonable interest rates. In return, the I.M.F. asked Greece to cut public sector spending by 8 billion euros in the 14 months after the plan was adopted. Economists called that provision crucial because past reform programs by the government have relied too much on overly optimistic assumptions about the collection of unpaid taxes."

April 2010: 'The reactions to the resolution, however, have been shockingly churlish and cynical. Some, especially but not only Bosnian Muslims, have complained that the resolution was worthless because it talks only of a “crime” and a “tragedy,” not a “genocide.” Others say Serbia’s government pushed this resolution through merely to curry favor with the European Union, which it desperately wants to join.'

July 2009: "It is also a beneficiary of €1.59 million in farm subsidies from the European Union, which last year doled out more than €50 billion, $71 billion, from the largest agricultural aid program in the world, one that provides financing to a wide variety of recipients beyond the farmers who plow the soil — German gummy bear manufacturers, luxury cruise ship caterers and wealthy landowners ranging from Queen Elizabeth II of England to Prince Albert II of Monaco."

June 3009: 'The EU filed a similar complaint the same day. In a statement, EU Trade Commissioner Catherine Ashton said, "The Chinese restrictions on raw materials distort competition and increase global prices, making things even more difficult for our companies in this economic downturn."'

June 2009: 'This August, U.S. airlines face their first big deadline to meet European Union rules on emissions linked to global warming. That's when carriers landing in Europe will have to submit proposals to the EU on how they plan to track such emissions. This is a first step toward tough European "cap-and-trade" laws requiring airlines to either slash greenhouse gases or pay for permits to emit, starting in 2012. U.S. airlines are watching these developments anxiously, in part because they are already struggling with weak travel demand and yo-yo'ing fuel prices.'

November 2008: "That would seem to argue for swift action to stop the pirates, and Germany did indeed draw international attention earlier this week when it announced that up to 1,400 military personnel members might take part in the mission to combat piracy. But the figure significantly overstated the likely deployment as part of a European Union mission in the region, and Parliament has yet to approve it. It also remains to be seen whether the rules of engagement give German sailors a free enough hand to fight the pirates."

August 2008: "NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer said Tuesday that Russian forces were still inside Georgia, despite a European Union-brokered cease-fire agreement to withdraw -- and despite Moscow's saying it had begun pulling out Monday."

July 2008: "EU home affairs ministers are gathering in Brussels to discuss a number of proposals on immigration, attempting to set a common approach across member states."

June 2008: "The new laws in the European Union require companies to demonstrate that a chemical is safe before it enters commerce -- the opposite of policies in the United States, where regulators must prove that a chemical is harmful before it can be restricted or removed from the market. Manufacturers say that complying with the European laws will add billions to their costs, possibly driving up prices of some products."

June 2008: 'A statement from the United States and the 27-nation European Union said Iran must undertake a "full and verifiable" suspension of its uranium enrichment program and disclose any prior weapons-related work to the International Atomic Energy Agency. Although it is suspected that Iran halted work on nuclear weapons several years ago, the inability of the IAEA to inspect its operations has left doubts about Tehran's intentions as it continues to expand and improve its uranium enrichment. Enriched uranium can be used for both nuclear energy and weapons.'

January 2008: "European Union officials insist that their bloc, which has negotiated fishing deals with Africa since 1979, is a scapegoat for Africa’s management failures and the misdeeds of other foreign fleets. They argue that African officials oversell fishing rights, inflate potential catches and allow pirate vessels and local boats free rein in breeding grounds."

November 2007: "The European Union, China’s biggest trading partner, accuses Beijing of holding the yuan at an artificially low level to assist Chinese exporters, contributing to the trade imbalance. China’s surplus is forecast to widen 30 percent this year, to 170 billion euros, ($252 billion)."

November 2007: "European Union environmental officials have determined that two kinds of genetically modified corn could harm butterflies, affect food chains and disturb life in rivers and streams, and they have proposed a ban on the sale of the seeds, which are made by DuPont Pioneer, Dow Agrosciences and Syngenta."

November 2007: In the report, which is expected to be read closely by European Union officials who are assessing Serbia’s readiness to join the 27-member bloc, researchers concluded that “filthy conditions, contagious diseases, lack of medical care and rehabilitation and a failure to provide oversight renders placement in a Serbian institution life-threatening.” European Union officials said that such reports would be a basis for their assessments of a country’s record in upholding human rights, and of its readiness to enter the union.

October 2007: Across Switzerland, anti-foreigner and anti-Islamic attitudes have become so pervasive on the streets, in politics and within governmental institutions that the United Nations, European Union, Amnesty International and Switzerland's own Federal Commission Against Racism have expressed alarm in recent months.

August 2007: Greece has one of the worst records in the European Union on environmental issues, and on forest protection in particular. Environmental groups say recycling is in its infancy, development is largely unregulated, and protected areas neglected.

April 2007: The European Union’s election observer mission said it had serious concerns about the state elections, urging that in some states election officials should “undertake a comprehensive investigation and give serious consideration to re-running the process.” A coalition of Nigerian community organizations said that in 10 states the results were so flawed that they “cannot be said to have reflected the will of the people,” Reuters reported.

January 2007: With a newly empowered Germany at the helm, the European Union is making surprising strides toward expanding legal immigration into the bloc as a whole for the first time.

October 2006: The United States and the European Union failed to meet a Saturday deadline to conclude a permanent new agreement on the sharing of airline passenger data, an issue that has raised serious privacy concerns in Europe. But both sides said talks will continue and flights will not be affected.

March 2006: As the hoped-for entry draws near, Romania's experience illustrates how expansion of the European Union is changing not just the union but the states that join. Like eight other East European nations that entered in 2004, Romania is busy erasing the legacy of half a century of communism and trying to build institutions that bear the stamp of approval of E.U. headquarters in Brussels.

February 2006: The argument was outlined in a document Microsoft delivered confidentially to European Union antitrust authorities Feb. 15. The company made its response public Thursday amid its intensifying antitrust problems in Europe. E.U. antitrust authorities have 'moved the goal posts on us but have deliberately refused to articulate' what will satisfy them, said Horacio Gutierrez, Microsoft's general counsel for Europe.

July 2005: Since then, the court's decision has been awaited as an important test not just of the European warrant but of the larger principle that once the European Union has enacted a law and a member has ratified it, the European law takes priority over national laws, whether in the realm of criminal procedure or agricultural subsidies.

October 2004: NKARA, Turkey, Oct. 2 - Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has staked his political reputation on leading Turkey into the European Union, said Saturday that Turkey would not accept any affiliation with the union that falls short of full membership.


RoleNameTypeLast Updated
Owner of (partial or full, past or present) ANEC Organization Apr 29, 2010
Owner of (partial or full, past or present) European Commission Organization Oct 14, 2007
Owner of (partial or full, past or present) European Court of Justice (CURIA) Organization Oct 1, 2006
Owner of (partial or full, past or present) European Parliament Organization Oct 19, 2006
Owner of (partial or full, past or present) Europol Organization Feb 4, 2013
Financial Supporter of (past or present) Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) Organization May 17, 2010
Organization Executive (past or present) Jacques Barrot Person Jun 21, 2008
Cooperation (past or present) Prime Minister David Cameron Person Jul 4, 2016
Opponent (past or present) Nigel Farage Person Jul 4, 2016
Opponent (past or present) Mayor Boris Johnson Person Jul 4, 2016
Organization Executive (past or present) Christine Lagarde Esq. Person Jun 1, 2014
Organization Head/Leader (past or present) Per Stig Moller Person
Advised by (past or present) Dr. John Edwin Mroz Ph.D. Person Feb 7, 2012
Organization Head/Leader (past or present) Herman Van Rompuy Person Oct 27, 2011
Organization Head/Leader (past or present) Jose Socrates Person Nov 21, 2007
Organization Executive (past or present) Javier Solana Person Sep 24, 2005

Articles and Resources

155 Articles and Resources. Go to:  [Next 20]   [End]

Date Resource Read it at:
Jul 03, 2016 Fair Play in a Fact-Challenged Political Landscape (Mediator)

QUOTE: Mr. Lewandowski’s hiring represents a signal moment in political journalism’s evolving embrace of political operatives: A major mainstream news organization is using a commentator who is legally prohibited from sharing the unvarnished truth on the subject — Mr. Trump — he was hired to talk about.

New York Times
May 06, 2014 Hungary and the End of Politics How Victor Orbán launched a constitutional coup and created a one-party state.

QUOTE: What is clear is that with his re-election, Orbán has consolidated a well-orchestrated constitutional coup that has rattled the European Union’s complacency about being a club of well-behaved democracies. Since 2010, Fidesz has rewritten the Constitution without engaging any opposition parties and has granted overwhelming and unchecked power to its party leader, who in turn wasted little time in wresting control of every state institution from opposition hands, entrenching his political allies everywhere, bringing the judiciary to heel and radically centralizing political authority. The Fidesz constitutional “reform” has spawned a Frankenstate, a form of government created by stitching together perfectly normal rules from the laws of various EU members into a monstrous new whole.

Jul 08, 2013 Spaniards Fight to Get Savings Back

QUOTE: ...300,000 Spaniards who, in the midst of a brutal recession, have seen their life savings virtually wiped out in what critics call a deceptive and possibly fraudulent sales campaign by banks that were threatened by the implosion of Spain’s property market....were easily misled when bank officials hit on the idea of raising capital and cleaning debts off their books by getting people with savings accounts to invest in their banks instead.

New York Times
Feb 20, 2013 Trial Offers Rare Look at Work of Hezbollah in Europe

QUOTE: less than two weeks after he was taken into custody, a bomb blew up alongside a bus at the airport in Burgas, Bulgaria, killing five Israeli tourists and the Bulgarian driver — an attack similar to the one he seemed to be planning, experts say, and one that the Bulgarian authorities later tied to Hezbollah.....significance for the European Union, which has thus far resisted following Washington’s lead in declaring the group a terrorist organization.

New York Times
May 23, 2012 Law of the Sea Treaty Is Found on Capitol Hill, Again

QUOTE: Thirty years after it was signed in Montego Bay, Jamaica, the United Nations treaty that governs the world’s oceans is undergoing one of its periodic resurrections in Congress... The Senate has never ratified the treaty...its opponents — a handful of conservative Republicans who view it as an infringement on American sovereignty...

New York Times
Dec 27, 2011 Security forces fire on protesters in Homs, witnesses say

QUOTE: The Arab League fact-finding team is visiting Syria this week to assess whether the government is upholding a commitment to end a brutal crackdown on anti-government protesters, now in its 10th month. The observers are monitoring an Arab League initiative that calls for President Bashar al-Assad's security forces to withdraw from cities, release detainees and end all forms of violence.

CNN (Cable News Network)
Nov 10, 2011 Greece and Italy Seek a Solution From Technocrats

QUOTE: The question now, in both Italy and Greece, is whether the technocrats can succeed where elected leaders failed — whether pressure from the European Union backed by the whip of the financial markets will be enough to dislodge the entrenched cultures of political patronage that experts largely blame for the slow growth and financial crises that plague both countries.

New York Times
Jun 22, 2011 Some Greeks Fear Government Is Selling Nation

QUOTE: “But at these extremely low levels, especially for those companies quoted on the stock exchange, we have to be very wary,” he added. “If we go by today’s values, as a result of the recession and the crisis the country finds itself in, it will be really selling the crown jewels at a pittance of their cost.” Mr. Papandreou’s government has not managed to make a convincing case for the sell-off to many Greeks, where the idea of a fire sale has taken hold, setting off a wave of national indignation.

New York Times
Apr 12, 2011 Portugal's Unnecessary Bailout

QUOTE: (Portugal) has come under unfair and arbitrary pressure from bond traders, speculators and credit rating analysts who, for short-sighted or ideological reasons, have now managed to drive out one democratically elected administration and potentially tie the hands of the next one.

New York Times
Apr 02, 2011 Author of Israel-Hamas report: Would reconsider findings

QUOTE: The chairman of a U.N. commission whose report accused Israel of "actions amounting to war crimes" against Hamas says he would have reached different conclusions if the Israeli military had been more forthcoming and if he had known the results of subsequent investigations. "If I had known then what I know now, the Goldstone Report would have been a different document," wrote Richard Goldstone, a former South African jurist, in a Washington Post op-ed column Friday.

CNN (Cable News Network)
Mar 31, 2011 Antitrust Cry From Microsoft

QUOTE: The litany of particulars in Microsoft’s complaint… includes claims of anticompetitive practices by Google in search, online advertising and smartphone software. But a central theme, Microsoft says, is that Google unfairly hinders the ability of search competitors — and Microsoft’s Bing is almost the only one left — from examining and indexing information that Google controls, like its big video service YouTube.

New York Times
Mar 30, 2011 Fleeing North Africa and Landing in an Italian Limbo

QUOTE: The Italian foreign minister, Franco Frattini, criticized France for its “lack of solidarity” after it returned more than 500 immigrants to Italy after they were caught trying to cross the border into France... (The Northern League)... has long drawn on fears of illegal immigration. Asked... what should be done about the immigrants... Umberto Bossi, used a phrase that politely translates as “get them out of our faces.”

New York Times
Mar 24, 2011 Some Weigh Restructuring Portugal’s Debt

QUOTE: “When you reduce the incomes of the people who service the debt but you don’t reduce the incomes of the bondholders, you won’t reduce the level of debt,” (Barry Eichengreen) said. “Some might call it shared sacrifice, but some people are not sharing...” “The banks are obviously putting pressure on Europe to not restructure,” said Raoul Ruparel, an analyst at Open Europe, a Europe-focused research organization based in London. “But there is no real reason to impose such a cost on taxpayers when investors and banks have the ability to absorb these costs.”

New York Times
Mar 15, 2011 Uzbekistan Expels Human Rights Watch’s Staff

QUOTE: Human Rights Watch announced on Tuesday that the government of Uzbekistan had decided to expel its employees from the country, a move the group said indicated a “deepening human rights crisis” in the authoritarian former Soviet republic.

New York Times
Mar 09, 2011 Revolts Raise Fear of Migration in Europe

QUOTE: Morocco, Tunisia and particularly Libya sometimes used brutal tactics to keep immigrants from ever getting near European shores... In a report published in 2009, Human Rights Watch said that migrants who eventually made it to Malta and Italy described being beaten and robbed of valuables and their documents while in detention in Libya.

New York Times
Feb 22, 2011 Google Faces New Antitrust Charges in Europe

QUOTE: Google faced new accusations on Tuesday that it was blocking a smaller European search service by restricting the use of its powerful system for attracting advertisers.

New York Times
Jul 21, 2010 The Web Means the End of Forgetting

QUOTE: So much of what we say, and of what others say about us, goes into our permanent — and public — digital files. The fact that the Internet never seems to forget is threatening, at an almost existential level, our ability to control our identities; to preserve the option of reinventing ourselves and starting anew; to overcome our checkered pasts.

New York Times
May 19, 2010 An Old Chip Cartel Case Is Brought to a Swift End

QUOTE: The European Union fined a group of computer chip makers 331.3 million euros ($409 million) on Wednesday for price fixing in the first use of a new procedure that allows settlement of cartel cases in Europe.

New York Times
May 09, 2010 Lebanon claims latest title in 'Hummus War'

QUOTE: Yet, in spite of their shared appreciation, the origin of [hummus] is a source of heated debate with the Lebanese claiming ownership and Israelis denying that they have exclusive rights to the name.

CNN (Cable News Network)
Apr 30, 2010 Chinese Rules Said to Threaten Proprietary Information

QUOTE: China is expected to issue regulations on Saturday requiring technology companies to disclose proprietary information like data-encryption keys and underlying software code to sell a range of security-related digital technology products to government agencies...

New York Times

155 Articles and Resources. Go to:  [Next 20]   [End]