Monitor Weekly, 17 September 2010
EU or the Rotten West
Europe, we love you. I love you as well, responds Europe. But does Europe like itself?
If we roughly sketched the West today, we would obtain an image of a confused and old Europe, swamped by scandals and greedy interests of its member states. In the year 2010, France is deporting. The word is not strange to us, with the caveat that our deportations were bloody. How can a country with such tradition of freedom organize persecution of Roma people? How come that the principle of collective responsibility is being applied for crime, prostitution, begging and smuggling?
A scandalous example occurred earlier in a country notable for its order and functioning like a watch. The Swiss said no to mosques at a referendum. Freedom of religious expression has been democratically denied. Fear from terrorism depicted the Islamic religious community as the nest of evil. Again, collective responsibility is called upon others and the unalike.
Then there is Austria, an important EU member. It is shaken by Hypo, the big EU money laundering scandal. Business with leaders of dictatorial and undemocratic states and narcotic drug dealers lasted about twenty years. From Sanader to Saric. The strength of the Austrian state is being put to test as the same is taking on the white collar criminals from the magic world of finance.
That the cleaning up of one's own crime will be everybody's task is confirmed by the analysis of the London's Guardian. It reveals that the leading world banks, desperate for cash during the present financial crisis, have reached out for mafia's money. It is suspected that the larger portion of the 352 billion dollar profit from narcotic drug trading has been gradually integrated into the global economic system. The dirty money has been 'washed', while dependence on mafia has been increased. Who is stronger – the European free society idea or the EU mafia?
And how is EU presenting itself to its potential candidate – Montenegro? Very nicely and European, indeed. German colloss Deutche Telecom knows how to operate in accordance with Balkan rules. Percentages, as almighty's commandments, go to Montenegrin and Macedonian politicians in dealings with state authorities. Giving bribes in business and receiving bribes in politics are two sides of the same medal named greed.
Our overseas neighbor, the cheerful Berlusconi, as a domestic subject trades in control over the energy flows Montenegro – Italy. In return, he archives the issue of smuggling and the respective involvement of his Montenegrin colleague.
Altogether, major fouls from the West are not scarce. The most recent is the act of the departing OSCE Ambassador who sums up the results of her stay in Montenegro with presence of a vulgar Mayor who beats journalists on the street. The highest EU mission official in our country is still a tenant of this same Mayor.
Representatives from the West often turn their heads in front of crime and human rights abuses of local authorities. Many of them are just too busy promoting the interests of their fellow citizen and investors trying to get a piece of Montenegrin natural resources. In return, they close their eyes when faced with dictatocracy in the land of fear.
There exist, of course, other examples of Western representatives. They have a nerve for integration processes in Montenegro. No one knows better than them that commitments for EU accession cannot be met by the present rulers. They testify that Europe must demonstrate that it is a strong community of free societies and states and not the Rotten West.
Jose Manuel Barroso, President of the EU Commission, delivered the following message to Europe: "Let's swim together, or drown separately. We will succeed only if we think European – whether we act on the national, regional or local level." Despite all EU weaknesses, Montenegrins should gladly accept the invitation to swim since the drowning in local Montenegrin serfdom is already guaranteed.