Saturday, April 09, 2011

A shining symbol of incompetence

The EU's largest civilian mission, Eulex-Kosovo, was meant to prove the possibility of an effective common foreign policy. An excessive expectation, perhaps, because the EU has always been divided on Kosovo – five member states did not recognise its controversial independence, declared in 2008, and this mission became the substitute for a common policy, says The Guardian. It then goes on to add:
Still, Eulex – which costs about €100m a year and fields almost one policeman, judge or prosecutor for every 1,000 residents of this small territory – could strengthen the rule of law in Kosovo and the stability of the Balkans, and be a powerful symbol of the EU as a peaceful, rule-based force.

In three years it has achieved little. Few prominent investigations have been opened, and the local judiciary has not improved appreciably. The difficult context partly explains this failure, but the main causes are internal – incompetence, weak management and possibly even disloyalty to the mission's mandate.
When we get the Europhile Guardian saying such things, we have reached something of a milestone. All it needs to learn is that incompetence is the default value for the EU. Then, perhaps, it will realise that the only sensible option is to arrange our departure as soon as possible.