Eurosphere roundup: Facebook’s European lobbying; The far right; Breivik trial and more…

Facebook wants to double Brussels staff (to 4 people) and intensify European lobbying

from The Next Web by Robin Wauters

French Presidential Candidate’s Video to Attract Minorities

by Abdoulaye Bah

The far right takes root in Europe , Mariano Aguirre

from open Democracy News Analysis – by Mariano Aguirre

Anders Behring Breivik?s attacks are part of a worrying trend in Europe of the far right?s rise within mainstream politics. From the Netherlands and Germany to Britain and France, immigrant communities are on the defensive.

Breivik urges massacre acquittal

from BBC News | Europe | World Edition
The man accused of killing 77 people in Norway last July boasts of carrying out a “spectacular attack”, and says he should be acquitted.


Breivik refuses to recognise Oslo court

from – World, Europe
Prosecution presents charges against the far-right terrorist who has admitted to a bombing and shooting spree that killed 77

Norway killer: ‘I would have done it again’

from Hurriyet Daily News
Norwegian gunman Anders Behring Breivik defended his massacre of 77 people, insisting Tuesday he would do it all again and calling his rampage the most “spectacular” attack by a nationalist militant since World War II.


Norwegians wary on eve of Breivik trial

from – World, Europe
Run-up to case marred by disagreements over whether attack was act of insanity or result of the coldblooded logic of an extreme political ideology


VIDEO: Norway prepares for Breivik trial

from BBC News | Europe | World Edition
Anders Behring Breivik, who admits carrying out mass killings in Norway, goes on trial in the capital Oslo


Sarkozy breaks silence over ECB role

from – World, Europe
President says the matter of ECB support for growth is ?a question we cannot avoid?, ending a deal with the German chancellor not to publicly refer to it


MAIN FOCUS: Sarkozy endangers French-German axis | 16/04/2012

from euro|topics
Speaking to tens of thousands of supporters on Sunday in Paris, French President Nicolas Sarkozy called for the ECB to assume a stronger role in the euro crisis, thus distancing himself from German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Sarkozy has simply adopted the ideas of his opponent François Hollande, commentators criticise, and fear that German-French relations will be harmed if he is re-elected.


France faces revival of radical left

from – World, Europe
Mélenchon reinforces his position as most dynamic figure in the presidential campaign at rally in Marseilles with tens of thousands of supporters

Eurovision 2012: Semi-Final One Preview

from Stephen Spillane by Stephen
Its that time of year again! Eurovision Time! Like every year I do a preview of the Semi?s and attempt to predict who will get into the final.


ECHR backs UK Government

from Blogactiv by nucleus

Hamza and friends to be extradited to the US following European court decision

By Matthew Lewis
The Council of Europe has gone some way to gaining redemption in the eyes of the British press, with the news that the European Court of Human Rights hasbacked the extradition of Abu Hamzaand four other terror suspects from the UK to the US to stand trial there.


Euronest and Baku ? summary

from Blogactiv by Marek Siwiec MEP
I owe my readers a summary of the Euronest session which took place this week in Baku.
We adopted all planned documents, although the discussion was not very lively. Euronest took over the mechanical procedure of the European Parliament and the real dispute was going on outside the plenary room, or it was simply avoided.

The Euro-2012 and European standards

from Blogactiv by anatoliymartsynovski
The head of the Euro-2012 Ukraine local organising committee Markiyan Lubkivskyi called Ukraine?s preparation for the soccer ?the peculiar rehearsal of Ukraine?s entering to the EU?. ?By preparation for the soccer we have reached new standards not only in the infrastructure ? modern stadiums, airports, hotels, but in the life of common people?, he said to French journalists.


Tackling the EU?s emerging irrelevance in the Doha Round

from Ideas on Europe by ecfr
This is the first blog post in a series of  ?Scorecard comments?. The idea behind this new series is to improve next year?s scorecard ? so we asked a number of academics and researchers to evaluate apects of the ECFR Scorecard 2012. Today we hear from Megan Dee (University of Glasgow) who takes a closer look at the EU?s performance at the WTO and in the Doha Round. Click here for the Scorecard chapter on the topic. If you are interested in contributing to this series please drop us an email at press[at]


Présidentielle en France : Pas de feuille de route pour l?Europe.

from Blogactiv by Emmanuel Morucci

Tout à coup l?Europe semble avoir disparu des médias. Rien plus un mot. Nada. L?Europe, l?Union européenne n?existent plus. On n?en parle plus. Les candidats aux élections européennes éludent la question comme si finalement la dimension supranationale était absente du débat pourtant essentiel. Parfois  avons nous droit à une allusion pour critiquer ce que l?Europe à pu faire et parfois bien discrètement d?autres candidats rappellent l?utilité de cette union européenne.

The rise of Dutch neo-liberal nationalism , Marijn Nieuwenhuis

from open Democracy News Analysis – by Marijn Nieuwenhuis
Who gets the blame for the ongoing social effects of the coalition?s love for neo-liberal principles? The culprits are rather conveniently eastern European migrants, the Greeks, the leftists and of course those that dare to associate themselves with Islam.

The pain in Spain

from Blogactiv by nucleus


Why was ACTA approved in the EU Fisheries Council?

from Ideas on Europe by Ronny Patz
In December 2011, the EU Council decision to sign the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) was approved during a Fisheries Council meeting as an ?A-Item?, i.e. without discussion at ministerial level. While both, the fact that a Fisheries Council approves ACTA and that this happens without ministerial debate, may look strange at first sight, these are a quite normal procedures for hundreds of issues.


Günter Grass, antisemitism and the inflation of evil, Antony Lerman

from open Democracy News Analysis – by Antony Lerman
The Israel factor has politicised the business of assessing antisemitism such that the vitriolic disagreement surrounding it has become about far more than just facts, intelligent judgment and expertise. What does Israel, what does anyone gain from this?


Spanish fears stoked by genuine concerns over banks and regional government spending

by Open Europe blog team
We’ve got a piece over in City AM today looking at the reasons behind the increased financial market jitters over the state of the Spanish economy. Despite the usual EU protestations that Spanish fundamentals are sound, there are definite areas of concern present in the Spanish economy – not least, as always, the banking sector. That’s not to say a bailout is assured but simply that more needs to be done to ensure the stability of the Spanish economy and convince the markets that Spain is on the path to a full recovery.

Economic growth is the theme for spring

from Public Affairs 2.0 by fhbrussels

Spring is the season of growth, and economic growth in Europe has become the dominant theme of the moment. It is certainly a central theme of the French presidential elections.

The trial of a Norwegian terrorist

from Ideas on Europe by Erik Dale

Around mid-day on a warm day in July last year I submerged my body into a cold pool of water along a river a few miles from Cannes in Southern France. I contemplated how good life was in that very moment and how there could be no end to this happiness. Little did I know that the end was but a few minutes away. Keeping my head just above the surface of water, breathing through my nostrils with my mouth submerged, heaven on earth was interrupted by Sony Ericsson?s standard notification sound. A new text message had arrived. It was just before 4pm and somewhere in Norway a tall, blond Norwegian was driving in van towards a little island called Utøya.

New EU ACTA reviewer also recommends not signing it, calls ACTA a threat to civil liberties

from Boing Boing by Cory Doctorow

ACTA is the controversial Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, an extreme, far-reaching copyright treaty drafted in secret by industry and government trade reps, under a seal of confidentiality that even extended to Members of the European Parliament, who were not allowed to see what was being negotiated on their behalf. In February, the EU rapporteur (a member of the European Parliament charged with investigating pending legislation and presenting it to Parliament) for ACTA handed in his report and resigned as rapporteur, concluding that the treaty was a disaster for privacy, fairness and human rights, and that the process by which it had been negotiated was hopelessly corrupt. He recommended that the EU reject the treaty. He said, “I condemn the whole process which led to the signature of this agreement: no consultation of the civil society, lack of transparency since the beginning of negotiations, repeated delays of the signature of the text without any explanation given, reject of Parliament’s recommendations as given in several resolutions of our assembly.”

Is the Eurozone crisis nailing the coffin of Britain?s EU membership?

from Blogactiv by nucleus

By Peter Wilding

Britain?s EU membership is not an affair of the heart but an accounting exercise, in which economic advantages (above all from membership of the single market) must be weighed against the costs of red tape, lost sovereignty, and taxpayers? cash paid into the EU budget. So saysBagehot in today?s Economist, repeating baldly the ?price of everything, value of nothing? equation upon which Britain?s fragile EU membership rests.

The Eurozone?s politics according to the Financial Times, Julien Etienne

from open Democracy News Analysis – by Julien Etienne

In the last two years newspapers have been promising more or less the same thing to Eurozone citizens: collapse, soon. But the Eurozone has proved surprisingly resilient and shown evidence of a commonality of superior interests and a capacity to coordinate against the fringes.

Governance reforms have left the euro’s flawed structure intact

by Centre for European Reform

by Philip Whyte

Eurozone policy-makers often complain that they are not given enough credit for all the changes they have pushed through since the Greek sovereign debt crisis broke out. It is an understandable reaction. Since 2010, they have presided over a major overhaul of the eurozone?s governance framework. They have adopted a ?Euro Plus Pact?, which commits countries to pushing through supply-side reforms; a ?Six-Pack?, which strengthens the old Stability and Growth Pact and adds a new framework for monitoring economic imbalances; and a ?Fiscal Stability Treaty? (or ?compact?), which requires member-states to implement balanced budget rules into their national law. In addition, they have created a bail-out fund (or firewall) to provide liquidity assistance to distressed sovereigns.

The battle for the heart and soul of the ECB continues

by Open Europe blog team

If any German happened to be tuning into French radio station RMC this morning, we’re sure they must have choked on their semmel – at least if they have any cash stashed away. This is what French President Nicolas Sarkozy had to say about the role of the ECB:

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