Chris Gilson takes a look at the week in Brussels blogging.

The EU Centre

Commissioner Georgieva’s blog says that the activation EU’s Civil Protection mechanism by Greece for help to fight forest fires is sending that country a clear message that the EU stands by it.

Coulisses de Bruxelles looks at Germany’s efforts to create a federal Europe and France’s tendency to resist. Public Affairs 2.0 looks at Brussels jargon, and tries to find a life beyond it.

Credit: Éole Wind (Creative Commons BY NC SA)

Cyprus will soon hold the Presidency of the European Union. Europeanization at BlogActiv.eu looks at the health priorities of the Presidency, including conferences on ageing, child poverty, and cross-border health. Meanwhile Euro-Sante examines the health implications of the Eurozone crisis which include patients paying more, fewer medical supplies and less innovation in medicines.

EU Logos at BlogActiv.eu is very happy that the ACTA anti-counterfeiting treaty, has now been rejected by four of the European Parliament’s committees. On her blog MEP Sandrine Belier says that support for the anti-ACTA petition (which has gained 3 million signatures) is a new milestone in the opposition to the Treaty. PolsciEU says that ACTA’s defeat later in the week by the International Trade Committee in the European Parliament is a sign that the power of European democracy lies in social, not just social media.

EU Foreign policy and the European neighbourhood

The European Council on Foreign Relations says that the EU must not accept the ‘coup’ by Egypt’s ruling military council in the country’s first post-Mubarak election.

On her blog this week, EU Commissioner Cecilia Malmström announced over 40 initiatives aimed at combatting human trafficking, while the Fride Blog says that the EU should discontinue its Human Rights Dialogues with non-EU countries, as they often do nothing to help the human rights situations in those countries. At BlogActiv.eu, Europe of Human Rights wonders how long the EU will be able to continue without a human rights strategy.

At BlogActiv.eu Matiyeshyn on Europe looks at the difficulties in realising natural gas infrastructure projects in the Ukraine. These are important for Ukraine to reduce its dependency on Russian natural gas.

The Euro Crisis

Fistful of Euros has a forensic analysis of Spain’s economic woes, and finds that part of the responsibility for the situation rests with the ECB. Spain’s recovery will be a long process, he writes.

Coulisses de Bruxelles examines the new French Covenant for Growth which outlines plans for greater fiscal and political union in Europe over the next decade. Lost in Europe says that Europe sits in the dock at the G20 summit in Mexico this week, and that there are no quick fixes to the crisis. Meanwhile, ahead of the EU summit next week, Nucleus at BlogActiv.eu says that Europe is looking for some leadership from German Chancellor Angela Merkel. The Honey Ball Buzz says that a banking union in Europe could challenge the prominence of the City of London, and the FT’s Brussels Blog looks at the possibility that the new €500 billion European Stability Mechanism might be used to purchase Spain and Italy’s sovereign bonds.

After the election in Greece on Sunday, Lost in Europe worries that we may be experiencing a new ‘Lehman moment’ and that the Euro’s troubles have now become acute. Meanwhile Martinned wonders if Germany is willing to sacrifice the Eurozone periphery countries rather than European democracy. Nucleus at BlogActiv.eu is concerned that the Greek elections have only postponed the crisis, as even though a coalition government is being formed, Greece still faces enormous problems. Greek EurActiv says that after the election, Greece needs more Europe – and that while Greece cannot count on indefinite EU assistance, it should also try to build closer links with European policy-making. The OFCE blog goes against the current negativity by saying that the Eurozone would actually be able to absorb the shock of a Greek Euro exit and debt default.

On Friday the Fride Blog looks at the symbolism of the Greece/Germany European Football Championship match that evening, saying that “tonight’s match will reveal how the economic and political disputes between the two opponents will echo onto a sensational and confrontationally-played showdown.”

Across Europe

Croatia, the war and the Future wonders how the country’s difficulties in narrowing its budget deficits will affect its coming entry to the Eurozone. Martinned is downbeat about the possibility of Albania, Macedonia, Kosovo and Montenegro forming a ‘Benelux of the West Balkans’, saying that the likelihood of any of the countries joining the EU any time soon was remote.

In the lead up to Greece’s second election in as many months, The New Federalist looks at two possible scenarios for coalition governments after the vote.

Corina Cretu, looks at the rivalry between Romanian Prime Minister Victor Ponta and the President Traian Basescu. Ponta has recently denied claims that he plagiarised large sections of his doctoral thesis.

And finally…

What has Herman been up to? Apart from being happy with the Greek people’s election choice, this week was in Mexico for an EU-Mexico summit, and for the G20. On Tuesday he says that Europe will have an economic union by the end of the year.

German Joys compares the merits of the German and US justice systems.

According to PolsciEU the European Parliament asked the European Commission over 12,000 questions last year – double the number in 2007.

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Note:  This article gives the views of the author, and not the position of EUROPP – European Politics and Policy, nor of the London School of Economics.

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