Here SHE is! The New EU President

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    20th November, 2009

    MEET THE NEW EU PRESIDENT

    De-facto "President" Angela Merkel has secured the position she aspired to, without even standing for it. That outcome she shares with the other guy, her frontman, HVR. He too "did not seek" the job he got, whatever it was. Presumably IT sought him. It didn't seek others, who DID seek it. How odd! How peculiarly, suspiciously odd.

    In one fell swoop Ms Merkel has orchestrated the political assassination of her main rival in European politics and landed herself a new job to boot.

    Very impressive.  Some CV, Ms M!

    Tony Blair: Over qualified. The EU presidency job was (by design ... eventually) too small for this, the ONLY qualified candidate.

    WHAT? Pardon? You didn’t actually think that Van Whatsisname had won Tony’s job on merit, did you?  The Belgian who sees his job as administrating and co-ordinating rather than leading? The NOT TONY BLAIR candidate? You didn’t think ….?

    PUR…LEASE!

    This decision, a carve-up, stitch-up, *u*k-up with a consolation prize to Britain thrown in to keep us quiet, is nothing less than DISGRACEFUL.

    If this job was what it was originally meant to be – representing Europe on the world’s stage – there is and was only ONE candidate. His is the body politic left with the knives embedded in its back.

    And the fingerprints …?

    Merkel’s and Sarkozy’s. Once Blair’s friends and colleagues in Europe these two are the perpetrators of this crime.  With the collusion of others maybe, but the Franco-German alliance was the king-making duopoly in this untidy, unsatisfactory and bloody business.

    Blair’s fall in this race was NOT about Iraq, even as some try to “remind” us that it was. Twenty two of the then twenty four EU countries also supported America in Iraq, as referred to here at this blog, at Alastair Campbell’s and at Julie’s.

    It was simply, or at least mainly, that ‘Mr Flash’ was too eye-catching for Ms Merkel to compete with. The job description was only downgraded in the last day or so in order to justify the decision to exclude Blair. For no other reason.

    Merkel had the last flash, and flashed her knife deftly and with deadly accuracy in Blair’s direction.

    Presumably they think that with Rompuy and the other one “a new dawn has broken”. But after each new dawn dusk descends.

    Tonight before dinner in Brussels the dusk set upon Tony Blair’s hopes. I contest that it also set on Europe’s hopes.  In SO-O-O-O many ways.

    WHERE WERE YOU NICOLAS?

    Sarkozy has been particularly quiet as he watched this disaster unfold. Merkel too, as was to be expected, has kept her counsel throughout. But it was Merkel who moved Sarkozy from supporting Tony Blair to propping up a nondescript, unknown Belgian prime minister of one year’s experience. A pen-pusher rather than a top-seat political mover … a stapler-replenisher rather than a phone contact of the powerful.

    Quite what control Merkel has over Sarkozy we are yet to learn.

    Whatever … what EVER … are these people up to, and on OUR behalf, purportedly!?

    And on a personal level, why – if they allow themselves a moment of empathy towards OUR former Prime Minister – why has this betrayal happened yet again to this the most formidable and gifted politician of his generation?

    KEEPING BLAIR OUT OF THIS JOB IS THE WRONG – WRONG – WRONG DECISION

    Was it envy? The personal ambition of others? Lack of understanding of realpolitik? Probably all of these and much more. Whatever the reasons in public, the decision they have made tonight could not be more wrong.

    Congratulations, Europe. You have now lost a pro-Europe Brit.  I DO hope you’re pleased. More  will follow when my fellow-countrymen begin to notice how little impact Van Rompuy and the other one actually make on the world stage. And when they consider what a different Europe and world it would have been with Tony Blair as president.

    Adam Boulton on Sky News tonight put it beautifully. “Right now about 99.9% of Europeans do not know who Van Rompuy is.  By this time next year that’ll be down to … er… about 90%”.”

    Quite.


    RELATED

    Thoughts on this nonsensical decision


    Carl Bildt, the Swedish Foreign Minister warned EU leaders against missing a historic opportunity to secure Europe’s place on the world’s stage.

    Perhaps you needed to say it in German, Mr Bildt.




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    20 Responses to “Here SHE is! The New EU President”

    1. BREAKING NEWS:Blair out of EU president contest « Julie's think thank Says:

      […] BlairSupporter quoting Adam Boulton on Sky News […]

    2. Caela Says:

      Interesting. I just finished the round of leading news sources in East and Southeast Asia and most of them doesn’t even carry ANYTHING about the new “president of Europe” except notably for China Daily, Times of India and Channel News Asia who all carried generic AFP/AP news article (one in each). The leading international news in the region seems to be President Karzai’s re-election which most seem to have given a special/feature/opinion or at least a space in the “international section”.

      What is more interesting is that both Japan Times and Japan Today failed even to mention what happened in Brussels although Japan Today managed to squeeze in 2 articles each for both Karzai and Palin. In my country, no news source carried it even online. Not news enough?

      Looks like I was right: pick a nobody and the world takes one look and then roll over in boredom. Although I have discounted that there might be some who would not even spare a glance.

    3. Elaine Wiggins Says:

      Something sure smells fishy picking an unknown powerless person for a position that is to bring in the New World Order. No one has even heard of Herman Van Rompuy. I was expecting the Anti-christ, a Big Fat RAT to step up to the microphone who is prophesied in the Bible to rule the world from the Revived Roman Empire but instead only a gray mouse as some call him has been plucked up out of nowhere and purposely put at the top. The big guys did this for a reason. They have a plan. Something big is behind all of this because it just does not make any sence who they picked. If they really wanted a powerful voice and profile on the world stage for Europe’s future, they would have picked Tony Blair. Obama just loves him and recently when they met he called Tony his ‘first friend’. But they have something different up their sleeves. Stay tuned. This is going to be a different twist in events that will surprise us all and that none of us could have ever imagined. Send replys to Elaine orangesunsets1@hotmail.com

      • keeptonyblairforpm Says:

        Well, Elaine, here’s hoping you’re right. At the moment it looks, to me, more directionless than planned. I don’t know if Merkel and Sarkozy (and even Brown) would have got it together to make a PLAN to keep Tony out, for something bigger and better. I just don’t see it.

        I think he’s been kept out deliberately by those who fear his political nous and fear being outshone.

        There’s also all the European anti-Bush/America thing and anti-Iraq war nonsense still hanging about in parts of Europe. The Germans and French want to put down a marker saying “WE WON’T FOLLOW THE USA BLINDLY, AS DID BLAIR”. Even though they know that is not true, and they know that 22 out of the then 25 EU countries supported Bush in America, they are going along with public misconceptions for electoral advantage. A kind of “we get it” message. Even if they don’t agree with what they’re supposed to “get”.

        But yes, we should stay tuned. In the meantime now he’s not BIG in the EU, the Iraq Inquiry is about to heat up for Tony Blair here.

        If you haven’t yet signed the Ban Blair-baiting petition, please do (link at top of post). He’s been ‘baited’ enough recently.

    4. Stan Says:

      Very eloquently put, KTBFPM. I think this is a simple case of the egos of the Big Two (or should that be the Little Two) having priority over the good of the European Union.

      • keeptonyblairforpm Says:

        Stan, and it seems the German papers are unhappy too. There is a lot of criticism in the German press today. All say it was a bloody stupid decision.

        See here:

        It says more or less that Merkel wants a puppet that speaks for her and that TB lost Merkel’s support because of Turkey:

        Entscheidend sei doch, dass die beiden am Telefon „nichts Falsches sagen“. So gebe es bei der Erweiterung viele unterschiedliche Meinungen, und wenn da einer „auf einem anderen Kontinent“ eloquent Hoffnungen wecke, dann könne das zu Enttäuschungen führen. Übersetzung ins Undiplomatische: Einen Tony Blair, der den Türken den Beitritt verspricht, wollte sie nicht haben.

        Robin Oakley at this CNN report (is that OUR British Robin Oakley?) says the EU job was too small for Blair. He provides a good analysis.

      • Julie Says:

        B.

        I think it is the British Robin Oakley.When he’s on telly on CNN he has a strong British accent.

        • keeptonyblairforpm Says:

          Yes, Julie. He must have moved to the states. Haven’t seen him much recently if at all on terrestrial TV. And I really can’t be bothered watching much TV anyway. Too passive for me.

          Well, he’s speaking his mind and it’s clear what he thinks. I bet a few more British clued-up journos think that than are allowed to admit it.

          The link again.

    5. EU President? Meet the Candidates … Herman Van Rompuy (Belgium) « Tony Blair Says:

      […] UPDATE, 19th November: EUROPE COMMITTED COMMUNAL HARA-KIRI TONIGHT.  FEW SURVIVORS. (Will write on this when the tissues run out.) OK – here we go – “Here she is, the new EU president.” […]

    6. keeptonyblairforpm Says:

      Margaret,

      It’s certainly about power. Merkel has just been re-elected so she has no fear of losing domestic power for years yet. And Sarkozy is secure too right now at home.

      But this is a new power-base. And the new Europe does not seem so keen on spreading that power. Not as keen as we have been led to believe they would be. It is keeping power tight in a Franco-German-Brussels loop.

      The other post handed out to our woman is a sop. It signifies nothing except a compromise to keep the Left happy, Brown happy and Miliband wondering if he should have stayed in there.

      As for Blair, well, as long as they keep him off the front page, leaving room for them, WHO CARES?

      Yep, power.

    7. Rompuy directive to EU citizens: Write a Haiku poem « Tony Blair Says:

      […] Tony Blair « Here SHE is! The New EU President […]

    8. DC Says:

      Britain upon reflection should have just ducked the foreign affairs post seeing to it that Europe really is sent into foreign policy and perhaps complete oblivion post Treaty.

      I was reading that someone (within Labour) had written that the Ashton choice was “a damning indictment” of Brown; a man who appears to have “no political instincts” whatsoever. But, I suppose it is a decent thing for him to do, to let some nerdy looking toff bureaucrat take the lead and by so doing exciting the countless hundreds of chief executives working in countless hundreds of Commissions across Britain today. IF this unknown woman of nil charisma can achieve such frothy bureacratic heights then surely so must they, they must strive to be ennobled, they the chief executives and commissioners etc out there. They will be thrilled with fabulous aspirations of bigger adminhood in Euroland.

      Welll that’s my £50 quid down the drain; how could the EU be so dour and underhand in its decision-making. Merkel as ever proving she is the ever cautious lukewarm-in-political-appeal-and-tone leader. So much for Merkel and “my friend Tony”.

      German business and technology and innovative craft are an inspiration, whereas its politicians haven’t recovered their sense of purpose, drive and energy ever since those two world wars.

      Britain et al have already. Sort it out.

      • keeptonyblairforpm Says:

        Yes, DC.

        ‘Disappointing’ isn’t the word!

        Disastrous is a little closer.

        All sorts of theories going round now as to why and whom by? Even that Hoon and Mandelson were also thrown into the last-minute mix for High Commiss. or whatever this woman is called.

        It seems clear that it HAD to be someone of the LEFT. That would rule out Hoon and Mandy – too Blairite, too
        UN-LEFT.

        I also heard that at the last minute some in the EU had been pushing for BROWN to stand as President! What!? Did they want TWO British PM scalps for the price of ONE?

        German papers, interestingly are NOT happy with this decision. There was more support for Blair there than OUR papers would like us to know.

        The deed is done.

        As Tony would say, “let’s move on.”

        Easy for some to say.

    9. DC Says:

      But it’s not the person, the EU wanted a Brit at foreign affairs post so as to exploit the British link with the USA and those British army skills and experience plus the global networks from the old empire and of course the English language. But they didn’t want a personal style and opinions to go with it. Politics in terms of being effective politics requires a blend of both person and policy. Without both it will ring hollow.

      Appointing a French or Belgian or Dutch or Polish person belonging to their respective nations would have seriously if not completely undermined the EU.

      But. And I mean but – let’s wait and see.

      At the moment the EU’s perception is one that is not greater than the sum of its parts. It really isn’t with these two inexperienced and unassuming persons (unbeknownst). Thing is though, by appointing technocrats and intellectuals it proves that the EU is just one dour, technocratic regulatory android-like admin factory.

      As Blair would say weak, weak, weak.

      • keeptonyblairforpm Says:

        “Weak, weak, weak.”

        Quite.

        I think there are probably as many reasons WHY they wanted a Brit for the second post as there are countries in the EU. We Brits needed to push our weight and help Europe push above its. We’re bad at that, in our state of denial over Britain’s influence and power, and in our continual semi-disengagement with Europe, and in our press. And of course in the Tories’ completely barmy antipathy to Europe AND their nemesis.

        Doesn’t look like we’ll even push OUR weight now, much less Europe’s.

        Of course Blair might wish to try again in 2012. He’ll still be years younger than Rompuy, so who knows? By then the EU might actually WANT him for all the right reasons.

        It has always been my contention that in this media age politics is as much about presentation and the photogenic charms of people as much as anything else. Thus Labour was MAD to shift Blair.

        Rompuy and The Other One are VERY attractive, are they NOT?

    10. DC Says:

      Or should I say they wanted a British national with that person being irrelevant save for them being a British national with access the civil service system and contacts there. A British national was needed so as to exploit Britain’s longstanding diplomatic channels and experience with working across the USA and the wider-world, which Germany clearly lacks and France has in a lesser proportion.

      The person was irrelevant, which is why I mean if Brown had stood firm and pull the British national option away from the foreign affairs post altogether Europe would have been written into irrelevance. It would have had little experience and no relevant networks by which to prove its worth and also to capture the attention of political elites across EU and beyond.

      • keeptonyblairforpm Says:

        That might have been the thing to do, in fact – to withdraw. But even if Blair had urged it as a “call their bluff” tactic, and even if Brown had considered it, there would have been too many others crying “foul”. For instance, Hoon and Mandelson, who it seems, also had their names put forward for the High Commissioner post.

        I must admit I was expecting it to go to at least today, possibly even longer.

        It was clearly a stitch-up of both Blair and Brown, and Brown may have fallen for it, or allowed Blair to be rejected rather than risk being blamed for causing the EU to go up in flames.

        As we have noted before, his political nous doesn’t compare to that of his predecessor.

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