From Berlin, R. Andreas Kraemer notes that only 37 per cent of the registered electorate cast their ballot for Brexit – less than the 40 per cent threshold used in a previous referendum. And only England and Wales voted to leave, with Scotland, Northern Ireland and Gibraltar all wanting to stay.
If you think of the UK as a federation (like Germany), Kraemer argues, the vote can be interpreted rather differently. Some parts of the country can stay in the EU, and some parts can remain, while all remaining under the Crown.
In Kraemer’s solution, the prospect of a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic, which could reignite the Troubles, disappears.… Seguir leyendo »
The word ‘radicalization’ has been used intensively over the past decade to talk about recruitment to extremist terrorism, usually within an Islamist framework. But why do we use it?
This is the question put by Sarah Marks and Daniel Pick, who look at radicalization from a psychological standpoint. The use of the word in its modern meaning may be new, but we have been here before. In the 1950s, western societies lived in fear of communist ‘brainwashing’. The lessons of that Cold War scare are that terms such as ‘brainwashing’ and ‘radicalization’ obscure as much as they explain about the paths to extremism.… Seguir leyendo »
The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reports that 2016 was the second hottest year on record in the United States and is likely to be confirmed as the hottest worldwide. The findings are not unexpected – 2015 was previously the hottest year on record – but they underline the problem of who is going to lead the struggle against climate change once Donald Trump is installed in the White House on January 20.
The Trump administration is likely to abandon Barack Obama’s leadership on climate and energy policy in favour of a stance which is negative or at least passive.… Seguir leyendo »
Angela Merkel has announced she will stand for a fourth term as German chancellor next year. This is not a complete surprise – she has spent a long time pondering this move, as she does with all decisions. But it is still a big risk.
The mood of European voters is angry, and her decision to open Germany’s doors to one million migrants last year has fuelled the rise of the far right which will complicate the formation of a stable government. But she seems to have confidence that German voters will trust her hand on the tiller in an unstable world.… Seguir leyendo »