Geopolitics and conscious uncoupling – up to a point

by Rashmee

Posted on September 18, 2020


‘Conscious uncoupling’ became famous – both as a term and a concept – in 2014, when actress Gywneth Paltrow and singer Chris Martin were in the throes of a divorce. But the neologism was coined much before, and not by Ms Paltrow. In fact, it was California marriage and family therapist Katherine Woodward Thomas who … Continue reading “Geopolitics and conscious uncoupling – up to a point”

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France and Italy are food and beverage superpowers

by Rashmee

Posted on September 15, 2020


There’s no question that Europe’s food and beverage superpowers are France and Italy. Half of the products on the 100-strong list of unique European products that China agreed to protect  (on Monday, September 14) come from France and Italy. The list has 200 products altogether – equal numbers from China and the European Union (EU). … Continue reading “France and Italy are food and beverage superpowers”

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More European Union? The ‘frugal four’ are pushing back against Franco-German largesse

by Rashmee

Posted on May 21, 2020


Some say there’s “18% more union”. That’s what Bloomberg opined anyway. It said that the decision by Germany’s Angela Merkel to join France’s Emmanuel Macron in backing a 500-billion euro European Commission lending facility is a very big deal. It doesn’t mean there will be a United States of Europe any time soon, but the fiscal union … Continue reading “More European Union? The ‘frugal four’ are pushing back against Franco-German largesse”

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Europe won’t admit that ‘ever closer union’ means the California-Mississippi issue

by Rashmee

Posted on April 8, 2020


Europe has a big problem. It doesn’t want to acknowledge that “ever closer union” requires real togetherness, the kind that binds California and Mississippi. California contributes the most federal tax revenue and Mississippi is one of the most federally dependent states in America. And yet, they have equal representation in the US Senate and equal … Continue reading “Europe won’t admit that ‘ever closer union’ means the California-Mississippi issue”

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Coronavirus or not, Europe uses Albania to show it’s business as usual

by Rashmee

Posted on March 25, 2020


The European Union (EU) is trying business as usual, pandemic or not, and it’s using a hot-button issue – accession talks for Albania and North Macedonia – to do so. On Tuesday (March 24), EU foreign and Europe ministers discussed (by videoconference)  a proposal to open talks with the two Balkan countries. It was an … Continue reading “Coronavirus or not, Europe uses Albania to show it’s business as usual”

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Friday, the 13th: It’s taken a virus to show up European disunion

by Rashmee

Posted on March 13, 2020


Italy asked Germany to send face masks and testing kits. It was China that answered the call. (Beijing sent medical experts and promised the cheap and speedy provision of 2 million face masks, 20,000 protective suits and 1,000 respirators.) Members of the European Union (EU) have been violating their own rules. For instance, the cherished … Continue reading “Friday, the 13th: It’s taken a virus to show up European disunion”

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Amid preparations for Nato’s 70th anniversary summit, no one seems sure about where Europe should be heading

by Rashmee

Posted on November 26, 2019 / The National


Tomorrow, European officials will vote to confirm the new European Commission. If all goes well, the executive arm of the European bloc will begin its five-year term by the end of the week, just a few days before Nato’s 70th anniversary summit in London. The sequence of events throws into relief three key policy challenges … Continue reading “Amid preparations for Nato’s 70th anniversary summit, no one seems sure about where Europe should be heading”

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Europe does battle again with the demons of migration

by Rashmee

Posted on October 6, 2019 / The Arab Weekly


Direct investment in countries that produce the most migrants is a strategically smart idea. A new migration plan soon goes before EU ministers. It’s already been agreed to in principle by Finland, France, Germany, Italy and Malta, all of which said they would automatically accept an equitable share of migrants rescued at sea. German Interior … Continue reading “Europe does battle again with the demons of migration”

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Europe just got less predictable

by Rashmee

Posted on May 31, 2019 / First Post


The Centre-right and centre-left took a beating in the EU elections. What else is in store? Europe has voted for its shared 751-seat parliament and contrary to the hype, there was no European revolution. The far-right did not take charge. Euroscepticism did not triumph. In fact, voter turnout surged to a 20-year high and the 28-country … Continue reading “Europe just got less predictable”

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A legitimating moment for European bigotry?

by Rashmee

Posted on May 19, 2019 / The Arab Weekly


Opinion polls indicate a surge in support for the far right ahead of the elections, which could make it the second largest force in the European Parliament with up to 35% of all seats. The legitimating moment for European bigotry occurred when Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban was received by US President Donald Trump at … Continue reading “A legitimating moment for European bigotry?”

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Rashmee has lived and worked in several countries in the past decade, including Afghanistan, India, Haiti, Tunisia, the UAE, US and UK