O camaleão Europeu
15 de Setembro: O Presidente da Comissão Europeia, Durão Barroso, sorri durante o debate no Parlamento Europeu em Estrasburgo. Seria reeleito no dia seguinte (foto: Frederick Florin/APF):
O Parlamento Europeu — a ala direita dele e alguns socialistas — deu nesta quarta-feira um segundo mandato a José Manuel Durão Barroso; por mais cinco anos, e depois do fracasso que foi o seu primeiro mandato, continuará a ser o Presidente da Comissão Europeia. Segundo Hans-Jürgen Schlamp, na Der Spiegel (sempre anti-Barroso), a UE fez um mau negócio e terá um patrão fraco. O impopular Durão Barroso, acusado de falta de coragem e visão, tornou-se alvo de anedotas, até mesmo de aliados como a Chanceler Angela Merkel e o Presidente Nicolas Sarkozy:
But despite his frozen smile, traces of frustration and irritation can be seen in his face, even in his moment of triumph. It is not the 219 MEPS who voted against him in Wednesday’s vote or the 117 abstentions that are responsible for his mood. Rather, it is the insults and injuries which he has had to put up with in recent months — and not just from political opponents but also from within his own camp. Most of the participants in the election actually consider Barroso to be the wrong choice.
Barroso is convincing “neither in terms of his program nor politically,” said Martin Schulz, leader of the Socialist group in the European Parliament and a regular critic of Barroso. The Portuguese politician was simply “not appropriate and not electable,” Schulz said.
[…] Merkel and her friends got Barroso the job as head of the European Commission five years ago, defeating then-Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt, the candidate of choice of then-German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder. Merkel was also one of Barroso’s strongest supporters, along with Sarkozy, when it came to a second term in the post of Commission president. This did not, however, prevent the two leaders from first cutting Barroso down to size.
Like a teacher with a student who has been held back a year, Sarkozy openly gave Barroso the task of writing a new, “ambitious” program in the summer holidays if he wanted to keep the job. The obedient schoolboy wrote out his political ambitions for the next five years. It’s a document full of generalities and platitudes — but that didn’t bother Sarkozy at all. The French president wasn’t worried about the content of the document, just the demonstration of power and submission.
Angela Merkel doesn’t do things so crudely. She shows that she has the Commission president under control using refined irony. […]
Petar Pismestrovic, «Kleine Zeitung»