tv Quadriga - The International Talk Show LINKTV October 28, 2016 7:00am-7:31am PDT
melinda: hello and a warm welcome to "quadriga." our topic today is europe in disarray. unite . was created to europe after the war but it has seldom looked so divide as in the past few months. first the crisis over britain's decision to leave and now the trade deal between the european union and canada is on the verge of collapse. they can't even agree on a common policy for dealing with more aggressive russia.
short of-term needs are taking precedence over the common european good. is it all over for the e.u.? we have invited three renowned journalists to help us answer that question. you pleasure to welcome will reich herrmann. she says the e.u. will notot break apart. and we welcome malte lehming, who says even if an agreement on ceta with be reached, the e.u. is still experiencing its greatest crisis ever. and finally, andreas kluth, of the economist. he says all the forces in the e.u. today are sent riffugal in t's hard to imagine in
other six decades the e.u. will exifment so, clearly dive ergent opinions there. ulrike herrmann, the pessimists would seem to be in good company. bogue the e.u. president junker and the foreign minister have said this represents a -- an existential crisis for the european union. would you not agree with that in >> well, no. look at ceta. it's supposed to be an, a trade agreement between canada and the e.u. but the trade flourishes anyway even without the trade agreement even if ceta was not signed, not agreed on among the parliamented in europe, nonothing would happen. trade with canada would flourish as well. you should not always think that once europe is divided,
hat's the end of the e.u.. melinda: malte lehming, this is hardly the first crisis the e.u. has faced. 11 years ago the french and dutch rejectsed a proposed e.u. constitution. wasn't that a graver threat and the e.u. survived that just fine? >> the crisis, i would say in this case, the crisis is not just singular as it was 11 years ago. we have multiple crises. we have the refugee crisis, what to do with a million refugees, thousands still coming over the mediterranean to the southern shorves italy and nobody really knows thousand make a difference between migrants and refugees. we have the ukraine in crisis, we have unresolved greek debt crisis, still making bigger and bigger debts from term to term and nobody knows what to do
about it.t. so we haveve a numumber of cris that come together and no clear will to reform these things. i'm afraid that until next year when three very, very important elections have taken place, germany, the netherlands and france, thee member states that are the core of the e.u. and the outcome is very much how the reform process in the e.u. with -- will go on. say centri you fugitival forces prevail but we ve the banking system up and running, and in the end isn't it a zigzag course? is that so surprising, if you look -- you're an american. if you look at how long it took the u.s. so get integration of
all those colonies and later states, is assistant that surprising to see that the e.u. hays bumpy course? >> we could get sidetracked on that course between the declaration of understand and the constitution. overt course of a decade it was figured out how to get these 13 states into a proper union. and -- >> and you had a civil war again to --? that is another argument that would support a pessimistic course but i'm saying the union as such as healed. in the case of the e.u., what you see, i'm with malt e -- malte on this point, i must say. it's at accumulation of crises. i'll not pessimistic on seta. it's economically not the end of the world, not huge. i do think ceta is an important symbol and has an important political meaning in that on
all these other issues, the e.u. has, the refugee crisis, ukraine, and so forth, been demonstrating to e.u. citizens itself that it can no longer solve any problems, anything big. but at least until now the e.u. had a sort of superhero power, and that was trade policy. the original reason for being of the e.u. was we 21 together can face america, these giants in trade and get good trade deals done. now for the past year or so we've been demonstrating that the e.u. is prone to hysteria over these trade deals, especially the germans and austrians, because ceta is really a warmup for the american trade deal and now we're seeing that the germans first and now one region of one small member state, belgium,
keep throwing up question marks over these deals. and if you are elsewhere in the world, whether canada or china, you are saying these people are not serious, we have to have other plans, the e.u. cannot be taken seriously so we've basically shown that even in our superpower, the trade deals, the e.u. cannot come together. that is what makes me pessimistic the e.u. will come together on any other serious problem. melinda: let me come back to the trade deal in a moment but one more on that broader picture. malte lehming listed several where there has been resistance. the vi south africa. grad countries have refused to take in their share of refugees.
the british voting to leave altogether. you will reich -- ulrike, who -- what is with the great disannex the e.u.? why such a bad sflap does it really do nothing for its citizens? >> no, i think the basic problem is usually you have a decision taken but all 28 member states. usually a compromise, t taken i brussels by all go. then they go home to the are countries and tell their people, well, that was brussels that decide on this and they never, ever mention that it was they themselves that agreed on this compromise. this kind of political rhetoric, which is very convenient for the national governments, of course now makes people feel that far-away brusssels dominating their own politics, which is not true but is an impress -- impression that the national governments foster themselves.
now this is costing a price. of course europe only has a possibility to survive if this rhetoric is being changed. melinda: interestingly enough -- >> i don't believe it's just a question of rhetoric. we have two principles in doubt right now. the first is we have too many decisions that are requiring unanimous decisions from all european member state countries. too many of them. we should have a more democratic element, that the majority rules. this means we have to change our contracts. >> and t that would mean that germany rusmse i can understand that the others don't want that. >> i understand that, too, but it's a question of majorities in europe. if you have 80 million germans and they play, try play by the rules but the others don't and don't have to be frayed of sanctions, that would be a serious problem. that's the next problem, we need a more effective sanction
stfment the italians, saying yes, the interests of the italian people are much more interesting to me than the tech no kraatz in brussels. he doesn't have to be afraid of any kind of sanction. >> you know why? if eau replied -- if they applied sanctions to italy, italy would be forced to leave the euro. if we agree on italy having these large deficits, they want to save the euro zone. it's not only about sanctions. europe is really a very complex system because the countries are so different. and of course that's very difficult to explain to the voters. but i think that just having sanctions won't solve anything. that's all i want to say. melinda: ecoconomic sanctions, case? underline the -- >> and you just made our point by pointing to the complexity of the system which, a, europeans don't understand,
therefore they don't like it, if you don't understand it. and b the complexity of the system means we cannot solve very big issues and that -- there it is. not one little reform or tweak will change it. melinda: interestingly enough. ulrike said a moment ago that brussels seems so far way to many member states but in fact the region that essentially stopped the canadian region -- trade agreement dead in its tracks is not far way, it's a small region of belgium of -- known add wallonia where there are pretty much more people than cows. let's take a closer look at what happened to that trade agreement. >> the mood in brussels is somber. the e. -- e.u. has been plunged into another crisis, this time over the ceta.
>> it's p evident to me and to canada as though european -- europe is not capable of reaching an international a agreement. >> but many m europe say the wallonians should stand up for their rights. there have been huge demonstrations across the continent over these international trade agreements. many complain they have been negotiated in secret and will likely favor the interests of big business over those of consumers. does the ceta dispute signal a new low in the -- between the e.u. and average european citizens? >> i was among about the cows and humans. in fact wallonia boasts one cow for every three humans. it has lavishly subsidized and s, this rrt region
they feared canadian competition. is that legitimate reason to block a trade deal that would have made europe six billion euros richer a year? >> you get this opposition every time you negotiate a trade deal. you get it in america and against the american-asian trade deal. and of course any negotiation balss these differences out but we had i think a good working model before in the e.u. where the e.u. would negotiate on behalf of everyone and decide to get the best deal for everyone. they have a right to go in the streets and they have a right to vote and that is free speech but we are, at the economist, we have observed this year what i believe is a tone of hysteria that actually largely has started from the german-speaking parts of of europe, austria and germany,
where one fear after another was, i believe. hyped up out of very complex details. a narrative was constructed first that the americans or canadians would bring in poor r standards, especially in food. then that was replaced by another fear and most recently by this narrative that these deals are just good for good corporations, which i thinink i also an oversimplification. so now they are afraid of course in belgium for agriculture composition. this is exactly an example of what we see it a trend which affects the entire west from australia to trump supporters to brexit supporters, a reaction against globalization from people who want to pull the drawbridge up and those who want to keep it down. that is the battle line, the default line we see in the
entire west and we have to sway this debate so that the right side winds -- wins. melinda: and ulrike herrmann, those who would like to keep trade flowing in the end of -- are those who would benefit. i mentioned that six billion euros a year to europe as a whole that this treaty is with. the fact is neither the i.u. or any other group is doing a very good job of redistribution to those hurt my -- by trade. > it does nothing. six ny alone has g.d.p. of trillion. it means that six billion is nothing. the trade is already flourishing between canada and the e.u. and this trade agreement will not alter anything so the really interesting question is why do
yoyou need a trade agreement if there is already trade flourishing? the point is it's all about mr. ing the the critics, luth says, the arbitration between states and trans national firms is really a big problem because in fact you have then a second possibility for trans national big firms to go to court and to question the a lot of money out of the state or the government and that is ot just in -- it appears, it's the experience we have with nafta. melinda: the north american trade association? >> yeah. and the same thing with the energy sector here in the e.u. and we saw big international governments getting a lot of money from governments. and that's something we don't want to see again. that's the main point the bebelgians make.
it's not abouting a rarian stuff, it's about these international disputes. melinda: so it sounds like we're hearing that this is a proper exercise of democracy and trade agreements if it necessary can be reconfigured. >> that's the problem. it's a proper example of democracy but democracy belgian style. each of the regions need to support at agreement that was agreed on from 28 member states over seven years. that's not democracy. i mean, this is, if we for example, if we as zerm -- germany would send troops broad somewhere and it needs to be supported by every 16th lender in germany instead nch the parliament it would be terrible. we would never send troops anywhere because we would always find a socialist government somewhere that would
in a -- say no to it. all these details that the farmer would pay things -- you can always, you can find compensation agreements for that, you can say let's have a yeah, we tried for a year and see if you have made bad fortune out of it and so on. every kind of these problems are solvable. it's a reflection of the european sentiment against globalization, capitalism and a reflection that especially in jermaine and austria these sen interestents were growing so high. melinda: another aspect that is causing people to wonder to what degree the e.u. is in a sense still governable. there were cries after the yan -- canadian trade deal was rejected by the wall own yaps that globalism is dead. and one said the rejection of ceta amounts to a death knell
for internationalism as well and he warns that russia could profit. let's take a look at the equivoindication on sanctions if atrocities in aleppo continue. >> russia has been criticized sharply for its support of the syrian military, particularly air strikes that have targeted aleppo. during the five years of the syrian civil warks more than 400,000 people have been killed. at an e.u. sum n.i.t. brussels last week, the member states con agree on whehether to impos immediate sanctions on russia for its air strikes in rush -- alepo. the trouble with current european policy is we have no consensus. that makes things easier for the russians. and in easternn ukraine, russiaian-backed separatists continue to shell government troop positions in violation of
last year's minsk agreement. will the european union with its 28 member states ever be able to agree on a common foreign policy? melinda: andreas kluth we all know that famous rather disparageb -- disparaging sentence uttered by henry kissinger, "europe? who do i call if i want to talk to europe?" is it a reliable partner in an increasingly turbulent world? >> for america, you mean. wewe just watched that piece about the russian situation. putin is the primary beneficiary of the european disunity we're discussing here. that is absolutely true and very tragic because putin has been observing this trend of centrifugal forces in europe
for years now and he's exploiting it. we know his strategy is to aim dividing the at e.u. states one from another and dividing public opinion. there was recently a notorious spectacular case about a made up rape allegation trumped up of a russian girl that was trumped up to the highest level in russian -- russia and became a, an international incident. the german spy services are now investigating this russian interference in the german democratic process if you will. we know he's even interfered in the american democratic process this year and elsewhere. his strategy is to split europe as best he can and this should be a wakeup call that there are much greater things at stake, i
agree, than ceta, the canadian trade deal. but if we don't find common ground on how to deal with bullies in our neighborhood, then it's curtains. melinda: the three biggest countries only wanted to warn russia that individuals that were in some way connected with the bombing in aleppo might face drastic measures. how is it possible that the european union states couldn't agree on that? >> well, i think we already had sanctions on russia because of the conflict in the ukraine and they didn't work very well. the question is do sanctions really help? it was the same thing when we had sanctions with iran.. didn't really help either. then the basic question is also of course, many european countries really have their own interests. they want of course to export into russia and make money. to is it really a good idea
remove russia economically? they are very weak anyway of -- because of the sinking oil price. that's their largest export commodity, oil. once the oil price went down, putin became more aggressive because the weakening economic situation in russia forces him to be aggressive outside to stabilize his power. if we start weakening him on top of the sinking oil price it might be backfiring. it's not really a good idea. but i agree that europe is divide anyway on the question effect anctions would themselves economically. melinda: what about brexit? does that make a common foreign and security policy even less easy to reach? >> yes. very much so. the core strength of the european union is trade, fiscal and economic unity. it's not foreign policy.
they do not -- don't even have a military to try implement policy. >> they have nato. >> nato is different. it's not part of the european union. that makes the biggest difference of all. i believe very much in nato bebeing a strong foreign policy militaririly for us and i don't believe in the european unioion being that. maybe they should call putin directly and not try find anyone in the european union to talk to to try to solve problems. that might be easier. melinda: our title is ceta, brexit, russia, is it all over for the e.u.? let's look ahead for five and maybe 20 years. brofe answer if you would from all three of you. where will the e.u. be then? will it be -- still exist and will it be in a different form than now? >> neither ceta nor brexit will
break the e.u. in the coming few -- few years but i think after six decades of a very kerve -- curvy path toward more integration we have reached eau turning point and are going in the other direction and in coming decades you will see the energy going out of the european project until it becomes irrelevant. >> the e.u. will survive for the simple reason that economically europe is united since roman times, the last 2,000 years. >> we have strong anti-global forces on the far right and far left. if they become stronger in the nextxt years it will be very ha for europe to survive and we will all look to the american election and the netherlands and german elections to know if europe can be safe or not. melinda: thanks to all of you for being with us and to all of you out there for tuning in. thanks. see you soon.8úxúrdñ:ñ:ñ:ñ
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