Andrés Ortega is Senior Research Fellow at the Elcano Royal Institute. He is also an independent consultant and director of the Observatorio de las Ideas. He tweets under @andresortegak.
By Andrés Ortega
Despite the official congratulations, Europe’s conservative-dominated collective leadership would have rather seen Labour’s Ed Miliband entering 10 Downing Street. This might seem a paradox, but it is not. There is little confidence in David Cameron. First he got Scotland into an independence referendum that made much of Europe very jittery. Europe’s leaders will again feel a shudder down their spines once the British referendum (Brexit) on leaving the EU comes up. Although Scottish nationalists only just lost their referendum, thanks to devolution promises Cameron now has to honour, the effect has been a totally SNP-dominated political landscape in Scotland. In last Thursday’s general election the party swept the board, taking 56 of a total of 59 seats, compared with only six in 2010.
Jean-Claude Juncker can sometimes be very daring. But words count, and should be used with precision. Speaking to a German newspaper, the President of the European Commission has called for a ‘European army’ to help cope with the challenge posed by Russia, to defend European ‘values’ and for the EU to take up its ‘responsibility in the world’ and be able ‘to react to a threat to peace in a Member State or neighbour’. He even said that ‘it would have been useful during the crisis in Ukraine’. But how?