It’s Italy which will fire the starter’s gun on a turnaround on the EU’s policy on Russia and the Ukraine war.
It might well be Italy which marks the starting point of a demise of sorts of the EU, as the coalition government collapses. Mario Draghi, who might be remembering interest rate hikes like the ECB’s this week, which only happened previously when he was the boss overseeing the eurozone crisis, is out.
By resigning his post as PM, he must be that he sees the writing on the wall and that we are heading towards another eurozone crisis.
Right now, the euro has already slumped to parity with the dollar and Eurozone inflation averages about 8.6 per cent (although it’s now 10 per cent in Spain, 12 per cent in Greece and a thundering 20 per cent in Estonia). Have a heart for Croatia which is planning on joining the eurozone soon.
But it’s Italy which will fire the starter’s gun on a turnaround on the EU’s policy on Russia and the Ukraine war. In September a snap election is almost certain to put in power as a coalition two of Italy’s far-right groups, whose leaders both have an admiration for Putin.
Once this happens, others in the EU will see how ludicrous it is to continue the so-called punishment of Putin, which in reality destroys economies and ruins lives across the EU 27-member bloc. Other EU countries will see that Italy’s desperate situation of having debt at 150 % of its GDP and double-digit inflation can only be rescued by a radical political change. Elites in other EU countries will be scared that populist uprisings which throw out incumbent mainstream parties are heading their way once they see the Italian economy go from boiling to a gentle simmer. And once the Italian coalition is in place, dialogue — something which we haven’t seen yet from the EU — will begin with Putin.
Putin is laughing all the way to the bank in Ukraine with this present crisis that Europe has created for itself. There is no urgency on his side to really do anything. The EU is lowering itself into an acid bath all by itself and all he needs to do is watch it like watching a comedy on TV.
The Italian change in politics will be a huge blow to the EU as well, which is really spiralling out of control. Who could have imagined that a political has-been like Ursula von der Leyen would be quite as useless as she has turned out to be. By definition — and tradition — European Commission presidents are supposed to be pretty inept and servile to their masters France and Germany. But few could have guessed how Ursula would have messed up so badly on Brexit, Covid, Russia and soon the eurozone itself.
The EU is only as strong as the three giants of Europe — Germany, France and Italy — which it is supposed to protect. Yet for the first time in 30 years, Germany has a trade deficit and it talking about energy rationing with many factories in the country expected to close down or run on half production soon.
All the pressure will be in the ECB as another eurozone crisis looms when Italy is forced to pay back higher rates to its debtors due to the ECB slowing down printing of new currency. This is extremely dangerous for Italy and could bring about a total collapse of its economy like Greece. The difference is that Italy is a founding EU country and it is too big to collapse, which means that France and Germany will have to keep it on a life support machine. It is hard to imagine this scenario without a change of heart from Macron and Scholz with regards to the war in Ukraine and the EU’s view in general towards Putin. Germany has just recently started to show signs of wanting to take a different tact on Putin. Recently, it was revealed that an aid package of 9 bn euros, destined for Ukraine, was held up by Berlin, coupled with the Germans failing to resupply countries supporting Ukraine with tanks which it earlier promised. These are not ‘cracks’ appearing. These signs are more prolific than this and we are more likely to see squabbles soon between Scholz and von der Leyen in Brussels, with Macron intervening to look for a new dialogue with Putin.
The once golden relationship between the U.S. and the EU is also grinding to a halt. The EU will soon be more divided than ever about the war in Ukraine and Biden’s almost certain self-destruction at the midterms in November will see to a great reduction in the U.S. role of supplying arms to Zelensky. There will be a blame game which will be crafted carefully for weeks in the media beforehand which points to endemic corruption in the Ukrainian elite and the illegal sales of much of the U.S. hardware to Syrian jihadists. This has already started in fact, but has not yet shifted into top gear, which should be expected over the summer period before the Italian elections. The West needs to get out of the war in Ukraine and it needs a gilt-edged reason for the U-turn. Zelensky, as ever, will provide them with the perfect excuses, as he never fails in his primary role of useful idiot — that is of course if he survives assassination attempts from his own cabal who want a larger slice of the cake. The Left’s preposterous notion of fighting a full-on war in Ukraine with NATO forces will be nipped at the bud by fascists in Italy who believe in the power of feeding people and giving them public services rather than the folly of geopolitical chest-beating and the foibles which accompany such nonsense. Who would have thought that the descendants of Mussolini would direct the EU away from the abyss which it is hell bent on throwing itself over?
Source: Strategic Culture