In less than a month European citizens of the 28 EU member states will be called to vote for their local Members of the European Parliament ( MEPs ).
The elections are as important as ever especially taking into account foreign policy issues which in my humble view have not been solved adequately by the EU such as Iran´s nuclear threat or Russia´s new imperialism with Ucraine. But regrettably in many countries and for different reasons the elections will be distorted without having a global strategy on what to do in different policies. Thus, on the one hand,in the so-called PIGS countries ( Portugal, Ireland, Greece and Spain ), a necessary economic austerity after years of happy money spending and corruption is being contested mainly by the left. On the other hand, the electorate of Central European countries plus France is contesting what they argue is a soft approach to crime and an open door policies on immigration especially from Moslem countries.
To add to more problems on the already intricated balance of interests, the UK electorate is worried that the EU legislation, which accounts for 80 % of national legislation in EU countries, is invading their sovereingnty. Hence the surge in popularity of UKIP, a mainly conservative party which also picks up discontents from both the Labour and Liberal Democrat parties.
So in this maze of federated countries with diverging and sometimes opposed interests, which have to be reconciled at two levels, the Parliament and the Commission, what are the choices left to us humble citizens ?. Depending on the country you live in and the issues important to you either as a Jew or as a voter, the choices are pretty limited to the two big influential options:
- The more socially-oriented Party of European Socialists – who espouse a two state solution to the present negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority- and also want less austerity and more public spending. Their main party is the German SPD.
- The more free market oriented but firm supporter of Israel, the European People´s Party which advocates economic thrift. The core party of this group is again the German CDU, Angela Merkel´s party.
With the exception of the Liberals ( ALDE group ) and the AECR ( promoted by the British Conservative Party ) the rest of parties are based on extreme platforms such as the European Left ( communists, ecologists, republicans and feminists ) and Europe for Freedom ( far right parties ).
In my next post I will analyse some of the mainpolitical blocks policies and what I deem the EU needs as a political and socioeconomic strategy.