Old Continent

La strana ascesa della BCE nella politica europea: un'anomalia necessaria

Non è ancora chiaro se il 2015 sarà per l'Europa l'anno della sospirata ripresa – benché lo stesso termine "ripresa" sia probabilmente inadatto per descrivere uno scenario tanto mutato dall'inizio della crisi...

Local elections in Andalusia: a political transition continues

An era of political change, characterized by rising party fragmentation and coalitional uncertainty, has begun in Spain. This is the picture drawn by the March 22nd snap elections in Andalusia, where the incumbent Socialist Party, which has run the region uninterruptedly since 1982, came out in the most voted party list, but failed to achieve an absolute majority of seats...

The wrong therapy for Greece and Europe’s troubles

Reading most newspapers on the negotiations between Greece and the European institutions, the message one gets is that the latter are generous, but tired of helping an undisciplined country. “People feel like they have been helping this country for the past five years,” declared French Finance Minister Michel Sapin last month...

La Spagna e la vita segreta delle parole

La storia della relazione fra un’infermiera praticamente sorda ed un lavoratore di una piattaforma petrolifera quasi cieco: è la trama del tristissimo e tenero film di Isabel Coixet – intitolato appunto La vita segreta delle parole – cioè un dialogo fra un sordo e un cieco...

Il nuovo vocabolario della destra francese

Sembra passato un secolo da quando Marine Le Pen salì al vertice del Front National. Una forza di estrema destra che aveva vissuto alcuni momenti d'oro, che si identificava quasi completamente con il patriarca fondatore, padre della nuova leader, Jean-Marie, e che sembrava condannata al declino...

Once upon a time there was the British two-party system

After the surprising success of UKIP in the 2014 European elections it has become a cliché to argue that the party led by Nigel Farage has changed the British political landscape. It is true, but it has to be interpreted as the latest phase in a broader political change...

SYRIZA e l’evoluzione della sinistra radicale in Grecia

La netta affermazione di SYRIZA, un movimento di sinistra radicale, nelle recenti elezioni, rappresenta un cambiamento per nulla scontato nella politica greca. Le ragioni storiche dell'“esclusione” della sinistra radicale dalla politica risalgono alla guerra civile che vide scontrarsi con le armi, tra il 1946 e il 1949, forze moderate e comuniste...

Misunderstanding ordinary Russians and the failure of sanctions

Despite inflicting severe pain on the economy, and therefore on ordinary Russians, sanctions imposed by Western states on Moscow over the Ukraine crisis have had the opposite effect: instead of weakening the domestic power base of President Vladimir Putin thus forcing him to change his policy, they have enhanced his position as the central figure in the country...

Ukraine’s ambiguous future: success story or failed state?

The Ukraine crisis has already substantially changed not only Ukraine and some of its neighbors, but the European security system, and possibly the international system as a whole. But apart from the external reasons, triggers and implications, the crisis has definite domestic roots. Without understanding these and finding sustainable solutions, the crisis will not be settled in general...

How Obama knows arming the Ukrainians is a bad idea

As is true of most calamities, the utterly ineffective Western response to President Vladimir Putin's aggression in Ukraine allows for a lot of blame to be spread around. For both Europe and America have retreated to comforting half-policies that do nothing to ameliorate, let alone “solve” the greatest threat to the European order since the end of the Cold War...