Tuesday, March 24, 2020

"The EU Struggles for Relevance in the Fight against Coronavirus"

I know the European Union as an entity has institutional limitations on what it can do but the thing that really seemed odd was the lack of response to Italy's plight from the individual nations. As noted in the intro to March 13's "No EU Country Responded to Italian Plea for Help with Coronavirus.":
Can this be true?
You'd think in their own self-interest, much less European solidarity, that the EU members would have been waiting for the opportunity to stand up and deliver....
From Der Spiegel:
With the wave of coronavirus infections washing over Europe, countries have turned inward to protect themselves. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has struggled to define the EU's role in the crisis as border checks have been reintroduced across the Continent. 
Every morning at 9 a.m., a small group gathers on the 13th floor of the Berlaymont Building in the European Quarter of Brussels to discuss the latest in the fight against the novel coronavirus. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen takes a seat at the head of the table. Her cabinet head sits, at a significant distance, to her left, while on her right are her press people. Von der Leyen stares into a large screen where she can see the commissioners who are dealing with various aspects of the crisis. Even though their offices are just one or two floors beneath that of von der Leyen, they nevertheless only meet up by video link - a precautionary measure because of the virus.